We can't overcome the past until we make radical changes in the way too many Americans are forced to live, as well as in our ways of using school.
Referring to No Child Left Behind, now in effect for nine years, the committee held that there were some school-level effects, "but the measured effects to date tend to be concentrated in elementary grade mathematics, and the effects are small compared to the improvements the nation hopes to achieve."
The odds are that he believes every word he writes; another reminder of how much what we take for granted depends on our particular experiences. Maybe these guys DO constantly run into teachers who are fans of Michel Rhee, as they claim.
There are certainly schools that have made genuine gains in test scores and graduation rates, and they deserve recognition and commendations because their success defeats the odds. But the odds remain decidedly against children who grow up in poverty, without adequate healthcare, housing, nutrition, and support.
Staying close and observing closely has advantages. But staying close also has disadvantages: one isn't as prepared as one should be for the larger political context.