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Video: "Teach For America Rap" On HBO Show

Here's the video I wrote about last week (lyrics and comments here), thanks to a reader and whomever uploaded it (here).  It's not as fierce as it might have been, delivered as it is by one of the show's silliest characters (Davis). But still an interesting hint of the pushback against "reform" making it into mainstream pop culture.  Next up?  A shrill version of Michelle Rhee making a cameo on The Simpsons.  


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chicago special ed advocate rod estvan posted these startling figures showing steep / disproportionate declines in black teachers on my chicago schools blog:

Just for those posters who are interested Teach for American has posted
information on the race of its "corps" members and this can be seen by
going to

According to TFA, in 2009 68% of its teachers were white. In 2010,
according to ISBE 50.6% of CPS teachers were white. If we go back in
time several years to 2007, we see then only 48.2% of CPS teachers were
white, if we go back a little further to 2005, we see that 47.9% of CPS
teachers were white then.

It gets even more dramatic if we look at the raw numbers. In 2005
according to ISBE CPS had 25,501 teachers and 12,062 of these teachers
were white. In 2010, CPS had 23,219 teachers and 11,749 were white. As
you can see CPS according to ISBE data experienced an overall decline
in teachers of 8.95%. But the decline in white teachers was only 2.59%.
Things were very, very different for black teachers in CPS. In 2005,
CPS had 8,849 black teachers and by 2010 CPS had 6,873 black teachers.
This equals a decline in black teachers from 2005 to 2010 of 22.3%.

I could find no clear CPS data on the number TFA corps teachers have
been in CPS schools from 2005 to 2010, but according to TFA its first
corps member went to work in CPS in 2000. The problem with TFA data is
that it mixes TFA corps members in traditional CPS schools with TFA
teachers in charter schools authorized by CPS. While it would in a
formal sense be wrong to attribute the precipitous decline in black CPS
teachers solely to the TFA corps, one would have to say the "TFA rap"
clearly had an element of truth to it.

Rod Estvan

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