Lots of interesting “stuff” this week and last, from Michelle Rhee’s new troubles to new studies showing that Ed Reform may not be quite what it’s cracked up to be.
Here’s Valerie Strauss:
“Many people paying attention to corporate-based school reform in recent years will not be surprised by this, but a new study on the effects of this movement in Washington, D.C., New York City and Chicago concludes that little has been accomplished and some harm has been done to students, especially the underprivileged.
“The report looks at the impact of reforms that have been championed by Education Secretary Arne Duncan and other well-known reformers, including Michelle Rhee, the former chancellor of D.C. Public Schools, and, in New York City, Joel Klein, the former chancellor of New York City Public Schools and Mayor Michael Bloomberg. It says:
The reforms deliver few benefits and in some cases harm the students they purport to help, while drawing attention and resources away from policies with real promise to address poverty-related barriers to school success…”
And here’s a great piece by John Merrow on Michelle Rhee’s “reign of error:”
“With the indictment of former Atlanta School Superintendent Beverly A. Hall and 34 other public school employees in a massive cheating scandal, the time is right to re-examine other situations of possible illegal behavior by educators. Washington, DC, belongs at the top of that list.
“Michelle A. Rhee, America’s most famous school reformer, was fully aware of the extent of the problem when she glossed over what appeared to be widespread cheating during her first year as Schools Chancellor in Washington, DC. A long-buried confidential memo from her outside data consultant suggests that the problem was far more serious than kids copying off other kids’ answer sheets. (‘191 teachers representing 70 schools’). Twice in just four pages the consultant suggests that Rhee’s own principals, some of whom she had hired, may have been responsible (‘Could the erasures in some cases have been done by someone other than the students and the teachers?’)…”