Murphy talks confirmed COVID-19 cases, rapid tests at schools

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy fielded a bunch of school-related questions Sept. 30 during his COVID-19 briefing.

Asked if school districts are required to report COVID-19 cases and/or outbreaks to their families in their school community, Murphy said, “Absolutely.”

As for the distribution of the rapid coronavirus tests coming from the federal government, he said it’s “too early to tell” whether all N.J.…

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Murphy signs revised fiscal year 2021 budget

Gov. Phil Murphy on Sept. 29 signed New Jersey’s revised fiscal year 2021 budget, with Senate President Stephen M. Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Craig J. Coughlin among the speakers at the afternoon event.

“As we have all said many times before, a budget is a reflection of the values of our state,” Murphy said prior to signing the budget.…

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NYT goes inside the White House-CDC battle over reopening schools

Interviews and documents with past and present government officials reveal that the White House “spent weeks trying to press public health professionals to fall in line with President Trump’s election-year agenda of pushing to reopen schools and the economy as quickly as possible,” The New York Times reports.

For the full story, click here.

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Rutgers faculty members protest layoffs, other issues

A planned protest by Rutgers University faculty members about recent layoffs morphed into a rally Sept. 26 in New Brunswick about additional issues as well, among them saving the Lincoln Annex School, reports The Daily Targum’s Hayley Slusser.

Among the 1,000-plus who have been let go since the start of the pandemic are part-time lecturers and dining hall workers.…

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Plagiarism found in mass email by Stockton University’s interim provost

A mass email sent Sept. 4 by Stockton University Interim Provost Michelle Craig McDonald was later found to be 30% plagiarized, writes NJ Advance Media’s Kelly Heyboer.

A Stockton University faculty member made the discovery by running the email through the software Turnitin; several paragraphs had lines that mirrored those from a widely published op-ed piece by Trinity College President Joanne Berger-Sweeney, Heyboer reports.…

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Report: N.J. teachers paid 3.1% less than comparable workers

New Jersey teachers earn 3.1% less than other comparable college-educated workers, according to a report by Sylvia A. Allegretto (Center on Wage and Employment Dynamics co-chair) and Lawrence Mishel (former Economic Policy Institute president).

In no state, on average, does the relative wage of teachers surpass that of other college graduates,” they write.

Other key findings include the following:

  • The teacher wage penalty has grown substantially since the mid-1990s. 
  • The wage penalty for men in teaching is much larger than it is for women in the profession, and it too has worsened considerably. 
  • The teacher wage penalty exceeds 20% in 21 states and in the District of Columbia.
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N.J. Senate passes unemployment bill for adjuncts

By a vote of 38-0, the state Senate on Sept. 24 approved S2852, a bill that would enable adjunct professors to collect unemployment benefits.

“Many adjunct professors face uncertainty with the unknown length of school shutdowns and looming budget cuts,” said Senate President Stephen M. Sweeney, a co-sponsor of the bill, in a story by Insider NJ.…

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New Rutgers institute to study racial justice

Rutgers University on Sept. 24 said it has received a $15 million grant from New York’s Andrew W. Mellon Foundation that will be used to establish the Institute for the Study of Global Racial Justice.

Prabhas Moghe, who is the university’s executive vice president for academic affairs, will oversee the institute. Centers will be based on the New Brunswick, Newark and Camden campuses.…

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Data: Community college enrollment down by 7.5%

Fall 2020 enrollment at community colleges is down by 7.5%, according to preliminary data from the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center.

In its First Look Fall 2020 Enrollment findings, with 22% of colleges reporting as of Sept. 10, the nonprofit research organization says undergraduate numbers “fell nationwide and across all types of institutions.”

“I think many people thought by now, six months into the recession, we should start seeing enrollment growth by unemployed students looking to upskill,” said Doug Shapiro, the center’s executive director, in an Inside Higher Ed story.…

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Weingarten guests on Ms. magazine’s podcast

The latest episode of “On the Issues With Michele Goodwin,” a Ms. magazine podcast, featured AFT President Randi Weingarten, who touched upon many issues related to education and the pandemic. Here is some of what she said:

“I mean, it’s really hard to do schoolwork on a smartphone. Really hard to do schoolwork on a smartphone.…

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Rutgers prof pushes for diversity among college football, basketball head coaching finalists

Rutgers University adjunct professor Jason Belzer is a co-founder of Collegiate Coaching Diversity Pledge, an opt-in agreement among Division I athletic directors to have a diverse pool of finalists for head coaching vacancies in basketball (men’s and women’s teams) and football.

“We’re asking people to include at least one diverse candidate, one non-diverse candidate in the process,” Belzer said in a story by NJ Advance Media’s Keith Sargeant.…

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