Monday, December 30, 2013

Open Letters To ‘B-List’ Reformers I Know. Part 2: Elisa Villanueva-Beard and Matt Kramer | Gary Rubinstein's Blog

Open Letters To ‘B-List’ Reformers I Know. Part 2: Elisa Villanueva-Beard and Matt Kramer | Gary Rubinstein's Blog:

Open Letters To ‘B-List’ Reformers I Know. Part 2: Elisa Villanueva-Beard and Matt Kramer




On February 12, 2013, founder and long time CEO of TFA, Wendy Kopp, stepped down.  Two new co-CEOs were appointed, Elisa Villanueva-Beard and Matt Kramer. Elisa was a 1998 corps member and Matt had never taught.  Both were working as very high administrative positions in TFA before this recent promotion.
I was pretty surprised by this announcement.  I did not expect Wendy to ever not be the CEO of Teach For America.  I was also puzzled that neither of the new co-CEOs were required to relocate to be near the national headquarters in New York City.
Over the past four months they have co-written three blog posts on the ‘Pass The Chalk’ site which had points of view that I definitely object to.  The first was about a bogus study ‘proving’ that certain TFA teachers teach significantly more than their non-TFA counterparts (I analyzed that report here).  The second was about a bogus interpretation of the recent NAEP gains ‘proving’ that corporate reform strategies are working (I wrote about NAEP ‘gains’ here). The third was about their support for the common core (Me and others have written a bunch about the problems with the common core).
I’ve ‘followed’ them both on Twitter and also had an opportunity to meet them both at the national TFA headquarters this past spring.  I was invited to participate in a round table discussion with other TFA alumni at the New York City stop of the ‘listening tour’ that Elisa and Matt went on when they began their new positions.
Before the meeting I greeted both of them.  During the meeting, I had a chance to speak to the group, and I tried to use my time efficiently.  Matt commented that he reads this blog, which was nice to know.  After the meeting, I first approached Elisa and said something simple like, “It was nice to meet you.”  Then when I was saying good bye to Matt, who was a few feet away 

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