Education Heavyweights Prepare for D.C. Contract Fight.
"There are a lot of people in the reform community who want her to wipe the floor with Randi," said one Democratic education activist who asked not to be named so he could speak candidly.
The record suggests that Rhee and Weingarten are far apart on core issues. Weingarten has supported merit pay based on schoolwide performance only and points to the program underway in about 200 New York schools. It is similar to one established by Rhee and the WTU that awards cash bonuses to staffs at schools posting the most dramatic gains on standardized test scores.
But the D.C. program is based almost exclusively on scores, an emphasis opposed by Weingarten, who wants to see other schoolwide metrics, such as attendance, taken into account. It's also not clear that evaluating teachers as a group will be sufficiently groundbreaking for Rhee or for the private foundations -- yet to be publicly named -- that she says have committed $100 million over five years to underwrite the huge raises she has proposed.