Learning is more than a test score

I believe the growing fixation on high-stakes testing is damaging our public education system. It’s time to make sure that teaching and learning—not testing—drive classroom instruction so that we can give all children the rich, meaningful public education they deserve.

Appropriate assessments are an integral part of a high-quality education system. But an accountability system obsessed with measuring, which punishes teachers and schools, comes at a huge cost.…

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Study: Charter schools outperform public schools in N.J.

By Jessica Calefati/The Star-Ledger

Students who attend New Jersey’s rapidly growing menu of charter schools earned higher math scores than their district school counterparts 40 percent of the time between 2007 and 2011, according to a report released today by Stanford University.

Published by the university’s Center for Research on Education Outcomes, the study examined five years of test score data for students in grades 3-8 who live in towns with charter schools.…

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Michelle Rhee’s right turn

The school-reform advocate touts her “bipartisan” bona fides, but more and more of her allies are conservatives

By Daniel Denvir

Nov. 6 was a good day for Michelle Rhee. The former Washington, D.C., schools chancellor, through her organization StudentsFirst, poured money into state-level campaigns nationwide, winning 86 of 105 races and flipping a net 33 seats to advocates of so-called school reform, a movement that advocates expanding privately run public charter schools, weakening teachers’ unions, increasing the weight of high-stakes standardized tests and, in some cases, using taxpayer dollars to fund private tuition through vouchers as the keys to improving public education.…

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Teacher Seniority Still a Four-Letter Word to Administration — ‘LIFO’

Last-in, first-out seniority continues to irk Christie and Cerf, administration issues survey on subject

By John Mooney

For all its celebration of New Jersey’s new teacher tenure law, the Christie administration hasn’t hidden its lament for the one provision it couldn’t change: seniority protection for tenured teachers in the case of layoffs.

But it hasn’t given up on building its case.…

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N.J. colleges to launch big construction projects funded by $750M bond issue

By Joe Moszczynski/The Star-Ledger

Construction could start late next year on a wide array of projects at the state’s 19 county colleges that are expected be funded by a $750 million bond issue approved by voters earlier this month.

“The projects run the gamut, from new classrooms to classroom renovations,” said Jacob Farbman, spokesman for the New Jersey Council of County Colleges.…

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AFTNJ members join Wal-Mart Black Friday protests

Organization United for Respect, a group of Wal-Mart workers organizing for better working conditions and union recognition, called for nationwide protests the day after Thanksgiving. AFTNJ members supported the effort.

“The theme of the day was solidarity, solidarity and more solidarity,” said Dianne Daniele, member of Kean University Adjunct Faculty Federation and Occupy Bergen County. “There were labor leaders, roller skaters, grandmothers, white hair, green hair and a lot in between,” said the English Professor.…

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AFTNJ Superstorm Sandy Fund

A fund has been established in partnership with the AFT Disaster Relief Fund to assist AFTNJ members and retirees suffering losses from the storm and its aftermath. The fund is part of the union’s tradition of solidarity with members overtaken by natural or man-made catastrophes.

The fund will provide some relief — $250 per member household—to help members meet their immediate essential needs for this disaster.…

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Braun: Rutgers dodged bullet in UMDNJ merger; political undertones still loom

Bob Braun/Star-Ledger Columnist

Rutgers University’s two governing boards Monday conditionally endorsed the new law requiring it to take over most of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ). The votes were unanimous, preceded by congratulatory speeches and paeans of gratitude to everyone anyone there could think of and followed by a long rounds applause.…

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Medical school, move to Big Ten expected to transform Rutgers

By Patricia Alex, Staff Writer. The Record.

Rutgers on Monday acquired a respected medical school and an entrée into what is arguably the country’s premiere athletic conference — developments that position the state university to leap to a new level of recognition and quality.
Rutgers President Robert Barachi speaking during a press conference following the merger vote.…

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Peaceful Transition Marks Rutgers-UMDNJ Restructuring

Rutgers assumes control of most of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, but financial issues and other questions remain to be resolved

By Colleen O’Dea

Rutgers University’s governing boards on Monday agreed to take control of most of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, with no dissent and none of the vitriol that marked the debate over the restructuring of higher education in the first half of the year.…

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Rutgers students offer mixed reactions on merger, football talk

By Tatiana Schlossberg, Staff Writer. The Record.

Even though Monday was a historic day for Rutgers University — merging with the state’s medical schools and maneuvering towards joining the Big Ten Athletic Conference — reactions on the university’s New Brunswick campus were mixed, with many students unaware that any change was afoot.

The University’s board of governors voted overwhelmingly to approve the merger as part of a reorganization of the state’s public education that began almost a decade ago.…

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Community Thanksgiving Dinner will be served at the following locations in Middlesex County

The Colonia American Legion Post 248 806 S. Middlesex Ave Colonia Nov. 22 12pm-3pm
Elijah’s Promise 18 Neilson St. New Brunswick Nov. 22 12pm-2pm
Renovation House Community Center, 1 Olive Street Perth Amboy Nov. 22 11am–1pm
For seniors
Renovation House Community Center, 1 Olive Street Perth Amboy Nov. 22 1pm-5pm for anyone
Salvation Army 433 State Street Perth Amboy Nov.…

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Rutgers University Merger Approved

By Heather Haddon

Rutgers University’s governing boards officially approved the school’s merger with the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, the final formal step in the largest reorganization of New Jersey public colleges in decades.

Officials said the merger of Rutgers and the state’s medical school will help bring more federal research funds to New Jersey and improve biomedical studies.…

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