In December, I was invited to come to Washington, DC to meet the Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, and her Director of Non-Public Education, Dr. Maureen Dowling. This was something that interested me, as I had pretty much zero contact with public school officials as I was home schooled. And, I was about to start testing to go to a traditional public High School starting in September.
Both Secretary DeVos and Dr. Dowling knew all about me. They really liked that I’d done a lot of teaching and teaching assistant jobs over the past two years. Secretary DeVos really understood what it was like to be homeschooled since she actually homeschooled her own kids. Usually people seem to think homeschooled kids are antisocial or have issues or just don’t understand what life is like. Secretary DeVos and Dr. Dowling both really understand. They asked a lot of great questions about learning languages and we got off on a totally different topic, talking about flying!
Secretary DeVos’ husband, Dick DeVos, runs a charter school in Michigan, where the kids get to learn to fly and actually get a Private Pilots license when they graduate, along with a high school diploma! I am taking flying lessons and I would LOVE to go to a school like that, but there aren’t any in this area.
One of the nice things that they did for me was to invite me to come back to the Department of Education to meet some of the interns and to make some new friends. They both totally get that it’s hard to meet new kids when you’re homeschooled, so that was very considerate and I appreciated that a lot. I’m planning to come back in March, sometime.
Dick DeVos was outside the office and I got a chance to meet him and talk about flying, which is something he loves. He has 4500 hours of flying time and his new thing is flying a helicopter. I told him that I was going to fly in an acrobatic biplane for my birthday and he told me a joke, “What food does acrobatic biplane pilots eat for breakfast?”
I already knew this joke, since my instructor Pete, already told it to me. 🙂
“Bananas, because they taste the same going down as they do coming up!” I ruined his joke 🙂
it was a great experience and I hope I shared some good information!