Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Harvard needs to address credibility issues

A timely report in the DC Examiner, brought to the attention of our readers by Lyda, gives credibility to the questions raised about Harvard's book (see here and here).

According to the Examiner, Weast acknowledged that "the graduation rates of black and Hispanic students, which have decreased at faster rates than their white and Asian peers." This debacle was, as first reported on PCMC, predictable.

Far more troubling is Weast's statement that ""… we continue to lose students … ." How much of that is attributable to the strategies and interventions specifically described in the Harvard book?

With a tip of my hat to a fellow PCMC member who brought this piece to my attention, I note the Harvard Gazette of October 15-28, 2009, contains this statement from the authors: "In writing the book, recalled Thomas, "Weast made us an offer that was hard to refuse": providing the authors 'full access to the schools' data and materials.'" The book makes scant reference to the said "data." Indeed, last afternoon, via an email the school continued to stonewall a request for the data that Weast, allegedly, so willingly offered Harvard.

Isn't it time for Harvard to address the credibility issues and get to the bottom of this fiasco? PCMC, proactively, provided a blueprint of what needs to be done.

Harvard, the ball is in your court.

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