A federal report card of 11 school systems this month showed math scores in D.C. schools are improving. In fact, only Washington recorded improvement among fourth and eighth graders in 2007 and 2009, but scores are still well below the national average.
This boost may give D.C. School Chancellor Michelle Rhee the proof that she needs, that her bottom line accountability is working for students, if not for teachers and administrators in D.C.
Still many of the system's larger problems remain.
In this report John Merrow, the NewsHour special correspondent for education, talks to Chancellor Rhee and some of her detractors about the efforts to turn the schools around for three years.
"She wants to do well. She's working hard; she's trying. But I can't confuse that at all with producing results." Michelle Rhee, D.C. School Chancellor
"We have to move the discussion away from hiring and firing of ineffective employees and begin to move the discussion to what kind of supports are we going to put in place in our district to support teachers and children." George Parker, Washington Teachers Union President
"We are shackled by the bureaucracy of the central administration of DCPS. I am amazed at the amount of money that gets sucked out of our school by the central administration." Mary Siddall, parent
1. Who runs your school? Who is that person’s boss?
2. What is accountability?
1. Do you agree with Chancellor Rhee that accountability is necessary in schools?
2. How would you measure student achievement?
3. Should teachers be held accountable for how their students perform on tests? Why or why not?
4. Why do some people want to become teachers or administrators?
5. Do you think it matters that Chancellor Rhee has never been a teacher or administrator? Explain your answer with details.
Read the transcript:
In-depth Coverage: No Child Left Behind:
D.C. Public Schools: