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.

For my review of the book, click here, and for a review by Bill Turque, my colleague who covered her tenure as D.C. schools chancellor, click here.

Here’s the letter I (and no doubt many others) received from Rhee selling her book:

Dear Valerie —
When I first started out in education, I had no idea just how challenging — and how rewarding — my path would be.
The road from a second-grade classroom at an inner-city Baltimore school to founding The New Teacher Project and running D.C.’s public schools was anything but easy. I saw first-hand how we fall behind on critical issues in public education: why income and achievement are so closely linked; why teachers who excel aren’t recognized appropriately; and why education isn’t at the forefront of every lawmaker’s agenda.


In many ways, my early teaching years and the journey we’ve taken at StudentsFirst over the past two years are very similar. Both experiences have taught me so much about the power that teachers, parents, and administrators have to make a difference in the lives of students and have made me acutely aware of what aspects of public education still need improvement.



Learn how I became a reformer. Read and share an excerpt from “Radical”:


Thank you for being in this fight with me,
Michelle Rhee
Founder and CEO, StudentsFirst