T hanks for taking the time to respond. It certainly makes sense to say that there are teachers out there who are great at the art of teaching but who are currently constrained by rules and preset curricula and the fact that they have to teach to the test. I think that’s what DeVos meant, and I actually think many teachers would agree with her — most teachers I know wish they had more freedom to innovate. But DeVos also believes that the entire system needs to be revamped. Saying that the whole thing has to be blown up because it’s not working on any level implies that the teachers aren’t currently doing great work, despite the fact that they’re great teachers. DeVos is (or seems to many to be) saying that they’re great teachers and that it’s not their fault that they’re not doing great work right now; the teachers themselves are saying that they actually are doing great work right now, despite the fact that there are imperfections in the system.
From a tactical perspective, I think she could have handled the situation a lot better. Saying teachers are in receive mode isn’t going to win her any points. Maybe it was just a case of unfortunate phrasing.