Thursday, September 16, 2010

Leonie Haimson KO's Tweed in a Knockdown

I have rarely felt sympathy for BloomKlein. But the bludgeoning they took from Leonie Haimson at NY Law School where she appeared with the DOE's Chief Accountability Officer Shael Suransky almost made me feel sorry for them. Almost. Her amazing Powerpoint presentation was not directed at Suransky who seems to be well-liked and personality wise is an enormous improvement over his predecessor Jim Liebman (Suransky at least can claim some creds based on real teaching - he claims- in a NYC middle school) but took apart the entire ed deform program, point by point.

 Value added? POW!

Merit pay? SLAM:

Class size as one of the few true ed reform solutions? WHAP!

I was sitting next to Lisa Donlan and she kept saying, "Did you get that?" I missed so much but was trying to write as much down as I could during Leonie's 15 minutes. Now I have to get her to do an audio over her PowerPoint and put it up on the web. It could become a classic ed deform rebuttal.

The reaction of the people who organized the event at the Law School was curiouser and curiouser.
Terming the event a "Smackdown" by Gotham's Elizabeth Green probably didn't help. Leonie invited her thousands of friends to come and observe but most of them were working in and out of schools. We counted 16 that did show and 3 for the other side. I have a longer tale to tell about the press ban and the incredibly nasty PR person and Dean we encountered - the extent they threatened to call security on me - at least twice. I was bucking for a 3rd time when they finally let us in. We have hints of DOE interference to try to keep this from getting out to the public, but more about that in a follow-up.


  1. I would LOVE to see that powerpoint. I totally support her being pestered until that thing is all over the internet!

  2. we must expose this mess at all times, thank you for the story


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