YEAR IN REVIEW: Winners & Losers (According To Me)
WINNERS: Obama campaign staff: they threaded the needle for 22 months and then (some) got plum DPC jobs. Win! Arne Duncan: from nearly-complete obscurity to the top education job in the country. Randi Weingarten: wins top AFT job, successfully blackballs Klein without having to admit to it, and prevents DCTA from giving away the farm. Jon Schnur: finally out ahead of folks like Kopp and Rotherham in the name recognition game. Broader Bolder: civil war a small price to pay for rebalancing the school reform world. Michelle Rhee: took the DC schools by storm and -- so far -- remains on top. Paul Tough: incoming President endorses book topic. Eduwonkette: a welcome ally against the think tank mafia. Bob Compton: "2MM" documentary took the world by storm (almost as much as Roland Fryer's "Learn To Earn"). Margaret Spellings: still a media darling until the end (somehow). Steve Barr: Union-charter model goes big in LA -- and in NYC. Cigars for everyone.
LOSERS: Joel Klein: dumped overboard by his DFER allies and blocked from a triumphant return to DC by his "friend" Randi. NCLB: from scapegoat to comic punch line. Linda Darling Hammond: hazed mercilessly by the media (and the Brat Pack) despite all her work for the campaign. Bill Ayers: "I wish I knew [Obama] better." EDINO8: bland platform and bad timing undercut innovative philanthropic effort and admirable effort. DFER transition memo: most embarrassing document of the year? Andy (Eduwonk) Rotherham: not such a wunderkind anymore. TFA: the AOL of alt cert programs. Education blogs (like this one): too many, too predictable, too much opinion and advocacy (and too little news). Education journalism: still too credulous and superficial (see Margaret Spellings and Arne Duncan above).
Got any better ideas? Feel free.