Archive for June, 2007

Glib self-promoters

June 28, 2007

Last Sunday, while I was driving north on Interstate 5 from Los Angeles to my home in Berkeley, I listened to an interview with Michelle Rhee, the newly appointed Chancellor of the District of Columbia Schools, on NPR‘s All Things Considered. I had never heard of Michelle Rhee and of course knew nothing about her. But I think I know a glib self-promoter when I hear one, and what Ms. Rhee had to say about her background — which includes absolutely no management experience and is limited to three years of teaching in Baltimore before joining something called The New Teacher Project — left me no doubt. (You can hear the interview by clicking on the Listen icon here.) She says that she “took a group of kids who were very low-performing academically… taught them for two years… through their second- and third-grade year, and just saw incredible gains in their student achievements.” She does not say us how she achieved this miracle, but that after she spoke to a group of parents they went up to her to tell her “We believe in you!”

In the future I’m going to write more about the pernicious role that glib self-promoters have played in managing the United States’ educational institutions and nonprofit organizations. In the meantime, my word to the taxpayers and the parents of public-school students in Washington, DC, is “Good luck!”

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Hello world!

June 27, 2007

Welcome to WordPress.com. This is my first post. I will start blogging once I learn some of the ropes.