Education Secretary DeVos expected to draw large crowds

BELLEVUE, Wash. (AP) — Two big crowds are expected when Education Secretary Betsy DeVos speaks in Bellevue, Washington this week.

The Seattle Times reports that Friday’s visit will be her first in Washington state as the secretary of education.

Inside the posh Hyatt Regency, the Washington Policy Center is expecting 1,500 people for its sold-out gala, where the minimum ticket price is $350.

Outside, DeVos critics expect an equal number of protesters who see DeVos’ support of charter schools and vouchers as a threat to the nation’s public-school system.

Nearly 30 organizations plan to have members there, including the state’s largest teachers union.

DeVos, a billionaire philanthropist, has championed charter schools run by for-profit operators in her home state of Michigan and school-choice systems that allow students to use public money to attend private schools.