'This Week' Transcript: Crisis in the Classroom

DUNCAN: In educate, we've been scared to spotlight excellence.

AMANPOUR: Duncan says that student performance and growth should also be used, that teachers are uneasy about having their work tied to student test scores.

(UNKNOWN): How are we going to assess teachers in different ways? Because testing is not the way, Mr. Secretary.

AMANPOUR: It's clear that teachers are frustrated.

(UNKNOWN): But why am I paid as if I'm the lowest of the low, when I have your child's mind in my hands more than you do?

AMANPOUR: Duncan supports paying teachers more based on how well their students perform. At a union rally in Louisiana, Duncan assures teachers that he wants them all to work together.

DUNCAN: We have to do so much more to elevate the teaching profession, to say thank you.


AMANPOUR: And Secretary Duncan joins me now. Also, President of the American Federation of Teachers Randi Weingarten and Michelle Rhee, chancellor of the D.C. public schools. She joins us from Sacramento, California.

Thank you to all of us. Let me go straight to you, because that last -- I saw you both nodding in that piece, where really you have to do more together to try to get the teacher situation and the classroom situation better. What can you do to make people like Randi Weingarten and teachers feel secure about how you're trying to reform and weed out the bad teachers?

DUNCAN: Well, I think we've had a fantastic working relationship. And let me be clear: I think Randi Weingarten is going to help lead the country where we need to go. We have to elevate the status of the profession. We can't do enough to recognize great teaching. We can't do enough to shine a spotlight on success. And we have to be willing to challenge the status quo together when it's not working.

And you're seeing that happen in district -- in district -- at district after district around the country thanks to Randi's leadership and courage. That's not an easy feat on her part.

AMANPOUR: All right. Well, you're speaking very nicely about each other for the moment. There's an issue that's just come out in Los Angeles, as you know. The Los Angeles Times has been investigating a school district there and has today put up data about teacher evaluation, student performance, all on the Web site, so it's accessible.

Now, you think that kind of data should go out, and you don't.

WEINGARTEN: Well, I think, actually -- I'll let the secretary speak for himself -- but I think the issue is, what we're all grappling with, is how you make sure that teachers are the best they can be. Failure is not an option, and I think what's happened is that we're all trying to figure out how to make teaching -- which has always been an art -- into an art and a science, which is why data is really important.

But what the L.A. Times did is they used this data, which is unreliable and is basically a prediction and an assumption, they used it in isolation of everything else. And so we said, let the teachers see it, let them use it. In fact, they are starting to do that in L.A., but don't publish it in this way.

DUNCAN: The tragedy in L.A. has been the teachers -- as Randi said -- desperately want this data and they've been denied it. Teachers want to get better. It shouldn't take a newspaper to give them that data.

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