Cliff Notes Version of Gov-Hopefuls’ Education ViewsOctober 23, 2009
Joel Klein on Why We Should Differentiate Teacher PayOctober 26, 2009
Education accounts for the biggest slice of the state budget — $11 billion this year — and the biggest portion of property-tax bills in New Jersey, which are at an all-time high of $7,045, on average.
The state ranks second for per-pupil spending in the most recent comparison, $15,691 in 2006-07.
The state ranks first for preschool spending per student, $10,989 in 2008.
North Jersey editorializes that teachers should pay part of their health benefits: “Instead of municipal taxes going toward better services and roads, and school taxes going back into the classroom, most of taxpayers’ money now goes to making sure these employees have premium health care without having to contribute and can retire at 75 percent of their salaries.”
The Commissioner’s Annual Report on Violence, Vandalism, and Substance Abuse shows a 5% drop in violence, an 11% drop in vandalism, and a 14% drop in weapons violations, reports the Press of Atlantic City. But drug abuse increased 4%.
Arne Duncan says most college education programs are “mediocre.”
Tom Moran of the Star-Ledger ruminates on why voters shouldn’t dismiss Chris Daggett, in spite of the fact that his policies would lead to cuts in services:
Really, this is exactly the conversation New Jersey needs. Because if we want to lower property taxes, we need to give up services. Daggett is the only one facing that fact.
He says schools have to press teachers for concessions on health care and on salary, just as private businesses have done. He’s ready to change the negotiating rules to give school boards more power in these talks.
“Maybe it’s time to stand up to the influence of unions,” he says.
That’s what makes it so hard to dismiss Daggett, and what makes him so different from a fringe candidate like Nader: He keeps saying such sensible things
Bob Ingle of Politics Patrol reports that, in addition to the $87K that Corzine gave to Rev. Jackson in spite of vast differences in educational agendas, Corzine has also given almost $1 million to a non-profit controlled by Rev. Bishop David G. Evans who serves on the Turnpike Authority.
Dysfunctional School Board of the Week Award goes to Englewood School Board, who voted to appoint a permanent superintendent this week in spite of the fact that the action item was nowhere to be found on the agenda and Board President Henry Pruitt III said afterwards that he thought the meeting was to decide if the board would get any more public input before picking a candidate.