Is this putting students first? Michelle Rhee's new memoir is set to go on sale Tuesday and she is already trying to hawk it, using the website of her school reform organization, StudentsFirst, to attract buyers. The site has a free excerpt, which I found out about when I received the letter below from Rhee.
This past week No Child Left Behind turned 11 years old and Michelle Rhee made big news with a "report card" that judged states on how well they implemented policy of which she approves. Here is a look at what connects them.
A documentary on Michelle Rhee that was broadcast on PBS' Frontline this week delved into allegations of standardized test cheating during her tenure as D.C. schools chancellor. Rhee downplayed the allegations and D.C. Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson called the allegations “fictitious.” and pointed to a series of investigations that have yielded no evidence of large-scale cheating. Critics say the probes were too narrow. Journalist John Merrow, who was the force behind the documentary, provides more information here about the former D.C. principal who complained about cheating.
The PBS show "Frontline" on Tuesday night aired John Merrow’s documentary on Michelle Rhee, which focused on the 3 1/2 years she was chancellor of D.C. Public Schools. There is sure to be a variety of opinions on what it said and what it didn't say. Below is the reaction of education historian Diane Ravitch, the preeminent voice in the growing opposition to Rhee's style of school reform.
StudentsFirst, her lobbying organization that has taken aim at teachers unions, just released a "reform" report card that grades states on whether they have followed the reforms that she likes. That means that D.C. schools did better than Maryland and Virginia. Really. Here's more about the report card and what else Rhee is up to.
In October, a former teacher and education activist named Greg Harris was tapped as director of StudentsFirst Ohio, part of former D.C. public schools chancellor Michelle Rhee's national anti-union education advocacy organization. But not long before that, he had been decidedly anti-Rhee, publicly attacking her involvement in Ohio school reform. "If students truly did come first, then why is Rhee using her celebrity to coddle the very governors who are ransacking education funding?," he asked in a scathing blogpost in 2011.
Michelle Rhee has written a memoir that gives her version of reality about the years (2007-2010) that she ran D.C. Public Schools and became a national leader of corporate-based school reform. The book is due out next year but Washington City Paper's Loose Lips has already read it and describes it in less than flattering terms. Here are some of the highlights.