With guest, Louder Than a Bomb poet Nate Marshall

Monday, August 24, 2009

Rhee's list

How NOT to fix schools

Goofball D.C. Chancellor Michelle "Never Taught" Rhee (with broom at left) hired the consulting firm Insight Education Group to help her create an easily-measurable list of good teaching components, such as:
A highly skilled teacher should never have more than five instances of "inappropriate or off-task behavior" by students within a half-hour of class time. At least three times in that span, an instructor should respond to students' correct answers by "probing for higher-level understanding" of the idea being discussed (Washington Post).
More on Rhee from the Washington Post story:
Rhee's first two years at the helm of the 45,000-student system brought major upheaval, including school consolidation and closure, principal turnover, dismissal of central office staff and contentious contract negotiations with the teachers' union. Those talks are ongoing after nearly 22 months.


  1. A highly skilled teacher should never have more than five instances of "inappropriate or off-task behavior" by students within a half-hour of class time.

    Questions for Rhee: How will you monitor the exact number of "inappropriate" student behaviors each half-hour in my classroom?

    If there are fewer than 5, will I receive more performance pay?

    If there are 6, will my pay be docked?

  2. Question: When does the highly skilled teacher or instructor actually begin to teach, based upon this Insight Education Group model?

    Question: Within this model, where is the creativity and the acknowledgement that learning is a process and not a one time event?

    Question: Where is the acknowledgement that many students, especially those in poor and/or urban areas, come to school with an assortment of issues that will cause a classroom, even one with a highly skilled teacher, to experience more than 5 inappropriate or off-task student behaviors within a 30 minute period ?

  3. I am a parent of three DC Public School kids. And I am quite thankful for Rhee, Lew, and Fenty. The difference in the last few years in our classrooms, school facilities, principal, and teaching corps has been virtually remarkable. The WTU, which sent its top brass to prison for bilking MILLIONS of dollars from the union, is a slow negotiator and is riven by factions. The teachers union, and I say this with regret as a long time union member, has not been a productive partner for change.

  4. Don't forget "resume-faking" in your characterization of Rhee. If another public official had made such obviously false claims on his/her resume, the press would be all over it. But for some reason they've chosen to let her outrageous lies about the supposed miracles she achieved in her few weeks' teaching in Baltimore go unchallenged.


Agree? Disagree? Let me hear from you.