Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Mike Klonsky's SmallTalk Blog: You say you want a revolution. Go to post-Rhee D.C.

Mike Klonsky's SmallTalk Blog: You say you want a revolution. Go to post-Rhee D.C.:

You say you want a revolution. Go to post-Rhee D.C.


Okay, now that I'm done FBing about #convfefe, I can get down to more serious business -- revolution. It seems a revolution had taken place in D.C. and I somehow missed it.

But Tom Toch didn't. Toch, a leading pro-reform, education policy expert and a highly regarded education writer, has published his study of the progress of school reform in the district, titled, "How D.C. Schools Are Revolutionizing Teaching." 

I'd say, it's about time somebody did it. But who?

Toch says, it all began with former D.C. schools chief Michelle Rhee, who,despite her various "mistakes," cheating scandals and unfortunate picture on the cover of Time Magazine, got the ball rolling. But Toch's study concludes that it was her successor chancellors who carried the rev forward, bringing radical changes to the teaching profession and miraculous gains in student achievement. DCPS has not merely revolutionized teaching, says Toch; it has created a "reform blueprint" for the rest of us to follow.

No credit given to teachers, of course. In fact, Toch clearly sees bad teachers and their over-protective unions as the problem, and different performance-based evaluations with high stakes attached as the revolutionary solution.

According to Toch:

Building on Rhee’s early work, and learning from her mistakes, her successors have effectively transformed it into a performance-based profession that provides recognition, responsibility, collegiality, support, and significant compensation—features that policy experts, including many of Rhee’s harshest critics, have long Mike Klonsky's SmallTalk Blog: You say you want a revolution. Go to post-Rhee D.C.:

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