Lance Izumi asks, "Are the public schools serving New Jersey’s middle-class students performing well? Lots of parents think so. They believe that student performance problems are limited to low-income areas in the inner city — in places like Newark or Camden." However, "many suburban public schools serving middle-class New Jersey students are not performing as well as parents think."
Speaking of lack of student readiness, Mercer County Community College's new president Jianping Wang tells the Star-Ledger, "We must explore and create effective pathways for those students who come to us underprepared with different learning capacities, styles and even interests. All these require us to change, adapt and innovate, and most important of all, collaborate."
(Almost) bankrupt Atlantic City managed to pass along $4.25 million to the public schools, about half of what it owes, which is enough to keep the district open for now.
Meir Rinde explains how "a number of lawmakers are pushing for a change in the [broken school funding] formula that would distribute aid more fairly and help certain districts that have been overwhelmed by large increases in students."
Elmwood Park School Board member/bigot Gladys Gryskiewicz, reports the Record, wrote on her Facebook page that Muslims should “stay in your desserts [sic] and follow your religion in your own countries.” She is refusing to resign.
In tangentially- related news, the Trenton Education Association president demanded that her school board President resign after a flubbed superintendent search.
NJ Spotlight: "The topic of testing for lead in the water of New Jersey’s schools drew a big showing of political support yesterday, but ironically the discussion was as much about what’s not in the proposed law as what is."
Lakewood students who attend dismal district schools (most children in the city attend private Jewish day schools) may have options if the DOE approves two proposed charter schools: "The Ocean Academy Charter School would target 160 to 340 elementary school children in Lakewood. The Holistic Charter School for Behavior Therapy would be open to 18 to 36 elementary school students in both Lakewood and Howell. Neither district currently has any charter schools, which are funded with local school taxes." The Holistic Charter School for Behavior Therapy is trying again after its application was rejected last year. For NJLB coverage, see here.
Across the Hudson,
"Advocates and parents with the education reform group StudentsFirstNY are demanding that New York City release records of the roughly 1,100 public school teachers who are on its payroll indefinitely but don’t have a job to do." (The 74)
And from today's Post,
Despite evidence that hundreds of high-school students were put in sham “Project Graduation” classes in which they received no instruction, the city Department of Education rubber-stamped all the credits and diplomas awarded under the program, officials say.
That sheepish admission, which led an arbitrator to toss misconduct charges against ex-Dewey HS Principal Kathleen Elvin last week, proves the DOE will condone fraud to boost its graduation statistics, critics charge.