The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release
Contact: Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167

NOT Waiting for Superman: What Kind of Education Reform Model Is Rhee?



Dingerson said today: "While [Washington, D.C. Schools Chancellor]
Michelle Rhee enjoys the media spotlight as 'Waiting for Superman' opens
across the country, voters in the District of Columbia had a different
message on her education reform agenda. On September 14, Rhee's boss,
D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty, was sent packing, after staking his re-election
bid on his chancellor and her reform agenda. Rhee's popularity in the
District has plummeted over the last year, as her 'reform agenda'
proved to consist of little more than teacher-bashing and firings.
Parents and teachers know the difference between reform that supports
schools and students, and reform that destabilizes schools, humiliates
teachers and shuts parents out of the process."

"Proving Grounds: School 'Rheeform' in Washington, D.C."
is a piece Dingerson recently wrote for Rethinking Schools. It states:
"There's nothing remarkably visionary going on in Washington. The model
of school reform that's being implemented here is popping up around the
country, heavily promoted by the same network of conservative think
tanks and philanthropists like Bill Gates, Eli Broad, and the Walton
Family Foundation [of Sam Walton, founder of Walmart] that has been
driving the school reform debate for the past decade. It is reform based
on the corporate practices of Wall Street, not on education research or

Rethinking Schools initiated the web page

Dingerson is an education policy consultant and community organizer, and the mother of two D.C. public school students.

Also see: Valerie Strauss's piece in the Washington Post titled "Is that so, Chancellor Rhee?"

A nationwide consortium, the Institute for Public Accuracy (IPA) represents an unprecedented effort to bring other voices to the mass-media table often dominated by a few major think tanks. IPA works to broaden public discourse in mainstream media, while building communication with alternative media outlets and grassroots activists.