Murphy calls for rules on school shooting drills as part of gun safety bill package

With Metuchen High School students in attendance, Gov. Phil Murphy spoke Dec. 2 outside the borough’s municipal building to push a series of gun safety bills, one of which pertains to regulating school shooting drills.

“We gather today … while nearly halfway across the country, families in Michigan are grappling with the grief and horror that their children are no longer with them,” Murphy said, referring to the Nov.

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NTU members speak out at monthly BOE meeting

The Newark Board of Education heard from many voices Nov. 23 during its monthly meeting, among them two Newark Teachers Union members who cited circumstances affecting colleagues and students in New Jersey’s largest school district.

Christopher Canik, a math instructor at Newark Vocational High School, said teachers “are treated like we are not professionals.” Yvette Jordan, who teaches social studies at Central High School, was troubled by the lack of lead testing in Newark schools’ drinking water.…

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Submit nominations now for ACE diversity leadership award

The American Council on Education is accepting nominations through Dec. 1 for the Reginald Wilson Diversity Leadership Award.

This award is presented at ACE’s annual meeting; the next one will be March 5-7 in San Diego.

According to ACE, the Wilson award “honors individuals who have demonstrated leadership and commitment on a national level to the advancement of racial and ethnic minorities and other underrepresented populations in higher education.”…

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Register by Dec. 12 for AFT’s CSI 2022

The 2022 edition of the AFT’s Center for School Improvement Leadership Institute is set for Jan. 20-22 at the United Federation of Teachers headquarters, 52 Broadway in Manhattan.

Under the banner “Supporting Literacy, Equity and Community,” CSI 2022 will focus on:

  1. Reviewing the science of reading and helping teams identify what they need to do to enrich their literacy practices.
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Healthy food, healthy minds are on the School Meals for All menu

With its new School Meals for All campaign, the AFT “aims to expand the federal school meals programs so that all children attending the nation’s public schools will have access to a free, tasty and nutritious breakfast and lunch every school day,” writes Annette Licitra.

To read more about the campaign, which launched Nov. 18, click here.…

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N.J. school districts to receive $75M for emergent and capital maintenance needs

Three days after allocating $400 million in capital facilities grant funding for higher education in New Jersey, Gov. Phil Murphy on Nov. 19 said that $75 million will be set aside for school districts statewide to help meet emergent and capital maintenance needs.

“Since I signed the state budget in June, the Department of Education and the [New Jersey Schools Development Authority] have been working together on creating an equitable formula for distributing these funds,” Murphy said from Christopher Columbus School #8 in Garfield.…

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Solidarity aplenty at Local 1796’s layoff protest rally

Labor leaders and union members from across New Jersey joined students from William Paterson University on Nov. 19 for AFT Local 1796’s layoff protest rally on the Wayne campus in front of the Marion E. Shea Center for Performing Arts.

Here are excerpts from select rally speakers:

“Faculty and staff are not being laid off due to their ineffectiveness or inefficiency but because of inadequate state funding for William Paterson as a minority-serving institution, on top of eight years of poor financial and academic decisions by the previous president and board of trustees, who were unable to increase enrollment and retention and generate alternative revenue sources.”…

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Teacher pivots in effort to bring students up to speed in ‘the reading year’

Around America, “the first months of school this fall have laid bare what many in education feared: Students are way behind in skills they should have mastered already,” writes Jackie Mader for The Hechinger Report.

“Children in early elementary school have had their most formative first few years of education disrupted by the pandemic, years when they learn basic math and reading skills and important social-emotional skills, like how to get along with peers and follow routines in a classroom,” she adds.…

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Murphy earmarks $400M for revolving bonds supporting higher education

Gov. Phil Murphy on Nov. 16 said that New Jersey will release $400 million in capital facilities grant funding in a joint solicitation of four revolving bond programs to support the state’s institutions of higher education and its students.

“Whether it is a top-notch science lab or a state-of-the-art technology center, we need to ensure our campuses include these critical resources to compete and win these young hearts and minds to seek their educational futures here,” Murphy said.…

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Survey: Faculty mental health concerns higher education presidents

More than half of college and university presidents who participated in a recent American Council on Education survey chose “mental health: faculty and staff” as a pressing concern, with roughly one quarter of those presidents selecting “recruiting new faculty and/or staff” as a pressing issue.

The survey, conducted Sept. 27 through Oct. 8, involved 230 higher education presidents at two-year and four-year institutions (public and private).…

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Local 1060 uses AFT grant to refresh classroom libraries at Robert Fulton

As one might expect, The Book Room at Robert Fulton Elementary School in North Bergen is deserving of its name.

On the morning of Nov. 9, though, it was the home to many more printed works than usual.

On the long, brown tables in the middle of the room were several fresh-from-the-box stacks of books, purchased by Local 1060 from First Book through an AFT Back to School grant.…

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