Andy Smarick's New Gig Starts on Aug. 2nd

We reported a month ago on Fordham’s Andy Smarick’s pending appointment as Bret Schundler’s Deputy Commissioner, but NJ Spotlight is the first of the mainstream media to announce Smarick’s new job. The article also parses the general reorganization of the DOE, especially noteworthy in the light of the Education Law Center’s skewering last week (see this post) of the department’s inefficiencies and dysfunction.

According to NJ Spotlight, three assistant commissioners – Willa Spicer, Barbara Gantwerk, and Rochelle Hendricks – will stay but be given new responsibilities. State Testing Director Timothy Peters is leaving and Spicer will head Standards and Assessments. Hendricks has the new title of Commissioner of the Division of School Effectiveness and Choice. Two people associated with Excellent Education for Everyone, a school choice proponent, will join the DOE – Valarie Smith and Eric Taylor. Also, Jessiana Gordon, former President of the NJ Charter School Association, will take a research job.

Here’s an organization chart.

Could there be a simpler signal that this is not your father’s DOE?

Also in today’s NJ Spotlight, I have an article on why we must reform our practice of laying off teachers based on seniority, not effectiveness.

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