University Of Baltimore Stands By DeVos As Fall Commencement Speaker

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Students at the University of Baltimore are demanding to know why Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos was invited to speak at their upcoming graduation.

President Kurt Schmoke is defending his invitation to the controversial politician, and the university president is also meeting with students.

RELATED: Baltimore Students Protest Planned Betsy DeVos Speech

The graduating class at Bethune-Cookman University booed DeVos last spring.

Some students at the historically black university found her comments about “school choice” racially insensitive.

On Monday, students at the University of Baltimore staged a protest after learning DeVos would deliver the keynote address at the school’s fall commencement.

The school holds its graduation ceremonies at the Lyric Theater, and students WJZ’s Amy Yensi spoke to are hoping Secretary DeVos doesn’t show up.

Thousands of students signed a petition, saying DeVos is not welcome at their campus or graduation ceremony.

Devos is a staunch supporter of school choice, which allows parents to use public funds to send their children to private schools. This puts her at odds with teachers unions and supporters of public education.

The Trump cabinet member faced major opposition during her confirmation hearings, with some senators questioning her understanding of the job, including two Republicans who voted against her.

Back in March, Governor Larry Hogan and Secretary Devos greeted second graders in Montgomery County, but the crowd of students the University of Baltimore has much stronger opinions about the education secretary.

The graduation ceremony is schedule for December 18.

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