Rhee’s D.C. Teacher-Evaluation System Is Working

Roundup: D.C.’s controversial teacher evaluation has improved teacher quality, according to a study from two well-regarded researchers.

Michelle Rhee, former chancelor of D.C. public schools and founder and CEO of StudentsFirst.
National Journal
Sophie Quinton
Add to Briefcase
See more stories about...
Sophie Quinton
Oct. 21, 2013, 5:57 a.m.

Every week, The Next Amer­ica pro­duces a col­lec­tion of edu­ca­tion art­icles that catch our eye. These date from Oct. 14-21.

Study Finds D.C.’s Con­tro­ver­sial Teach­er- Eval­u­ation Sys­tem Is Work­ing. The IM­PACT sys­tem — star­ted by Michelle Rhee when she was chan­cel­lor of Wash­ing­ton’s pub­lic schools — has caused more low-per­form­ing teach­ers to leave the school sys­tem and seems to have im­proved the per­form­ance of both strong and weak teach­ers, ac­cord­ing to a study by Thomas Dee of Stan­ford Uni­versity’s Gradu­ate School of Edu­ca­tion and James Wyck­off of the Curry School of Edu­ca­tion at the Uni­versity of Vir­gin­ia. Teach­ers judged ef­fect­ive, by classroom ob­ser­va­tion and test scores, re­ceived sig­ni­fic­ant raises.  The New York Times’s Eco­no­mix blog has a good re­view of the find­ings re­leased last week, while the Amer­ic­an En­ter­prise In­sti­tute’s Rick Hess in Edu­ca­tion Week of­fers some thoughts on what makes IM­PACT unique.

Al­most Half of Pub­lic-School Stu­dents Are Low In­come. Forty-eight per­cent of pub­lic-school stu­dents now qual­i­fy as low-in­come, com­pared with 38 per­cent a dec­ade ago, ac­cord­ing to a new re­port from the South­ern Edu­ca­tion Found­a­tion. In 17 states, more than half of chil­dren are eli­gible for free or re­duced-price lunches. Thir­teen of the 17 states are in the South. The At­lantic Cit­ies

Phil­adelphia Schools Get In­jec­tion of Fund­ing. Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett, a Re­pub­lic­an, has re­leased $45 mil­lion in state fund­ing to al­low 400 teach­ers, coun­selors, as­sist­ant prin­cipals, sec­ret­ar­ies, and oth­ers to staff the city’s cash-strapped schools. The num­ber of school nurses won’t be in­creased — a mis­take, ad­voc­ates say, cit­ing the death last month of a sixth-grader who suffered an asthma at­tack at a school without a nurse. Phil­adelphia In­quirer

Cali­for­nia Law In­creases Trans­fer Op­por­tun­it­ies for Com­munity-Col­lege Stu­dents. A Cali­for­nia law will give com­munity-col­lege stu­dents more op­por­tun­it­ies to trans­fer to Cali­for­nia State Uni­versity cam­puses — at least, that’s the goal. Fac­ulty lead­ers at both com­munity col­leges and Cal State say the bill signed by Demo­crat­ic Gov. Jerry Brown just makes the trans­fer pro­cess even more com­plic­ated. Ed­Source

Chica­go Sub­urbs Aim to Di­ver­si­fy Teach­ing Work­force. In Chica­go’s sub­urbs, there can be up to a 75 per­cent­age-point gap between the share of minor­ity stu­dents in a school dis­trict and the teach­ers in front of the classroom. School dis­tricts are fan­ning out to col­lege job fairs to re­cruit a more di­verse teach­ing force — but they face a chal­lenge, be­cause few­er minor­it­ies than whites enter the teach­ing pro­fes­sion. Daily Her­ald

CFPB Scru­tin­izes Ser­vi­cing of Stu­dent Loans. Bor­row­ers of private stu­dent loans sub­mit­ted more than 3,800 com­plaints to the Con­sumer Fin­an­cial Pro­tec­tion Bur­eau last year. Ac­cord­ing to the bur­eau, the ma­jor­ity of high-debt bor­row­ers have private loans. Private loans gen­er­ally have high­er in­terest rates and lack some con­sumer pro­tec­tions avail­able with fed­er­al loans. The New York Times

What We're Following See More »
Democrats Threaten Spending Bill Over Obamacare
2 hours ago

Democrats in the House are threatening to shut down the government if Republicans expedite a vote on a bill to repeal and replace Obamacare, said Democratic House Whip Steny Hoyer Thursday. Lawmakers have introduced a one-week spending bill to give themselves an extra week to reach a long-term funding deal, which seemed poised to pass easily. However, the White House is pressuring House Republicans to take a vote on their Obamacare replacement Friday to give Trump a legislative victory, though it is still not clear that they have the necessary votes to pass the health care bill. This could go down to the wire.

IN 2014
Pentagon Warned Flynn Not To Accept Foreign Payments
4 hours ago
One-Week Spending Bill On The Table
4 hours ago

Members of Congress are eyeing a one-week spending bill which would keep the government open past the Friday night deadline, giving lawmakers an extra week to iron out a long-term deal to fund the government. Without any action, the government would run out of funding starting at midnight Saturday. “I am optimistic that a final funding package will be completed soon," said Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen, R-N.J., chairman of the House Appropriations Committee.

Trump: I’m Not Pulling Out of NAFTA
7 hours ago

"President Trump informed Mexican President Pena Nieto and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Wednesday afternoon that he will not pull the U.S. from the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) despite reports earlier in the day that he had considered doing so. ... The three leaders agreed to proceed quickly with renegotiation plans as the initial review process comes to a close."

House Puts Yucca Mountain Back on the Table
7 hours ago

"A new bill to revive a permanent nuclear waste repository in Yucca Mountain, Nev., fails to address the concerns of Nevada lawmakers, suggesting the latest attempt may not resolve a 20-year impasse over the issue." The state's congressional delegation "shared their opposition to the nuclear waste policy amendment during a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee hearing focused on the legislation," and promised that Gov. Brian Sandoval would oppose it at every turn. "The new bill aims to finally use some $31 billion that has accumulated in the Nuclear Waste Fund, set aside in 1982 to collect specifically for a permanent repository."


Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.