When Michelle A. Rhee came onto the D.C. school scene last year, many advocates expressed optimism that she would shake up the system. Fourteen months later, they say they feel let down. Parents, educators and other advocates say that more centralized control has led to less candor with the public. There are fewer forums in which to express discontent, they say, and people important in implementing Rhee’s ambitious plans — parents, teachers and students — sometimes feel marginalized.
The word “transparency” comes up repeatedly in conversations with advocates: The system doesn’t have much.