Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Michelle Rhee & StudentsFirst

It is great to see that former D.C. school leader, Michelle Rhee has launched a new and exciting initiative.

She recently announced the formation of StudentsFirst.org. The new organization is a nationwide effort to bring interested parties together to support education reform.

Her stated mission is to: build a national movement to defend the interests of children in public education and pursue transformative reform, so that American has the best education system in the world.

The core beliefs of the organization are:

1. Great teachers can make a tremendous difference for students of every background; all children deserve outstanding teachers.

2. Attending a great school should be a matter of fact, not luck; every family should be able to choose an excellent school.

3 Public dollars belong where they make the biggest difference-on effective instructional programs; we must fight ineffective practices and bureaucracy.

4. Parent and family involvement is key to increased student achievement, but the entire community must be engaged in the effort to improve our schools.

These four beliefs make sense to me.

Nationally, Ms. Rhee has her critics. Some claim her only focus is high-stakes testing, merit pay, closing schools and opening charters. I do not buy that framing of this initiative, or her past work.

At any rate, I am pleased to have joined this new initiative. The stated mission and beliefs are consistent with this site, and what I believe is the right focus for improving learning for all students.


1. I have created a link to StudentsFirst.org under the links section of Learn to Learn for your easy use.
2. We have established a group on the StudentsFirst site called "Black Americans for School Reform." Check us out and please consider joining our group.
3. For more information check out the new site at: http://www.studentsfirst.org

Congratulations to Ms. Rhee on the new initiative. I think it is right for the current time, and will no doubt help drive improved academic performance.

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