Sunday Leftovers

Newark Superintendent Cami Anderson, who apparently has a new first name of “embattled,” signed a new three-year contract with Newark City Public Schools.  From the Star-Ledger: “Under the terms of the contract, Anderson will receive $251,500 for the 12-month period beginning Tuesday and an increase of 1.6 percent in the two subsequent years of the contract.”

From The Record: “Governor Christie is expected to make an announcement next week that lawmakers hope will slow down the administration's rollout of controversial standardized tests tied to teacher evaluations….'The bill is on hold because we're waiting for an executive order from the governor,' said state Sen. Jeff Van Drew, D-Cape May, a sponsor of the legislation." Also see the Press of Atlantic City.

Asbury Park Press: " Saying he was 'struggling to be effective' leading Asbury Park's school system, interim superintendent Robert Mahon handed in his resignation this week to a board with whom he said he had conflicting opinions about his role. The departure is the latest blow for the district that has struggled with student success despite spending more than $30,000 per pupil on education."

The Trenton Times reports that two Trenton school board members, just appointed by acting mayor George Muschal, have resigned.  “The resignations represent continued turnover for the board, coming during a week that saw its members vote 4-1 to ask the state commissioner of education to remove current President Patrice Daley and just a month after board member James Rolle stepped down.” Muschal said he was “shocked.”

After Camden Superintendent Paymon Rouhanifard announced the lay-offs of 241 school district employees, reports the Star Ledger, “[a] controversial bill to offer teachers and other school district employees in Camden pension incentives to retire early squeaked through the Legislature today… Lawmakers previously complained that the bill would put increased strains on the state’s already underfunded pension system.”  Also see NJ Spotlight and the Philadelphia Inquirer, which describes the retirement packages as "hefty."

NJ Spotlight reports that twelve charter school applicants are finalists.

Three independent charter school leaders in New Jersey question why their schools were shut down by the D.O.E. (NJ Spotlight). The editorial garnered 52 comments from parents of charter school students grieving  their children's academic and social loss. Lesson: charter schools are "neighborhood schools" too.

The Trenton Times: "In a state where home rule is deeply valued and fiercely protected, four school districts in Hunterdon County have done the seemingly impossible. They have willingly ceded control of their three elementary schools to create a regional K-12 school district."

N.J. Senate President Steve Sweeney comments on the new state laws that mandate that school districts include children with disabilities in athletic programs. Sweeney’s daughter Lauren has Down Syndrome.
We have to reshape the way people think about those with disabilities. We have to break down the walls of intolerance that people have put up around them.
There are stigmas, and we all know them, that exist and will continue to exist for generations unless we as a community continue our hard work and expand our reach and our goals.
Individuals with disabilities are our sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, friends, co-workers and neighbors. They are people we all know.
Lauren has inspired me every single day. I have watched her grow into a beautiful young woman and I could not possibly be more proud.