Eva, Rick, and Mercury LLC: Damage Control Strategies for Abusive Teaching and Water Poisoning

Written by: Mitchell Robinson

Primary Source : Keep Talking, February 16, 2016



Today’s Lessons…

1. Abusive teaching behavior has been documented multiple times at Eva Moskowitz’s “Success Academy” charter school network. Ms. Moskowitz never denies these abuses happened—she simply attacks the newspaper or journalist who reported the abuses.

2. The PR firm handling Ms. Moskowitz’s damage control here is none other than Mercury LLP—the same spin doctors retained by Michigan’s Governor Rick Snyder to handle the damage control for Mr. Snyder’s bungling of the Detroit Public Schools and Flint water poisoning scandals.

3. When caught abusing or poisoning children, hire Mercury LLP. They are the masters at deflecting, obstructing and distracting. Notice how we are only now starting to hear about lead poisoning in other cities and states? This is Mercury’s strategy to make it seem like Flint isn’t the only place this stuff is happening, and Success Academy isn’t the only school where teachers raise their voices.

How about instead of governors and charter school leaders spending millions on slick PR firms to cover their tracks, they spend that money on the children in their charge?  How about spending that money on replacing the lead pipes in Flint, Mr. Governor, instead of on hiring a high-priced PR firm in a lame attempt to salvage your reputation. And how about spending that money on professional development for teachers in Success Academy schools on how to treat their students with respect instead of on retaining a firm that specializes in lobbying and damage control for clients who find themselves in “difficult situations”?

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Mitchell Robinson
Mitchell Robinson is associate professor and chair of music education, and coordinator of the music student teaching program at Michigan State University. Robinson has held previous appointments as assistant professor and coordinator of the music education area at the University of Connecticut; assistant professor of school and community music education at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, N.Y.; and director of wind activities and wind ensemble conductor at the University of Rochester. Robinson’s public school teaching experience includes 10 years as an instrumental music teacher, music department facilitator and high school assistant principal in Fulton, N.Y.