THE BLOG
02/02/2009 05:12 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Education 2008: Winners And Losers


WINNERS:  Obama campaign staff:  they threaded the needle for 22 months and then (some) got plum DPC jobs. Win! Arne Duncan: from nearly-complete obscurity to the top education job in the country. Randi Weingarten: wins top AFT job, successfully blackballs Klein without having to admit to it, and prevents DCTA from giving away the farm.  Jon Schnur: finally out ahead of folks like Kopp and Rotherham in the name recognition game. Broader Bolder: civil war a small price to pay for rebalancing the school reform world. Michelle Rhee:  took the DC schools by storm and -- so far -- remains on top. Paul Tough: incoming President endorses book topic. Eduwonkette:  a welcome ally against the think tank mafia.  Bob Compton: "2MM" documentary took the world by storm (almost as much as Roland Fryer's "Learn To Earn"). Margaret Spellings:  still a media darling until the end (somehow).  Steve Barr:  Union-charter model goes big in LA -- and in NYC.  Cigars for everyone.


LOSERS: Joel Klein: dumped overboard by his DFER allies and blocked from a triumphant return to DC by his "friend" Randi. NCLB:  from scapegoat to comic punch line. Linda Darling Hammond:  hazed mercilessly by the media (and the Brat Pack) despite all her work for the campaign. Bill Ayers:  "I wish I knew [Obama] better."  EDINO8: bland platform and bad timing undercut innovative philanthropic effort and admirable effort.  DFER transition memo: most embarrassing document of the year?  Andy (Eduwonk) Rotherham: not such a wunderkind anymoreTFA: the AOL of alt cert programs.  Education blogs (like this one):  too many, too predictable, too much opinion and advocacy (and too little news).    Education journalism:  still too credulous and superficial (see Margaret Spellings and Arne Duncan above).

Got any better ideas?  Feel free.