Ed. Secretary Betsy DeVos booed by graduates at commencement speech

Ed. Secretary Betsy DeVos booed by graduates at commencement speech

U.S. Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, attended President Trump's press conference with members of the GOP on the passage of legislation to roll back the Affordable Care Act in the Rose Garden of the White House on May 4, 2017.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos was booed Wednesday afternoon as she took to a podium at Daytona Beach's Ocean Center to deliver Bethune-Cookman University's commencement speech.

Students booed DeVos when she received an honorary degree, prompting B-CU President Edison Jackson to say, "You don't know her, nor do you know her story."

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At least one protester was seen being escorted out of the venue.

Minutes into DeVos' speech, Jackson stepped up to the podium and told the booing crowd, "If this continues, your degrees will be mailed to you."

During a Wednesday morning news conference, Jackson defended the school's decision to invite DeVos to speak.

"It's important to understand people will disagree," Jackson said. "That does not mean one should roll over and play dead because you disagree."

Protesters pressured the university to rescind its invitation because of comments DeVos has made suggesting that historically black colleges and universities were "pioneers of school choice." She later acknowledged that the schools originated because of racial segregation.

B-CU administrators said DeVos has devoted her career to promoting educational opportunities, saying that Mary McLeod Bethune, the university's founder, wasn't constrained by political ideology.

The booing reached a fever pitch when DeVos revealed her plans to visit Bethune's home and grave after the speech.