It bears repeating:
Michelle Rhee’s reforms have been going on now in DC for nearly five years.
SHE CLAIMED SHE WOULD PRODUCE MIRACLES if she was given full, dictatorial powers to REFORM education in DC and in America.
FUNNY THING. THERE WERE NO MIRACLES.
She and a few other folks predicted that as soon as she got to DC and had full, unilateral control with no place for the public to interfere with anything, then heaven would descend to the educational earth, and miraculously, low-income children of color would all reach the magic 90th percentile in reading in math in DC. They also predicted that if we created enough charter schools to break the monopolies on education by evil, selfish, cynical, bigoted-by-low-expectations, unionized teachers and administrators, then student scores would rise like crazy.
Yea, verily, they predicted, miracles will happen as soon as we dangle fat paychecks in front of teachers to get them off their fat butts and up teaching like they were supposed to be doing all along… and then replace all the veteran teachers who weren’t any good at all, just lazy slobs (a euphemism) who were coasting to retirement.
Yes, they predicted! The scores will rise DRAMATICALLY!
Oh, yes, get rid of all of those veteran public-school teachers and things will be great!
The scores will rise! Or so they claimed.
None of that happened.
Instead, now 40% of all students going to public schools in the District of Columbia, are now enrolled at Charter schools. Where the scores look an awful like the scores at the rest of the public schools, especially if you look at the details (as depicted by myself and by a number of other bloggers).
AGAIN: WE GAVE AWAY THE ENTIRE STORE TO THE DEFORMERS. THEY HAVE HAD ALL OF DC TO MESS WITH FOR FIVE FULL YEARS.
WHAT DID THEY PRODUCE?
WHAT HAVE WE, THE PUBLIC, LOST?
* ANY CONTROL OVER ANYTHING.
* LOSS OF ANY FORM OF DUE PROCESS FOR TEACHERS AND OTHER PUBLIC SCHOOL STAFF.
* STUDENTS AND THEIR PARENTS HAVING EVEN LESS SAY IN ANYTHING REGARDING PUBLIC POLICY THAN EVER BEFORE.
* LOSS OF COLLECTIVE MEMORY IN HAVING NO UNIFIED PUBLIC SCHOOL SYSTEM.
* EDUCATION BEING REDUCED TO DOING TEST PREP ALL YEAR LONG FROM A SCRIPT, AIMED AT GETTING HIGH SCORES ON STUPID TESTS.
* TEACHER AND STAFF UNIONS UP FOR ATTACK.
* PENSION PLANS FOR ALL EXCEPT THE 1% BEING STRIPPED BARE.
* MORE YOUNG, INEXPERIENCED TEACHERS THAN EVER BEFORE IN THE LOW-INCOME SCHOOLS, QUITTING SOONER THAN EVER.
* KNOW-IT-ALL POLITICALLY-CONNECTED BILLIONAIRES, WHO NEVER WENT TO PUBLIC SCHOOLS, TRYING TO DEFORM PUBLIC EDUCATION ACCORDING TO SOME WEIRD NONSENSICAL SCHEME THEY DREAMED UP.