A Selection of GSCS in the News

Garden State Coalition of Schools/GSCS                                                                                                    5/16/12

A Selection:  GSCS speaks for you in the media and in Trenton

 GSCS FYI on www.gscschools.org
GSCS Gets Your Message Out - In addition to members and interested citizens, GSCS sends information from its website  www.gscschools.org  and its GSCS Email-Net newsletter updates  to the Statehouse - legislative and executive branch officials and staff -  as well as to the media, on a regular basis...

7-12-12, NJ Spotlight:  "Debate Swells as Decision Nears on Virtual Charters"     ". . . the Garden State Coalition of Schools, held its executive board meeting and discussed the letter at length before deciding to send its own.  The group is the state's largest organization representing specifically suburban districts.

 

"Lynne Strickland, the coalition's director, said it also was a matter of different approach to the same ends.

 

" 'In practice, GSCS is not litigious but rather focuses on policy issues that can impact quality education for all children,' she said. 'Given that our membership comes from the ranks of parents, school board members, and school administrators, GSCS reflects community concerns and speaks with an informed community voice on education issues.' . . . "

 

6-18-12, Politickernj:  "Ruiz' tenure reform bill clears Budget panel "            " . . . Lynne Strickland of the Garden State Coalition of Schools also backed the bill and said change after 100 years under one system is not easy."

 

6-15-12, Star Ledger:  "Audience to N.J. Board of Ed:  Proposed charter school regulations a mistake" 

" . . . 'Consider the old phrase "hurry up and wait."  Let's get this thing right,' said Lynne Strickland, executive director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools . . . "

 

6-6-12, The Record:  "Opponents argue against virtual charter schools at N.J. Board of Education meeting"

" . . . Lynne Strickland, of Garden State Coalition of Schools, said that in the state's explanation of the proposed changes, 'no mention is made of costs [to districts] and how students will be supported.' . . . " 

 

5-4-12, The Record:  "Christie applauds court ruling limiting sick-day payouts for school chiefs . . . "

“ . . . It's a possibility (speaking of the court ruling being a possible precedent) and it will be a concern to many folks who are dealing with (administrative) turnover,’ said Lynn Strickland, head of the Garden State Coalition of Schools . . .  'The issue of law or regulations superceding contracts is a big issue with pluses and minuses.’ "

 

4-14-12, Press of Atlantic City:  “Plan would cut state school aid $300 million; not all districts affected the same”

“ . . . ‘We have to deal with the reality of the political world and the economy,’  said Lynne Strickland, executive director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, which represents largely suburban districts throughout the state . . . ‘We are not naive,’ she said. ‘But we have to work in the moment and prepare for the future.’ “

 

3-27-12, NJ Spotlight:  What Do Budget Reviews Mean for Education Department?”    

“ . . . ‘The department (DOE) needs to have a greater breadth in order for it to be truly supportive for districts,’ said Lynne Strickland, director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools . . .’If they are beefing up, that’s only better for all .’ . . .”

 

3-20-12, Politickernj:  "Education advocates seek greater increase in funding; say schools still underfunded"

" . . . Lynne Strickland, the executive director of Garden State Coalition of Schools, said she was in favor of the additional school aid, but still had concerns about underfunding. Strickland also said she had concerns about charter schools, which 'create a hole in school budgets.' . . ."

 

3-13-12, State Street Wire-Politickernj.com:  "Education advocates seek increased funding"

" . . . Lynne Strickland, the executive director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, which advocates for public support of public education, said that public schools need more stable funding.  'It's not an easy budget but we do feel it's going in the right direction,' Strickland said.  . . . " 

 

2-26-12, Star Ledger:  "Scores of N.J. school districts moving elections from April to November"     

" . . . said Lynne Strickland, executive director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools.  'Most school boards are responsible and want to do the best for their kids, . . . I think they are very hopeful that, without having separate April elections, they can get a budget done appropriately but stay focused on the education of their students throughout the school year.  I'd say overwhelmingly this will be a good thing.' . . . "

 

2-24-12, Asbury Park Press -Gannett:  "State aid cuts hit low-income areas, help suburbs"    

 " . . . But Lynne Strickland, who represents some 200 suburban school districts through the Garden State Coalition of Schools, praised the new figures.  'There's recognition that this has been a long time coming, and we're glad for it,' Strickland said.  'Suburbs have been left to free fall . . .  We need the help, too.' . . . "

 

2-24-12, The Record:  "Bergen County schools due state aid under plan"  " . . .'It really does look like the governor has recognized the suburbs have been left out of the loop for quite a while in state aid, and they need it,' said Lynne Strickland, executive director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools.  'It's been a long time coming but we're glad it's showing up now.' "

 

2-24-12, NJ Spotlight:  "Winners and Losers for School Aid"       “ . . . 'Seeing not only the plus column next to our members, but also the echo of an improved aid picture for the suburbs in the future feels good,' read an email from Lynne Strickland, executive director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, a group of more than 100 suburban districts. 'It has been a long time.' . . . "

 

2-22-12, The Record:  "How much Christie's aid plan would help individual schools an unknown"     

". . . Lynne Strickland, executive director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, which represents mostly suburbs, was cautious about the coming aid figures.  'An increase is always a plus . . . but until we know how it really is going to be distributed it's hard to get a feel for whether it will be well received throughout the state,' she said.  'We'll have to see what the devil is, if there is a devil in the details.' "

 

2-14-12, NJ Spotlight:  "Will Christie Cut School Aid?”      “ . . . ‘If my members were held to flat funding, it would be hard to be content with that,' said Lynne Strickland, executive director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, which represents mostly suburban districts.  David Abbott, superintendent of Marlboro schools and president of the Garden State Coalition, said districts are growing resigned to the austere times in the aftermath of Christie's cuts in his first budget . . . "

 

2-6-12, Courier Post:  "Teacher tenure reform headed for runway"      " . . . Lynne Strickland of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, which represents suburban school districts, said she could see numerous points of compromise in the legislation.  She said the bill appeared to be on the fast track . . . "

 

1-3-12, Asbury Park Press / Gannett:  "Reforms may end teacher tenure in NJ"    

. . . Lynne Strickland (GSCS Executive Director) said teachers and parents are still waiting to see what all the [reform agenda] changes will eventually mean.  'The effort is [primarily] pitched toward school districts that are having performance issues,' Strickland said.  'Those schools that are performing well, parents and educators want them to continue to do well, and they're worried they're going to be held back by a one-size fits all approach.' . . . "

 

12-16-11, Asbury Park Press:  "School elections bill advances in Assembly"     “ . . . Lynne Strickland, executive director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, which represents suburban school districts, questioned a provision in the bill that would let municipal governments unilaterally decide to move school elections . . . "

 

11-22-11, NJ Spotlight:  "Suburban Schools vs. Charter:  First Round Goes to the Suburbs"      . . . 'Certainly if districts feel they may be harmed, they may find themselves in a better position to challenge,' said Lynne Strickland, director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, whose members include most of the districts involved in the challenges . . . "

 

11-3-11, Asbury Park Press: "Education reform on agenda . . . Teacher tenure, school vouchers likely to be acted on this fall"      " . . . The lobbyists and association leaders, along with a state official, did not offer specific details during a meeting of the Garden State Coalition of Schools at Rutgers University, but instead presented a broad outline of measures being debated behind closed doors . . . "

 

10-24-11, NJ Spotlight:  For David Hespe, Return to Trenton Brings New and Old Challenges"

“. . . 'Dave is balanced, deliberative, and straightforwardly honest,' said Lynne Strickland, head of the Garden State Coalition of Schools who has worked with Hespe off and on for more than a decade.  'He's an all-around good guy who has the tools to be very effective, while being well-liked by those who work for him,' she said.  'And that's important at the DOE these days.' . . . “

 

10-13-11, NJ Spotlight:  “Charters Continue to Stir Up Controversy—in Senate, Court, and Home Districts”

“ . . . tensions between charters and their host districts seem intractable, at least for now.  'It's certainly not going away as an issue,' said Lynne Strickland, director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools.  'But rather than pitting a community against itself, something needs to be talked through to get this off the dime.' “

 

7-14-11, Associated Press-Press of Atlantic City, Courier Post:  "New Jersey school aid plan triggers more disputes in Legislature . . . "  ". . . Because of the way the funds were split up, many districts are getting much more than last year but still less than the year before.  'One's talking about oranges, and the other may be talking about apples,' said Lynne Strickland, who runs the suburban school group Garden State Coalition of Schools.  'It's like five steps back, two steps forward.' . . .”

 

7-13-11, Star Ledger:  “N.J. public school districts to receive at least 2 percent funding increase"    " . . . Lynne Strickland, executive director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, said she was relieved to see 'the second step of the school funding giveback' confirmed by Tuesday's release of district-level aid figures.  'Last year, districts were all hit the same way.  Now, they're getting back some of what they lost in a similar way,' said Strickland, whose organization advocates for mostly suburban districts.  'The needs are there, and they're ready to put it all to good use as soon as possible.'

 

7-13-11, Njspotlight.com:  "For Administration, School Aid Equals Property Tax Relief . . . Governor's office 'strongly encourages' school districts not to use funding to restore cut programs . . . "  

"  . . .’ The Garden State Coalition hopes that the administration's guidance suggesting that funding be used for property tax relief will also mean that schools will not be discouraged from reducing large class sizes, or other important educational needs that have be put aside due to recent aid cutbacks,' Strickland said last night . . . "

 

7-13-11, Philadelphia Inquirer:  "Christie's increase in school aid is detailed"     " . . . Lynne Strickland, head of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, which includes many suburban districts, said she was relieved to hear about the additional funds. 'It's well recognized the districts have really had to cut back on programs for education,'  she said. . . ." 

 

7-13-11, Press of Atlantic City:  "New Jersey schools to divide extra $600M in school aid"     " . . . . Lynne Strickland of the Garden State Coalition of Schools was more cautious.  She said she would hope districts get the option to either use money this year or save it for next year when it could help control property taxes . . . 'Some districts could really use some extra money this year,' she said.  'But the timelines are tough, and past experience has shown that when the state gives extra aid, they like to see it used for property tax relief.' . . ."

 

7-6-11, Njspotlight.com:  "Christie's School Aid Cuts -- And Adds -- Leave Districts Uncertain About Funding:  School districts anxious to know how much they'll actually get and how they can spend it"

" . . . Lynne Strickland of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, said Christie's plan 'at least hit every district in a positive way.' 

. . . But as for restrictions, 'that is worrisome,' she said.  'We need to keep an eye on that.' . . . "

 

6-24-11, Njspotlight.com:  "The Millionaire's Tax Makes a Comeback -- as a School-Funding Vehicle . . . Surcharge on the wealthy would deliver additional aid to New Jersey's wealthiest school districts"    “ . . .'It's good news that it will reach all districts,' said Lynne Strickland, director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, a suburban school organization.  'All districts are in distress, and we are thankful.'

 She and others were warier about the fate of the remainder of the funds that were linked to the millionaire's tax.

 'When you go that way, it's a political or partisan tug of war,' she said. 'We'd hope the children would be above the partisan politics.' "

 

6-9-11, Njspotlight.com:  "Waiting a Little Longer for Long-Awaited Tenure Reform Bill"   ". . . 'We're wondering if the district leaders are being left out of the loop,' said Lynne Strickland, director of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, a suburban schools organization.  'All of this is a major change, and as with any major change, these things need to be looked at and discussed thoroughly.' . . . “