Acting Education Secretary King Featured on ‘CBS This Morning,’ the Next Morning

By Mark Walsh — January 13, 2016 1 min read
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Acting U.S. Secretary of Education John King got some quality air time on “CBS This Morning” on Tuesday, one day after he was apparently bumped from the show by news involving El Chapo and/or David Bowie.

CBS News had promoted correspondent Norah O’Donnell’s interview with King, who replaced, on an acting basis, former Secretary Arne Duncan. There was a mention on the Saturday version of the morning news show that the King piece would appear Monday. Web and newspaper listings for “This Morning” also listed King for Monday.

But the capture of the Mexican drug lord known as El Chapo, along with the death of music legend David Bowie over the weekend, made Monday a pretty busy news day. It appears the King interview, a recorded package introduced live by O’Donnell, was bumped a day because of those stories or others. (The press representative for the show didn’t respond to an email seeking comment.)

O’Donnell’s piece did air on Tuesday morning, lightly pegged to the idea that President Barack Obama was going to discuss education proposals at his final State of the Union address that evening. (King got some good air time during the president’s speech, too.)

The “This Morning” package leads off with the controversy King faced when he rolled out the Common Core State Standards in New York state in 2013.

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Parents and teachers shouted King off the stage at a PTA meeting, O’Donnell reports, showing video from the event.

“You ended up cancelling further meetings like that?” O’Donnell asks him.

“Well, we restructured them,” King says. “So that meeting got to a place where it just wasn’t productive. Folks were screaming and yelling, it was hard to have a real conversation.”

O’Donnell and King visit Public School 276 in the New York City borough of Brooklyn, where King attended school.

“You went from this school to becoming the first African-American education commissioner, the first Puerto Rican education commissioner of New York. What does that mean to you?” O’Donnell asks him.

“I think it’s a testament to what’s possible if students have the right opportunities,” King says. “Teachers could’ve looked at me and said, ‘You know, here’s a African-American/Latino student, difficult family situation. What chance does he have?’ And they could’ve given up on me. But they didn’t.”

A version of this news article first appeared in the Education and the Media blog.