A comment by HT on MR’s mendacity

I hope HT forgives me for posting this:

“What is so bothersome about this is not the lies or self-delusion or resume-inflation, or even the public’s willingness to find another Jesus or angel-with-powers walking among us (or a hard-working and lucky stock-picker retired to become a hedge-fund manager.)

“What is troubling is that the school Rhee taught in WAS subject to an evaluation, as part of a serious research effort on the benefits and costs of private operation of schools and an examination of the differences in resources and ooperation. The ERIC document you were given to work with had the data. Nobody had to go through warehouses of moldy boxes to recover a principal’s work-sheet. These aren’t the spelling tests of children discovered in a non-custodial parent’s attic. They are part of an archived research report, paid for following a deliberative process with public funds as an extraordinary effort at the time to address a major and policy issue which is still with us today: private operation of public schools.

“So, the circumstances of the school Rhee taught in–, being subject to observation and statistical surveillance that would become part of a report on electronic or real shelves– were somewhat rare. Not many schools around the country are subject to special scrutiny for comparative evaluation purposes.

“You could say that this is just evidence that nothing gets learned. Obviously, little is remembered. But, much more went on here. People in Rhee’s orbit subsequent to her experiences in Baltimore could not have been expected to know there had been a formal evaluation of comparative student achievement in the TPS’s and the schools that were privately operated. They couldn’t all be expected to be interested in this earlier experiment in privatization. (Yes, my generosity borders on the naively preposterous, considering Rhee’s peers.)

“But, how about Rhee herself, and how about those in Baltimore, some of whom had to have remembered the education policy debate, the research protocol, the data collection, and the results of the evaluation? How could they all testify as though Rhee had been a lone TFA recruit, dropped into a huge but unexceptional school, noticed, maybe for her ethnicity, but otherwise no different from any other teacher who may have connected to her students before moving on, like an itinerant young physical therapist?”


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