12-21-17 Education in the News

NJ Spotlight--The List: The 10 Most Overcrowded Public-School Districts in NJ

Twenty years and $8 billion later, 71 percent of New Jersey’s neediest school districts are severely overcrowded. But, where’s the money going to come from to fix them?

After 20 years and more than $8 billion spent, the latest reckoning indicates that some New Jersey public school systems are still suffering from overcrowding. And worse yet, it looks like the money has run out.

A report shows that 71 percent of the state’s neediest school districts are severely overcrowded, with no abatement in sight.

The Department of Education’s 2016 Educational Facilities Needs Assessment collected data from all 31 of the Abbott districts — aka School Development Authority districts — and found that two-thirds do not have adequate space to meet student needs. This data came from Long Range Facilities Plans, submitted by each of the districts, which measure usable classroom space and enrollment data. The EFNA is crucial because its findings are used to prioritize school construction and to allocate SDA funds.


Carly Sitrin | December 21, 2017


Education Week--Majority of Teachers Say Reforms Have Been 'Too Much'

Change is hard—particularly for teachers, who are generally taking dozens of students along for the ride.

Yet the majority of teachers say they’ve faced major changes—related to what and how they teach, as well as how they’re evaluated—over the last couple of years in their schools and districts, according to a recent survey by the Education Week Research Center.

And while there’s agreement that the upheaval has been a bit much, teachers have tended to stay positive about the reforms they’re experiencing.

The change “feels thick and fast,” said Alisa Myles, a reading specialist at Eleanor Roosevelt Elementary School in Morrisville, Pa., who answered the survey. “But I’ll tell you, teachers are so resilient. Teachers are incredible. They keep up with it because they have to.”


Liana Loewus| December 19, 2017