"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Michelle Rhee: Let's Go to the Videotape

Let's hope the judges in the Rhee case will have a look at this video as they consider the lawsuits, those that have been filed and the dozens yet to come. The choicest clip, among many, comes near the end, with Councilman and Rhee backer, Jack Evan, as arrogant bastard who cares not about the the intent of the law he is sworn to defend:
I don't believe that she overhired with the intent of firing teachers she didn't want there. I don't think that's what happened, and even if it did, so what? . . .
From the NewsHour, reported by John Merrow:


  1. When Rhee mouths the line she's "doing what's best for the kids", she is simply parroting a new slogan created in ultra-conservative think tanks. She's not alone. Joel Klein is doing it in New York City, Paul Vallas is doing it in New Orleans, in fact, every graduate of the Broad Center for Superintendents is singing the same tune. There isn't an ounce of sincerity in one of them, but especially Rhee! They do not even qualify as ideologues, they are flunkies who collect fat paychecks to do as Bill Gates, Michael Bloomberg, Jeb Bush and other super-rich men instruct them.

    These think tanks are places like the Hoover Institute where neoliberals slink around considering how unions, public schools and Social Security can be destroyed and the US can be transformed into a vast slave labor camp in their service.

    Since the DCPS is overwhelmingly populated with African-American children and other children of color, Ms. Rhee's comment implies that until she came along, no one cared for these children. No one cared, not their parents, not their teachers, not the men and women who represent their parents in political office, no one before Michelle of Arc.

    The fact is Michelle Rhee's hiring and tenure as the Chancellor amounts to a massive Madoff-like fraud perpetrated on the people of the District. The caper required a truckload of Bill Gates' money, a department store manequin as mayor, and the power of the Washington Post's Jay Mathews to manufacture a Michelle Rhee fairy-tale for public consumption.

    Lacking any discernible qualifications, her shocking appointment can be understood only when you realize that Michelle Rhee was brought in to create chaos at every turn and inflict maximum damage on the district's public schools and its children. The forces of privatization behind this campaign needed a cultist (Teach For America, New Teacher Project) and true believer in the job. Anyone else would have asked questions and refused to implement destructive policies. They could not be counted on to mindlessly take a sledgehammer to D.C.'s schools. The havoc that Rhee is now causing is no accident. It was the plan!

  2. Anonymous9:06 PM

    Rhee needs a career change opportunity.