|3-1-16 Education in the News|
NJ Spotlight-- State Approves Only Three New Charter Schools, Gives OK to 16 Expansions
The Christie administration’s shift from approving new charter schools to expanding existing ones saw maybe its biggest surge yet yesterday, as the department announced 16 more charter expansions and just three new schools.
But there were some interesting twists in the announcement. The department approved expansion plans for some of the state’s largest and highest-profile charter networks yet turned down several smaller schools with similar aspirations.
John Mooney | March 1, 2016
Star Ledger - Christie approves more charter schools, expansions
‘…Charter schools are public schools operated independently from traditional school districts. When students leave their home school for a charter school, the school district must give the charter school most of the per-pupil funding it would have spent on those students. Since taking office in 2010, Gov. Chris Christie has authorized dozens of new charter schools, and the new openings will bring the state's total to 92. Christie has also closed 17 charter schools for academic, operational or financial deficiencies…'
NJ.com--More N.J. students are passing this important test
The percentage of New Jersey students passing a test to earn college credits in high school grew again in 2015, according to new data from the College Board.
Across the state, 26.1 percent of students in the Class of 2015 scored a 3 or better on at least one Advanced Placement (AP) exam during their high school career. That's up from 24.9 percent in 2014 and 15.7 percent in 2005.
Adam Clark | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com |February 29, 2016 at 12:04 PM, updatedFebruary 29, 2016 at 1:27 PM
The Bond Buyer - Supreme Court Lets Christie Pension Veto Stand ‘…action leaves standing a June 8, 2015 ruling by the New Jersey Supreme Court that upheld Christie's veto of $1.57 billion in pension contributions from the 2015 budget. That 5-2 ruling reversed a lower court decision by State Superior Court Judge Mary Jacobson that had said union members were entitled to the full pension contributions. The state's highest court said that a section of Christie's 2011 pension reform law that called for ramp-up of the state's pension system over a seven-year period was not legally enforceable… "The decision from the Supreme Court reduces some of the state's liquidity crunch and gives them far more budget flexibility," said Standard & Poor's analyst John Sugden. "It's one less hurdle they need go through, but it doesn't solve how to deal with their pension problem."… ‘
BY ANDREW COEN FEB 29, 2016 3:11pm ET
The Record--U.S. Supreme Court declines to hear N.J. pension case
The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to rule on a legal dispute between Governor Christie and New Jersey public labor unions suing over billions of dollars in missed payments to the state pension system.
The court’s announcement Monday capped a furious two-year legal battle in New Jersey over one of its biggest financial problems: the notoriously underfunded pension system for nearly 800,000 public workers and retirees.
The decision means that — unless New Jersey voters approve a constitutional amendment to guarantee pension funding — New Jersey governors and lawmakers have discretion over how much money to send to the troubled retirement funds every year. For the coming fiscal year, Christie has proposed a $34.8 billion budget with a $1.86 billion pension payment, around 40 percent of what state actuaries say is necessary.
SALVADORE RIZZO, STATE HOUSE BUREAU | THE RECORD| FEBRUARY 29
NY TIMES-- Testing for Joy and Grit? Schools Nationwide Push to Measure Students’ Emotional Skills
SAN FRANCISCO — The fifth graders in Jade Cooney’s classroom compete against a kitchen timer during lessons to see how long they can sustain good behavior — raising hands, disagreeing respectfully and looking one another in the eye — without losing time to insults or side conversations.
As reward for minutes without misconduct, they win prizes like 20 seconds to kick their feet up on their desks or to play rock-paper-scissors. And starting this year,their school and schools in eight other California districts will test students on how well they have learned the kind of skills like self-control and conscientiousness that the games aim to cultivate — ones that might be described as everything you should have learned in kindergarten but are still reading self-help books to master in middle age.
By KATE ZERNIKE| FEB. 29, 2016
Garden State Coalition of Schools