WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 17:  Betsy DeVos, President-elect Donald Trump's pick to be the next Secretary of Education, testifies during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill  January 17, 2017 in Washington, DC. DeVos is known for her advocacy of school choice and education voucher programs and is a long-time leader of the Republican Party in Michigan.  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
PHOTO: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 17: Betsy DeVos, President-elect Donald Trump's pick to be the next Secretary of Education, testifies during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill January 17, 2017 in Washington, DC. DeVos is known for her advocacy of school choice and education voucher programs and is a long-time leader of the Republican Party in Michigan. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Now playing
02:11
Betsy DeVos is off to a rocky start
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 17:  Betsy DeVos, President-elect Donald Trump's pick to be the next Secretary of Education, testifies during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill  January 17, 2017 in Washington, DC. DeVos is known for her advocacy of school choice and education voucher programs and is a long-time leader of the Republican Party in Michigan.  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
PHOTO: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images North America/Getty Images
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 17: Betsy DeVos, President-elect Donald Trump's pick to be the next Secretary of Education, testifies during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill January 17, 2017 in Washington, DC. DeVos is known for her advocacy of school choice and education voucher programs and is a long-time leader of the Republican Party in Michigan. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Now playing
02:07
Betsy DeVos' controversial statements (2018)
SEN Appropriations Subcmte Hearing on Dept of Ed Budget, Betsy DeVos Testifies  LABOR, HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, EDUCATION, AND RELATED AGENCIES SUBCOMMITTEE (Roy Blunt, Chairman)  Hearing to review the Fiscal Year 2019 funding request and budget justification for the U.S. Department of Education  10:15 a.m., Room 124, Dirksen Senate Office Building  Witness: The Honorable Betsy DeVos Secretary U.S. Department of Education
PHOTO: POOL
SEN Appropriations Subcmte Hearing on Dept of Ed Budget, Betsy DeVos Testifies LABOR, HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, EDUCATION, AND RELATED AGENCIES SUBCOMMITTEE (Roy Blunt, Chairman) Hearing to review the Fiscal Year 2019 funding request and budget justification for the U.S. Department of Education 10:15 a.m., Room 124, Dirksen Senate Office Building Witness: The Honorable Betsy DeVos Secretary U.S. Department of Education
Now playing
01:25
DeVos: Won't look at guns to reduce school violence
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 17:  Betsy DeVos, President-elect Donald Trump's pick to be the next Secretary of Education, testifies during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill  January 17, 2017 in Washington, DC. DeVos is known for her advocacy of school choice and education voucher programs and is a long-time leader of the Republican Party in Michigan.  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
PHOTO: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 17: Betsy DeVos, President-elect Donald Trump's pick to be the next Secretary of Education, testifies during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill January 17, 2017 in Washington, DC. DeVos is known for her advocacy of school choice and education voucher programs and is a long-time leader of the Republican Party in Michigan. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Now playing
00:45
NYT: DeVos dismantles college fraud probes
CORAL SPRINGS, FL - MARCH 07:  U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos speaks to the news during a press conference held at the Heron Bay Marriott about her visit to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland on March 7, 2018 in Coral Springs, Florida.  DeVos was visiting the high school following the February 14 shooting that killed 17 people.  (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
PHOTO: Joe Raedle/Getty Images
CORAL SPRINGS, FL - MARCH 07: U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos speaks to the news during a press conference held at the Heron Bay Marriott about her visit to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland on March 7, 2018 in Coral Springs, Florida. DeVos was visiting the high school following the February 14 shooting that killed 17 people. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Now playing
02:12
Betsy DeVos' competence called into question
PHOTO: WCBS
Now playing
01:01
DeVos: Haven't visited underperforming schools
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos delivers remarks to employees on her first day on the job at the Department of Education February 8, 2017 in Washington, DC. DeVos was confirmed by the Senate after Vice President Mike Pence cast a tie-breaking vote Tuesday.
PHOTO: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos delivers remarks to employees on her first day on the job at the Department of Education February 8, 2017 in Washington, DC. DeVos was confirmed by the Senate after Vice President Mike Pence cast a tie-breaking vote Tuesday.
Now playing
02:24
DeVos struggles with school safety specifics
PHOTO: Pool
Now playing
01:22
Harvard students taunt Betsy DeVos
PHOTO: CNN
Now playing
01:26
Boos drown out DeVos commencement speech
Betsy DeVos DC school blocked vo_00000000.jpg
PHOTO: WJLA
Betsy DeVos DC school blocked vo_00000000.jpg
Now playing
00:53
Protesters block DeVos from entering school
President-elect Donald Trump and Betsy DeVos after their meeting at Trump International Golf Club, November 19, in Bedminster Township, New Jersey. Trump has offered her the Education Secretary.
PHOTO: Drew Angerer/Getty Images
President-elect Donald Trump and Betsy DeVos after their meeting at Trump International Golf Club, November 19, in Bedminster Township, New Jersey. Trump has offered her the Education Secretary.
Now playing
02:45
Who is Trump's education secretary pick?
betsy devos swear in education secy
betsy devos swear in education secy
Now playing
01:53
Betsy DeVos sworn in as education secretary
Betsy DeVos
PHOTO: CNN
Betsy DeVos
Now playing
01:38
DeVos: Confirmation drama was a bear
Betsy DeVos education secretary senate vote_00003830.jpg
PHOTO: CNN
Betsy DeVos education secretary senate vote_00003830.jpg
Now playing
00:58
Pence breaks tie to confirm DeVos
Betsy DeVos speaks during her confirmation hearing for Secretary of Education before the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee on Capitol Hill January 17, 2017 in Washington, DC.
PHOTO: BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images
Betsy DeVos speaks during her confirmation hearing for Secretary of Education before the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee on Capitol Hill January 17, 2017 in Washington, DC.
Now playing
01:46
Betsy DeVos appears to have plagiarized
PHOTO: CNN
Now playing
00:45
DeVos: Grizzlies can determine school gun laws

Story highlights

The Trump administration removed transgender protections

A source says DeVos opposed a draft of the plan

(CNN) —  

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos originally opposed a draft of the Trump administration’s plan for withdrawing guidance protecting transgender children in public schools, sources told CNN Wednesday.

Despite DeVos’ opposition, the Trump administration issued guidance as expected that revoked protections outlined in 2016 by former President Barack Obama.

Trump administration withdraws federal protections for transgender students

When the new guidance was issued Wednesday night, DeVos was publicly on board, though she added in a statement: “We have a responsibility to protect every student in America and ensure that they have the freedom to learn and thrive in a safe and trusted environment. This is not merely a federal mandate, but a moral obligation no individual, school, district or state can abdicate. At my direction, the department’s Office for Civil Rights remains committed to investigating all claims of discrimination, bullying and harassment against those who are most vulnerable in our schools.”

But a source outside of government who said he was familiar with DeVos’ thinking on the issue told CNN that “this is not what Betsy wanted to do.” The source said DeVos first communicated this to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and then was summoned to the White House on Tuesday for a meeting with Sessions and Trump, where she was told to sign on to the move.

DeVos reminded Trump that both he and she had publicly promised to protect all students, the source said, and that she felt this was not in accordance with those promises. She also asked for additional language to put in the letter that affirmed students would still be protected and the Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights would investigate issues.

Asked if DeVos was put in a hard spot, the source said Wednesday, “When the President tells you to do something you don’t want to do, that is a hard spot to be in.”

A second source confirmed there was disagreement and DeVos pushed back, saying she was concerned about the pace and some insensitivity toward the children. But she recognized that the President makes the decisions.

She also recognized that the administration was motivated by an upcoming Supreme Court case that deals with a transgender student and bathroom use.

The question for DeVos, the second source said, was how to unwind the previous guidance without doing harm to kids and making them feel like they were unprotected. DeVos plans to continue speaking about this issue with stakeholders, the source added.

In response to a question earlier Wednesday about a New York Times report saying DeVos and Sessions had opposed one another on the transgender guidance, White House press secretary Sean Spicer denied any “daylight” between the two Cabinet members.