Unfortunately, the Obama administration was all too willing to peddle the Gates-Broad bullshit to the detriment of public education.
For his education policies alone, I consider Obama a flop as president. His exit from public life can't come soon enough for me.
The editorial is still something, though:
Then the foundation set its sights on improving teaching, specifically through evaluating and rewarding good teaching. But it was not always successful. In 2009, it pledged a gift of up to $100 million to the Hillsborough County, Fla., schools to fund bonuses for high-performing teachers, to revamp teacher evaluations and to fire the lowest-performing 5%. In return, the school district promised to match the funds. But, according to reports in the Tampa Bay Times, the Gates Foundation changed its mind about the value of bonuses and stopped short of giving the last $20 million; costs ballooned beyond expectations, the schools were left with too big a tab and the least-experienced teachers still ended up at low-income schools. The program, evaluation system and all, was dumped.
The Gates Foundation strongly supported the proposed Common Core curriculum standards, helping to bankroll not just their development, but the political effort to have them quickly adopted and implemented by states. Here, Desmond-Hellmann wrote in her May letter, the foundation also stumbled. The too-quick introduction of Common Core, and attempts in many states to hold schools and teachers immediately accountable for a very different form of teaching, led to a public backlash.
That is putting it mildly. Obama administration directives were a serious overreach and in fact were and are impeachable offenses. Obama was simply lucky he had a GOP congress who believed just as he did about education.
Oh, and the billionaire foundations need to stay the fuck out of education. Charter schools, which the editorial seems to think are okay, are a colossal failure, a ripoff.
A few observers out there felt the need to remind readers of the paper's own culpability in promoting neoliberal bullshit education ideas.