Excerpts from; The Activist Handbook. Second edition. 2013. Reprinted with permission.
Michelle Rhee, chancellor for Washington, D.C., schools from 2007-2010, is the front person for elite attacks on teacher unions and public schools. Local school superintendents rarely become national figures, but Rhee appeared on the cover of Time magazine holding a broom to signify plans to sweep away teacher tenure. ..
By 2012 Rhee toured the nation promoting charter schools and vouchers, assessing teachers based on their students’ test scores, and most important condemning the evils of teacher unions. Rhee made more than 150 public appearances in 2011-2012, reportedly getting as much as $50,000 per speech plus “first-class expenses.” It’s a pretty good deal for an educational “reformer” whose reputation is based on her controversial tenure as D.C. Chancellor. Rhee closed schools, fired over half of the teachers, and tried to eliminate tenure….
Prominent educator Diane Ravitch has explained the Rhee phenomenon:
“This formula which will be a tragedy for our nation and for an entire generation of children, is now immensely popular in the states and the Congress. Most governors endorse it. The big foundations endorse it. “
Shaw then goes on to list some of the major foundations funding Rhee. These have been listed here in prior posts. See also http://www.californiaprogressreport.com/site/anti-teacher-union-“reformers”-hoisted-own-petard
Shaw then goes on to describe what he sees as an effective media fight back strategies taking on Rhee and the billionaires supporting Rhee style “reforms”. This is a valuable guide to education activists who oppose the Right Wing assault.
The Activist Handbook. Second Edition.