The United States is known as a world leader in innovation, boasting brilliant thinkers and trendsetting companies, but that status is at grave risk. American children are well outside the top-ten international student rankings in reading, science, and math; those rankings-not to mention the nation's position of leadership on everything from the economy to the military to issues of moral authority-will continue to plummet unless we take dramatic action. Michelle Rhee, a driving force behind American education reform, is ready to make a change. In Radical, this fearless and pioneering advocate draws on her own life story and delivers her plan for better American schools. Rhee's goal is to ensure that laws, leaders, and policies are making students-not adults-our top priority, and she outlines concrete steps that will put us on a dramatically different course. Informing her critique are her extraordinary experiences in education: her years of teaching in inner-city Baltimore; her turbulent tenure as chancellor of the Washington, D.C., public schools; and her current role as an education activist. Rhee draws on dozens of compelling examples-from schools she's worked in and studied; from students who've left behind unspeakable home lives and thrived in the classroom; from teachers whose groundbreaking methods have produced unprecedented leaps in student achievement. The book chronicles Rhee's awakening to the potential of every child blessed with a great teacher, her rage at realizing that adults with special interests are blocking badly needed change, and her recognition that it will take a grassroots movement to break through the barriers to outstanding public schools. An incisive and intensely personal call to arms, Michelle Rhee's Radical is required reading for anyone who seeks a guide not only to the improvement of our schools but also to a brighter future for America's children.
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February 05, 2013
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