AVE MARIA, Florida — A group of alumni from a conservative Catholic university is asking the Florida school to rescind an invitation to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos to speak at the school’s graduation.
The Naples Daily News reported Sunday that 36 graduates of Ave Maria University are protesting the secretary’s scheduled May 5 ceremony where 250 students will receive diplomas.
The protesters say they oppose DeVos’s roll backs of regulations governing how schools deal with people with disabilities and her cuts to the Education Department’s civil rights office.
University President Jim Towey said no current students have complained about DeVos’s appearance and he will not rescind the invitation. Towey said he supports DeVos’s positions. Towey served as President George W. Bush’s office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives.