Assembly Committee: Give Tenure Rights to Non-Tenured TeachersJune 26, 2009
Quote of the DayJune 28, 2009
Bobby Jindal Emulates New Jersey:
Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal is apparently a fan of N.J.’s Special Review Assessment, a test that N.J. high school seniors take after they fail the standard assessment three times. The Advocate reports that a member of the Board of Elementary And Secondary Education, Chas Roemer (son of former governor Buddy Roemer) publicly criticized Jindal’s “support for legislation that would offer public high school students a “career diploma” in a bid to trim the dropout rate.”
MyCentralJersey Supports Tougher Graduation Requirements:
Also bear in mind that New Jersey is well behind in making these changes, possibly because educators fear graduation rates for the Garden State — No. 1 in the nation — will slip as a result. More likely, those rates will now better reflect the quality of the job the Garden State is doing to prepare its children for the rigors of later life; nearly half the states have stiffened their graduation standards in recent years, many demanding more than New Jersey does.
U.S. Supreme Court Ruling Favors Parents of Special Needs Kids,
At least if they have lots of disposable income. The Court ruled 5-4 this week (here’s the ruling) that parents had the right to place children with disabilities in private placements without school district consent and then sue for reimbursement. Unclear how this squares with the Individual with Disabilities Education Act, which requires placement in the “least restrictive environment.”
Star-Ledger Features Series on Struggles of a Private Special Education School:
John Mooney’s 4-part series reviews the educational successes and bureaucratic tribulations of Garden Academy in West Orange, a school that serves severely autistic children for a tuition of $80,000 per year.
Loch Arbour Update:
The tiny village in Atlantic County has asked a Superior Court judge to “postpone implementation of the state’s new school funding formula to stave off a 400-percent tax increase for its residents,” reports the Star Ledger. Loch Arbour has been paying $300,000 a year for school taxes to send their few resident children to a nearby district, but if SFRA is implemented then the average household would see a property tax increase of $12,000 per year. Then again, the average home price is $1.4 million.
Asbury Park Press Says “No” to Public Preschools:
Mandatory preschool in the current economic climate makes no sense. Even in good times, the long-term value of keeping 3- and 4-year-olds in school for 6 and 7 hours a day — not counting the time getting there and back — is debatable. What isn’t debatable is that it will be expensive — $11,205 to $12,596 per pupil — and everyone will pay for it, regardless of the funding source…Taxes are taxes are taxes. Davy and her boss, Gov. Jon S. Corzine, aren’t taking the millions of dollars it will cost to babysit — er, teach — kids barely out of diapers out of their own personal bank accounts.
Dysfunctional School Board of the Week:
And the winner is the Sussex-Wantage School Board of Education, which voted 5-3 this week to press ethics charges against former President and current member Arthur Jacobs. Allegations are that he gave confidential information to former board members and a local newspaper and repeatedly accused the current Board President of nepotism, reports The New Jersey Herald.