"A child's learning is the funtion more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Duncan and Obama Enabling Christie's Public Demolition Projects

Jersey Roundup:
On a day when the NJ Supreme Court heard a challenge to Governor Christie’s $1.6 billion in school aid cuts, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan came to Newark and failed to offer support for full funding of the state’s public schools. Instead he embraced Governor Christie as a “partner” in his education reform efforts. Christie has prioritized huge spending cuts, vouchers, charters, merit pay, and the elimination of tenure.
Duncan held a town hall meeting with Newark Mayor Cory Booker to promote a federal teacher recruitment program. But in addition to ignoring the funding issue, Duncan did not address the sharp debate in Newark about the direction and control of school policy. The role of the Mayor, the State and private foundations and consultants has led to sustained public protests and calls for greater transparency and community involvement in decision-making.
After his Newark appearance, Duncan met with Governor Christie, whose attacks on teacher unions and school budgets have drawn national attention. "Secretary Duncan and I have a lot of common views and interests on the school reform agenda,” Christie said. What he and the president are doing is making possible the kind of reforms that are happening in New Jersey.” 
Gov. Christie says he agrees 'wholeheartedly' with Obama's education reform efforts
http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2011/04/gov_christie_calls_himself_an.html
"Secretary Duncan and I have a lot of common views and interests on the school reform agenda," Christie said. "What he and the president are doing is making possible the kind of reforms that are happening in New Jersey, that are happening in other states. I agree wholeheartedly with the president's efforts in this regard," Christie said
Gov. Christie's legal team tells N.J. Supreme Court to keep hands off education dollars
http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2011/04/gov_christies_legal_team_tells.html
With former Supreme Court Justice Peter Verniero leading the charge, the Christie administration basically told the state’s highest court it should step aside and let the other two branches of government handle school funding
As Abbott Returns to Supreme Court, Familiar Faces Play Pivotal Roles
http://www.njspotlight.com/stories/11/0421/0059/
The court -- just five justices sitting -- was hearing oral arguments over the latest Abbott challenge and whether Gov. Chris Christie’s and the legislature’s $1 billion in state aid cuts this year left schools unable to provide the "through and efficient" education the state constitution requires. 
New Jersey Supreme Court should stand by Abbott
By Avidan Cover
http://www.northjersey.com/news/opinions/120261504_New_Jersey_high_court_should_stand_by_Abbott.html
What is indisputably at stake is New Jersey's long commitment to narrowing the achievement gap between wealthy white students and poor black and Latino students.
Most NJ residents want more education spending, but not by Supreme Court order
Quinnipiac University Polling Institute
http://www.northjersey.com/news/education/042111_Poll_Most_NJ_residents_want_more_education_spending_but_not_by_Supreme_Court_dictate.html
Sixty percent of voters said schools should get more money, compared to 36 percent who disagreed. Meanwhile, 53 percent said the court should not order more spending, as opposed to 42 percent who want the court's involvement.

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