Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

When Michelle Rhee Attacks

Michelle Rhee's education miracle in Washington D.C. has been revealed as fraudulent - so how does Rhee respond?

With an attack, of course:

"It isn't surprising," Rhee said in a statement Monday, "that the enemies of school reform once again are trying to argue that the Earth is flat and that there is no way test scores could have improved ... unless someone cheated."

USA TODAY's investigation into test scores "is an insult to the dedicated teachers and schoolchildren who worked hard to improve their academic achievement levels," Rhee said.

Rhee, who said Monday night that the investigation "absolutely lacked credibility," had declined to speak with USA TODAY despite numerous attempts before an article ran online and in Monday's newspaper. Her comments were made during the taping of PBS' Tavis Smiley show to air on Tuesday night.

If Rhee thought the story lacked credibility, why didn't she go on the record with USA Today BEFORE the story?

Dunno, but she didn't.

She never does say why the investigation lacks credibility in any case, so clearly she is just trying to deflect the criticism from herself.

Notice the jive tools she uses - she says USA Today is attacking those school kids and teachers who worked so hard to increase their scores.

Except that this is not what the USA Today story does at all.

Instead it points out that there is a better probability of winning the grand prize in Powerball than having all those kids at Noyes Campus School erase wrong answers and bubble in the correct ones.

If Rhee has an answer for this probability (and the allegations made by parents that they complained about testing irregularities at the school but were ignored), she should say what it is.

But she has no response.

So she attacks.

She is the Michelle Malkin of the education reform world.

But now she has been exposed twice - first for her own scores in Baltimore, which did not hold up to scrutiny, and now for the scores in D.C.

There needs to be a TIME magazine cover with some teachers sweeping Rhee into obscurity and poverty, where she belongs.

Instead she continues to cash in on her celebrity and has been hanging out with all kinds of Republican governors.

Tonight Ohio governor and union-buster John Kasich is up.

Before that it was union-busters Chris Christie from Jersey and Lex Luthor from Florida.

But her fund-raising days may be numbered if she cannot respond to the USA Today article and the subsequent investigations with something better than "This is just people who hate reform!"

Because the facts are piling up, like little value-added data points, and they clearly point to reality that the Michelle Rhee education miracle in both Baltimore and Washington DC is horseshit.

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