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Fenty/Rhee: Notable Absence Of Reformy Reflection [upd]

ScreenHunter_51 Sep. 01 10.29 What did reformy types learn from the Fenty/Rhee loss in DC on Tuesday?  Not much, apparently - at least not that they're willing to tell to you.  A sampling:  The election wasn't really about Rhee (Sara Mead).  What Sara said (Rotherham).  It was the economy's fault (Yglesias).  It was the taxicab drivers' fault (Carey).  So much for insight, intellectual rigor, or honest reflection (though in fairness Yglesias does tag Rhee for arrogance).  What about those among us who aren't all past or current co-workers / romantic partners (but aren't rapid anti-reformers either)?    "Brash" reformers never last except for Klein (Perlstein). Winning over public school parents got left behind (Dana Goldstein). Back to the drawing board for reformers (Rick Hess).  UPDATE:  It was black voters' dislike of firings (Petrilli).


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It's interesting that you include Matt Yglesias in the list of "reformy types." My college-student son is a poli-sci wonk who follows Yglesias regularly and alerts me to his education posts sometimes -- and who views Yglesias as spectacularly clueless about education issues due to his privileged prep/ivy bubble and related general incomprehension. That is, his view is that the otherwise erudite Yglesias is out of his depth on this complex topic and has no notion what he's talking about, but occasionally takes a pathetic stab. Now you've lumped him in with the malevolent public-education- and teacher-bashers. Maybe he reached a tipping point.

Sara Mead relies heavily on the Washington City Paper poll to back up her position, but a commenter on Dana Goldstein's post points out the following (directly quoted):

"The poll you cite cannot provide an accurate assessment of DCPS parent attitudes. First, it consists of only about 64 interviews (8% of respondents). More importantly, only 42% of surveyed parents were Black, about half the true proportion of DCPS parents, while whites (43%) and Asians (6%) are both massively overrepresented. It’s also noteworthy that 85% of parents surveyed had attended college, including 74% with a 4-year college degree, much more highly-educated than the reality. (All of this information is available via the City Paper interactive graphics).
"The survey is at best telling you how highly-educated, non-Black parents feel. And given that Gray lead Fenty by 50 points among Blacks overall in the survey, it is exceedingly unlikely that a majority of DCPS parents in fact voted for Fenty."

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