Urgency on education

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No increase in the charter cap. No urgency to put back into place an accountability system that Governor Patrick zeroed out in his first budget. No urgency whatsoever to do more than talk about the achievement gap.

This is when criticisms about “just words” begin to make sense. We have seen great gains in education, but none of it is attributable to anything this administration has done. For they have not done anything but talk about education policy. Consider the difference between the Governor’s record on education, as we head into year three, and the urgency of Mayor Adrian Fenty, of DC, who has made change in education the number one priority of his administration.

Perhaps the quickest way to get that sense of urgency in DC is to listen to Michelle Rhee before the Education and Labor Committee in July. A couple of quotes gives you a sense of the full scope of what she is after:

It actually puzzles me that the issue of rewarding teachers for their success rather than their seniority is a controversial one.

Rhee notes that she is seeking to make the

Most dramatic and rapid changes since the desegregation of our schools.

Finally, her impatience with the glacial pace of reforms is front and center in this line:

Our children have been waiting since long before 1954 for a just, challenging and equal education system.