Jersey serves as an example of how money alone, absent reform, does little to help failing schools. A series of court orders has forced the state to funnel billions of dollars into 31 urban districts (the total’s now about $4 billion a year), with little impact on student achievement. Camden has a whopping $340 million budget for a system serving 13,000 students (more than $26,000 per student), yet 26 of the city’s schools failed to make adequate progress last year toward federal education requirements. In Newark, only about 42 percent of eighth graders were deemed proficient on recent state math assessment tests.
Steven Malanga, senior editor of the Manhattan Institute’s City Journal, in the New York Post.