The school system is doing "an abysmal job," said Ms. Rhee, who has been on the job for 17 months. According to Department of Education data, about 60% of the district's high-school students finish in four years with a diploma. By comparison, nearby suburban districts have a graduation rate of 78%. More telling: In some Washington, D.C., high schools, only about 6% of the sophomores can read or do math on grade level.
While she is realistic that children in her school district come to school with "significant challenges," Ms. Rhee said it is "complete crap" that those students can't perform at a high level because of their environments. "It's easy to blame external factors as the reason why poor minority kids aren't achieving at the same level. It's a false premise. You have to put supports and mechanisms in place around those kids, but I refuse to allow the adults in the system to use that as an excuse."
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
I think I have a new hero
Her name is Michelle Rhee. From today's WSJ: