ERIC Number: EJ960484
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Reference Count: N/A
The Case against Michelle Rhee: How Persuasive Is It?
Peterson, Paul E.
Education Next, v11 n3 p68-73 Sum 2011
Recently, two separate studies--one by Alan Ginsburg, a former director of Policy and Program Studies in the U.S. Department of Education, the other by a committee constituted by the National Research Council (NRC)--have sought to discredit the work of Michelle Rhee, former chancellor of schools for the District of Columbia. According to Ginsburg, Rhee was no more effective--probably even less effective--than her predecessors. Not surprisingly, his argument was quickly picked up by American Federation of Teachers president Randi Weingarten. In the second study, the NRC committee does not deny that student performance in the District of Columbia improved under Michelle Rhee's chancellorship between 2007 and 2010, but it says there is no scientific evidence that proves the work of the chancellor is responsible for those gains. The NRC study bears the more prestigious imprimatur, but it is the Ginsburg study that is most likely to be cited in future discussions of merit pay, teacher tenure, and the like. In this article, the author offers a critique of the two studies and begins with Ginsburg's contribution to the discussion. In all the numbers Rhee's critics have assembled, the two facts that stand out have nothing to do with test scores, but rather with student and teacher absenteeism. (Contains 3 figures.)
Descriptors: Evidence, Academic Achievement, Politics of Education, Superintendents, Administrator Effectiveness, Leadership Effectiveness, Achievement Gains, Research Reports, National Competency Tests, Achievement Gap, Educational Assessment, Educational Indicators, Administrator Evaluation, Administrator Role, Change Strategies, Educational Change
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: District of Columbia