Our Rhee on Rose: The potted plant!


Charlie rolls over and dies: When Michelle Rhee appeared on Charlie Rose, she and her host swapped inane ideas about the best way to evaluate teachers.

Believe it or not, our greatest education reformer said this to our brightest broadcaster:
RHEE (2/18/13): The reality is that we have known for a very long time that we could identify great teachers and identify not-so-great teachers. You walk into any school building anywhere in this country today and you ask parents or kids or other teachers, "Who’s the best teacher in the school?" They’ll tell you. Say "Who—who is not so good?" And they’ll tell you that person, too.
The analysis gets a great deal dumber when you see it in its full context. To marvel at the state of our discourse, see THE DAILY HOWLER, 2/19/13.

Prepare to avert your gaze.

From there, the conversation continued. Before long, the host began asking the guest to tell him about the results she obtained during her years in the DC schools. The discussion started like this, with the host seeming to make the case for his embattled guest:
ROSE: I mean, obviously, you became polarizing to a degree.

RHEE: Yes.

ROSE: You know, but you could argue that the old expression is, “You’ve got to break an egg to make an omelet,” and therefore you had to break an egg.

RHEE: Yes, yes.

ROSE: You had to come in and say, “Look, we can do it differently.”

RHEE: Yes.

ROSE: But are the— What are the results? Because I always have a hard time— And help me with this, I mean I really don’t know.

RHEE: Yes.
Borrowing from deathless Joyce, "And yes I said yes I did yes.”

This wasn’t exactly a grilling. In this segment, Rhee has simply kept saying “yes” as Rose keeps making her case for her. And by the way:

There is no part of Rhee’s tenure in DC which is more controversial than the question of her “results,” since it’s tangled up with the cheating problem which seemed to be rather widespread.

By any normal standard, Rose should have done some homework on this score. Instead, he seemed to be asking Rhee to educate him about her results since he himself just didn’t know.

As the conversation continued, the inanity seemed to grow:
ROSE: What are the results? Because I always have a hard time— And help me with this, I mean I really don’t know.

RHEE: Yes.

ROSE: Determining success in education.

RHEE: Yes.

ROSE: Because I’ll pick up the paper tomorrow and it’ll say, “Charter schools aren’t as good as they thought they were.”

RHEE: Right, right.

ROSE: I pick up the paper the next day and they’ll say "Vouchers are terrific."

RHEE: Right.

ROSE: And then the next day you’ll have somebody come back you know who has a different political view and say, "No, no, no."

RHEE: Yes, it’s terrible, yes. And that’s why people, the American people, are so confused right now.

ROSE: Right.

RHEE: Because they hear me say one thing, they hear somebody else say another thing.

ROSE: They don’t know how to measure.

RHEE: That’s right. And then they say, “Well, who’s right? And I can’t figure it out.” And then they kind of disengage.

ROSE: Or what works and doesn’t work.
There is no doubt that Rose and Rhee are describing the way our discourse works. People hear competing claims. They aren’t sure which claims are correct.

Because he runs a major PBS show, one would think that Rose would have prepared himself before the session, so that he could help straighten out this confusion. In this case, such an assumption would have been thoroughly wrong.

In this case, Professor Rhee lectured Rose about her success. Her student just sat there and took it:
RHEE (continuing directly): So here’s what I would say. About D.C., we were only there for three and a half years. So did we accomplish everything that we wanted to? Absolutely not.

Did we make significant progress that outsized the progress the district had been making before? Yes. That’s–that’s unequivocal.

And if you look at the achievement rates of the children, we moved you know from a situation where about a quarter of the kids were on grade level in mathematics and reading in the elementary school to you know now over half. So still you only have half the kids—that’s not acceptable. But you know when— When you’re seeing that much progress, I think we can say that, that we were doing something right.
Rhee described a great deal of progress. Rose didn’t seem to have any idea whether her claims were correct. He didn’t ask her to name the program on which these gains had been achieved. He didn’t ask if these gains occurred on the city’s own testing program—the program on which the widespread cheating apparently had occurred.

In fact, Rose never mentioned the widespread cheating scandal that cast such a pall over Rhee’s tenure. He simply sat there as Rhee moved on to claim another success, this time concerning the way DC released ineffective teachers.

Did DC schools really show strong progress under Rhee? Did DC schools “make significant progress that outsized the progress the district had been making before?” Rose showed no sign of preparation—and he skipped the well-known, giant question concerning the apparent cheating scandal which occurred under Rhee.

Charlie Rose rolled over and died. He posed as a potted plant.

For what it’s worth, we recently compiled the test scores attained by DC students on the NAEP, the “gold standard” federal testing program, during Rhee's tenure. As best we could tell, DC students seemed to make no progress in reading under Rhee, fairly good progress in math. (Because of all the charter schools, DC is a bit tricky.)

That said, the progress in math didn’t seem to be better than the progress which was already occurring before Rhee’s tenure began. But such questions take us well beyond anything Rose attempted during his session with Rhee.

“Tell me about your great progress,” Rose said. Then, he rolled over and died.

To watch the full segment, click this.


  1. Bob, perhaps you should email a copy of your analysis to Rose.

  2. Has Charlie Rose ever asked a tough question of anyone?

  3. Ha ha someone has a crush on Rhee, Just like that Ben Smith clown !!!

  4. Ηerbal гaspberry kеtones medicines is tо consumе.
    For the аffiгmations to ourselves but аlso lightning fаst results?
    The best HCG rаspbеrrу κetoneѕ progгam, they dіscoverеd
    that chіlli haѕ gοt her makеover by
    undeгgoing auricular theraρу is nоninvasive, іt іs ѕodium-fгee, caloriе
    absorption. Get your move іnto morе detailѕ about thе underwire part and maintаin Raspbeгrу Ketonеs.
    Τhіs means you won't get those calories, your appetite and cravings to eat in unlimited quantities and add ice to blender. Break this fast moving world, has been touted as" calorie catch-up" the participants showed significant reduction in fat redistribution.

    Feel free to visit my weblog :: lose weight in two weeks
    Also see my site: where can i buy raspberry ketones

  5. The dіet and to eat bгeakfast. Herbal raѕpberry
    ketonеs ѕhοuld ceгtаinly proѵide
    a suρerior content of each exercise level. Which means this means that it is гeported by the bгeaκԁown
    of fat that surround the organs and systems to be tгue foг me I started
    changіng my diet results in more protein.
    Minimally invasive new гаspberгy ketoneѕ
    pгogram waѕ іnitiallу rejecteԁ Vіvus' drug Qnexa when it pertains to the walking exercise, skipping a meal for breakfast. It also has nutrition information database. Dr Jeff Breckon, a fit lifestyle.

    Also visit my blog - www.sparksarts.com

  6. Herbal rasberries aside, I've sent e-mail to webmaster@charlierose.com recommending this blog page, debunking Rhee for the propagandist she is, and requesting he interview Michael Hudson. Go thou and do likewise.

  7. The people who provide the money for Charlie Rose's show have no interest in any agenda other than the corporate schools' agenda.

    No one is willing to have a public discussion of America's public schools because such a discussion would require them to talk about poverty. Americans do not like to talk about poverty other than as an abstraction or in order to make moral judgments on people with whom they are completely unfamiliar.

    1. It's a slippery slope. First you talk about the root causes, then you'll have to talk some concrete solutions, then you'll have to pay higher taxes that won't go 100% to educate your own kids.

      In fact a lot of that money will go to poor brown or Spanish as a first language Hispanic kids, kids from homes led by single mothers, and other children of 'taker' constituencies. Better not to talk about it at all.

      Added bonus, the not talking about the root causes facilitates completely the 'blame it on the lazy, liberal union teachers' which alleviates the requirement by anyone to do anything but complain about the teachers and fully justifies paying lower taxes so that the commie liberal teachers union won't have credibility or even funds to educate those kids that 'aren't our kind.'

  8. Thanks for your post.it is a nice Potted Plants post.Potted plants are often grown in containers outdoors, on balconies or verandahs. They are also frequently found indoors, in residences and commercial buildings. Some of the flowers are grown singly while others are clustered in groups. Most do not require any particular care. A small number of them, such as bonsai trees, must be cultivated using specialized techniques.you can view more by this link.

  9. Information on potted plants. Find out what type of flower pots you need to learn how to pot plants. Tips in choosing garden pots and flower seeds and read about it. read more ...

  10. Hi there! I know this is somewhat off topic but I
    was wondering if you knew where I could get a captcha plugin for my
    comment form? I'm using the same blog platform as yours and I'm having problems finding one?
    Thanks a lot!

    Here is my page: http://pureraspberryketonereviews.org

  11. Esto es muy agradable website.They se venden en forma de comprimidos, cápsulas, polvos, té, extractos, y plantas frescas o secas. La gente usa las hierbas medicinales para tratar de mantener o mejorar su salud.

    compra maxidus