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Education Dept. gets torched for a tweet that misspells civil rights icon's name

Deirdre Shesgreen
Betsy DeVos testifies during her confirmation hearing.
Chip Somodevilla | Getty Images

WASHINGTON — Well, this isn't going help Betsy DeVos, Trump's controversial new Education secretary, win any new fans.

The Department of Education on Sunday tweeted a quote about the importance of education from the late W.E.B. Du Bois, the revered historian and civil rights activist who helped found the NAACP.

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But the effort to highlight Du Bois' famous words backfired—because whoever sent the Tweet misspelled Du Bois' name.

Screen shot of U.S. Department of Education tweet

The response was ruthless, with Twitter followers of the agency lampooning the misspelling.

Tweet 1

Tweet 2

Tweet 3

The Senate narrowly confirmed DeVos last week despite a firestorm of complaints about her nomination. The billionaire philanthropist is best known as a vocal advocate for charter schools and vouchers, which critics see as a way to undermine public education.

She had a rocky confirmation hearing, during which she seemed to not be familiar with critical education issues, such as the federal Individuals with Disabilities Act.