The Making of an Education Reformer
In 2007, Washington D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty tapped Michelle Rhee to be chancellor of district schools and turn around the failing local school system. Rhee had already built a reputation as an uncompromising reformer, and the move boded well for the district’s children. But as she recounts in her compelling new memoir, Radical: Fighting to Put Students First, the press conference at which Fenty formally announced her hiring wasn’t exactly a triumphant scene. A few attendees clapped, but most watched in puzzled silence. Rhee recalls thinking at the moment that “there would be no opportunity to mend fences or smooth ruffled feathers.” Rhee is a public figure with a fraught professional history.
About the Author
Sohrab Ahmari, an alumnus of Teach For America, is assistant books editor of the Wall Street Journal.