So what happens when a President chooses a basketball buddy as Secretary of Education? Really, Obama… what did you expect when you chose a non-educator, non-expert to lead American education? A leader who left Chicago in shambles, whose school “turnarounds” didn’t work. Disappointed by his latest inanity at the Mom Congress, I have selected ten quotes from Arne Duncan’s reign as Secretary for a top ten.
It’s fascinating to me that some of the pushback is coming from, sort of, white suburban moms who — all of a sudden — their child isn’t as brilliant as they thought they were and their school isn’t quite as good as they thought they were, and that’s pretty scary,” Duncan said. “You’ve bet your house and where you live and everything on, ‘My child’s going to be prepared.’ That can be a punch in the gut. Source
Really Arne? You are going to attack the independent/swing female voters the Democratic party needs in coming elections? Over Common Core? You realize that TAMSA kicked policymakers’ a___ in Texas for similar antiquated and disingenuous thinking about high-stakes testing?
The vast majority who drop out of high school drop out not because it’s too hard but because it’s too easy. Source
Talk to students Arne. They will tell you that high-stakes testing is discouraging. They will tell you that class after class of test-prep is dull. See all of Cloaking Inequity’s posts on dropout here.
I think the best thing that happened to the education system in New Orleans was Hurricane Katrina. Source
Reformers ideas in New Orleans have been a failure. It’s just that simple. For more information and research go here.
We’ve been able to do things – for example, close schools for academic failure. It is hugely difficult, it’s hugely controversial and it’s absolutely the right thing to do. That simply does not happen in other cities, because of a lack of political will. Source
Turnaround hasn’t worked in Chicago or Texas or elsewhere. Why? Read here.
Teach For America made teaching cool again in low-income communities for a whole generation of talented college graduates. Its record shows that poverty need not be destiny in the classroom. When it comes to teaching, talent matters tremendously. Source
Despite receiving hundreds of millions of federal dollars, Teach For America (TFA) is not as good as advertised. As I argued in the New York Times, they are essentially a temp agency. Click here for more on TFA.
As you all know, KIPP has selected Houston as ground zero for education reform. It’s here where you are trying to create a critical mass, a tipping point of high-performing schools that will transform the entire Houston public school system. Source
Parent trigger is an important tool… There are lots of things parents can do…parent triggers are a piece of that. Source
There are purposeful and monied interests behind the parent trigger movement that are not focused on parental empowerment but instead have ulterior motives. See Parent Trigger
Essentially, the Times took seven years of student test data and developed what is called a “value-added” analysis to show which third- through fifth-grade teachers are making the biggest gains…The results may be soon posted on the newspaper’s website in a searchable data base by teacher name — taking transparency to a whole new level… I am a strong advocate for transparency. This is one thing that NCLB got right. Source
Value-added models are the opposite of transparency. The use of VAM models by policymakers may be the most convoluted conversation in educational policy today. See Politicians v. Experts: The Latest on “Value-added” Modeling
Diane Ravitch is in denial and she is insulting all of the hardworking teachers, principals and students all across the country who are proving her wrong every day. Source
Arne Duncan’s quote should read “Arne Duncan is in denial and he is insulting all of the hardworking teachers, principals and students all across the country who are proving him wrong every day.”
We’ve seen more reform in the last year than we’ve seen in decades, and we haven’t spent a dime yet. It’s staggering how the Recovery Act is driving change. Source
What’s really staggering is how ineffective President Obama has been on Education. Maybe because George H.W. Obama’s education platform: Republicans should be flattered and Democrats ashamed?
President Obama, please learn a lesson from President Clinton. He selected the best and brightest for his administration and dealt with the drama and disloyalty at a later date. Because you are hiring only those that you trust, they have turned out to not be the best people for the job and unable to execute (see also healthcare rollout). If Hillary was our current two term president, would Arne Duncan be the Secretary of Education?
p.s. Please feel free to include any Duncan inanity that I missed in the comments.
Please Facebook Like, Tweet, etc below and/or reblog to share this discussion with others.
Want to know about Cloaking Inequity’s freshly pressed conversations about educational policy? Click the “Follow blog by email” button in the upper left hand corner of this page.
Click here for Vitae.
Please blame Siri for any typos.