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Email: gscschools@gmail.com
Phone: 609-394-2828 (office)
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Garden State Coalition of Schools
Elisabeth Ginsburg, Executive Director
160 West State Street
Trenton, New Jersey 08608

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The Buzz

11-16-18 Education in the News
NJ Spotlight--Teachers Sue State, NJEA for Allegedly Violating Supreme Court Ruling on Union Dues Two Ocean Township teachers file federal class action suit, want to be able to opt out more easily Two Ocean Township teachers are filing a federal class action suit against the state of New Jersey, the NJEA and their local union. They claim the labor groups are violating a recent U.S. Supreme Court Janus ruling that prevents unions from collecting dues if a public employee opts out...'

Star Ledger--N.J. kids stranded in schools, on buses late into the night in snowstorm chaos It was the school day that would not end for children around New Jersey Thursday as many students were stranded at school or stuck in buses well after dark as a snowstorm crippled the state's roads and rails...'

Education Week--Study: Having Just One Black Teacher Can Up Black Students' Chances of Going to College

If a black student has just one or two black teachers in elementary school, that student is significantly more likely to enroll in college, a new Johns Hopkins University study has found...'

11-15-18 Education in the News
NJ Spotlight--Who Can Solve New Jersey’s Affordable-Housing Conundrum? Gov. Murphy hasn’t made affordable housing a priority, but he’s giving the closing keynote at the League of Municipalities annual conference, and local leaders — among others — are looking for guidance...'

NJ Spotlight--State Directs Money from Tobacco Tax to Fight Teen Vaping ‘Epidemic’ NJ tries to curb rising use of flavored e-cigarettes among youngsters as FDA cracks down on manufacturers at national level...'

Chalkbeat--A quietly edited report and dueling blog posts reveal a divide over the ‘portfolio model’ A report on school choice released last month offered this in a list of strategies for improving schools: “creating a portfolio approach that treats all types of schools equally.” Today, that reference is gone from the report — a small edit that reveals notable disagreements among prominent names in education who often agree...'

Chalkbeat--Like most superintendents, I cared a lot about test scores. Too much, it turns out. One of Paymon Rouhanifard’s earliest initiatives after becoming superintendent of Camden, New Jersey, schools in 2013 was to design a “school information card” that spelled out each school’s test scores in a family-friendly format. By the time he left the district this year, the cards were no longer being produced...'

Education Week--Schools Are Spending Millions on Safety. How Will They Know It's Working? Schools are spending tens of millions of dollars this year to shore up security in the wake of two mass school shootings. But how do K-12 leaders know if they are spending their scarce funds in the right way? Are the measures they invest in going to make their schools safer? How will they know if what they've done is working?...'

11-14-18 Education in the News
Asbury Park Press--NJ School Funding Cuts: Shore Districts Lose Appeals A group of Jersey Shore school districts is trying to stop a financial bleed by appealing state aid decisions. Their requests were denied..."

Chalkbeat--In a shift, more education reformers say they’re worried about schools’ focus on testing It was not the place you’d expect to hear sharp critiques of standardized testing...'

Education Week--Principals Crack Down on Harmful Student Behaviors Leaders confront students' hazing, drinking, and sexual violence When Brad Seamer became principal of the joint middle and high school in a small South Dakota town in 2008, his predecessor warned him about the hazing. It was best to just look the other way, Seamer remembers being told...'

11-13-18 Education in the News
NJ Spotlight--Op-Ed: It’s Time to Add Value To New Jersey Teacher Evaluations The current system of evaluating teachers in the Garden State all but ignores an extremely important, if controversial, tool I was a New Jersey school principal and district superintendent for more than 25 years. I estimate that I did more than 2,000 formal teacher observations. The process by which New Jersey teachers are evaluated has changed dramatically in the last several years. However, this process is seriously flawed and occasionally has been politically motivated...'
11-12-18 Education in the News
Star Ledger—Op-Ed: 20 reasons why 20 minutes of recess is vital for N.J. school kids A new law requiring 20 minutes of daily playtime for Garden State elementary school students will no longer go into effect this school year. Instead, a one-year delay will give schools more time to prepare academic schedules...'

Asbury Park Press—Editorial: Spend Referendum Bond Money Wisely The big question following approval of New Jersey’s school bond referendum is how the money will be divvied up...'

NPR--'We're Bringing Education Back': Takeaways From The Election...'

11-9-18 Education in the News
NJ Spotlight--School Elections: There Was More on Tuesday’s Ballot than the Midterms In 500-plus districts across the state, voters weighed in on who would take seats on school boards. In districts with referenda, spending on security was the dominant issue...'

Education Week--What Does Personalized Learning Mean? Whatever People Want It To For some, such variety is reason for optimism. But others warn that loose definitions could lead to incoherence and ineffectiveness Personalized learning has a big problem. Inside America's schools, the term is used to mean just about anything...'

The Atlantic--The Backlash Against Screen Time at School Combining education and technology is great—until it's not. Four years ago, Paul France left a teaching job in the Chicago suburbs to move to San Francisco and be part of the so-called personalized-learning revolution in education. He joined a high-profile start-up called AltSchool whose investors include Mark Zuckerberg and the venture-capital firm Andreessen Horowitz. France was passionate about both education and technology and welcomed the opportunity to combine the two. But they would not prove to be as complementary as he thought...'

11-8-18 Education in the News
Star Ledger--Here's what we voted to spend our money on, Jersey. (And what we said 'hell no!' to) We have the highest property taxes in the nation and even though we love to complain about it, sometimes the right issues — schools, safety, open space — still get our wallets' support...'

Asbury Park Press—Will You Pay More for School Projects? Did your school district ask to raise taxes for new facilities projects, security upgrades or police officers? Here are the results...'

Chalkbeat--Election results: Newark voters stick with an elected school board, NJ voters approve $500 million for schools Newark voters decided Tuesday that the power to choose school board members should remain in their hands, not the mayor’s...'

11-7-18 Education in the News
New Jersey Spotlight--New Jersey Voters Give Thumbs-Up to $500 Million Ballot Question Funds will go to expanding career-training facilities at high schools and county colleges, tightening school security, and getting lead out of drinking water at Garden State schools...'

Star Ledger--Election 2018: N.J. voters OK $500 million for school security, water improvements New Jersey voters on Tuesday approved a proposal to borrow $500 million to expand vocational schools and bolster security across K-12 school districts, according to projections from the Associated Press...'

Press of Atlantic City--Sandy Hook Promise to train NJ students on gun violence prevention Thousands of students in 10 school districts in New Jersey will receive training in preventing gun violence from the Sandy Hook Promise organization thanks to a federal grant, the Department of Education announced this week...'

Education Week--Beware the Unintended Consequences of the School Safety Movement Expanded policing and zero tolerance could create a civil rights and public health crisis...'

11-6-18 Education in the News
NJ Spotlight--Online Tool Makes It Easier for Municipalities to Share Services The push to pool resources is key to driving down property taxes. Website gives local leaders a chance to explore their options — before consolidation is mandated...'

Associated Press (via Press of Atlantic City)--NJ voters face ballot question on $500M bond for schools TRENTON — New Jersey voters, in addition to deciding competitive Senate and House races, will also decide the fate of $500 million in bonds that would be used for a host of school-related initiatives...'

Washington Post--From South Carolina to California, charter school-loving billionaires are plowing money into midterm local and education races In Charleston, S.C., advocates for the public school district are worried. They have watched some of the state’s wealthiest people — including billionaire financier Ben Navarro — form a coalition this year to back school board candidates who support a broad expansion of charter schools...'

Chalkbeat--Care about education? On Election Day, watch these races with us Education won’t be top of mind for all voters on Tuesday. But in some parts of the country, schools are at the heart of intense political battles...'

Education Week--Could Tax Increases Fix School Funding Problems? Some Gubernatorial Candidates Think So While the economy has been going strong in recent years, school funding has not caught up. And with 36 governors up for re-election next month, along with two-thirds of legislative seats across the states, the topic has been a hot one on the campaign trail this season. The issue is especially prevalent in five states that have struggled amid budget cuts that have led to teacher layoffs, inadequate school facilities, and reduced school schedules...'

11-5-18 Education in the News
The Record- Test Gains for Black, Hispanic and Other Students Achievement gaps are narrowing on statewide math and language tests in New Jersey, as black, Hispanic and other students make the biggest gains...'

Asbury Park Press—Shore Schools As Voters for More Money for Security, Facilities Eight school districts in Monmouth and Ocean Counties will ask voters to fund new initiatives this year. What is your child’s school requesting?...'

Education Week--Even for Districts Leading Interoperability Push, Journey Is Just Beginning For Highline Public Schools, the journey towards greater interoperability started in earnest about five years ago, the result of a dramatic influx of new classroom technologies and rising questions about how to safely and effectively make use of all the digital information they generated...'

The Atlantic--As Humanities Majors Decline, Colleges Try to Hype Up Their Programs The Great Recession scared a lot of students away from the humanities. Now administrators are trying to bring them back...'

11-2-18 Education in the News
NJ Spotlight--Op-Ed: Ballot Question Shuts Out Most Students from Facilities Funding Trenton needs to bring all school buildings up to par, not just vo-tech districts that are the primary beneficiaries of proposed $500M bonds...'

NY Times--How ‘Makers’ Make the Classroom More Inclusive The maker movement started out flashy, bringing 3-D printers into classrooms around the world. Now, it’s about meeting student and community needs...'

Asbury Park Press—Op-Ed: Back NJ Bond Vote—Gopal and Oroho Last year in New Jersey alone, 17,000 applicants were turned away from county vo-tech programs because there wasn’t any room for them in the schools...'

11-1-2018 Education in the News
NJ Spotlight--S&P Notes Progress but Ranks NJ’s Among Worst-Funded Pension Systems Report by credit-rating agency underlines immense long-term challenges to bringing New Jersey’s state pensions onto sound footing...'

The Record—College Application Essays That Stood Out With high school seniors in the middle of college application season, we asked local colleges to share college application essays that hit the mark...'

Philadelphia Inquirer--It’s not just Trump: Education a big issue in 2018. ‘No candidate wants to be seen as stingy’ Hot-button issues like immigration and guns might be commanding more attention, but in Pennsylvania and around the country, education has become an important issue...'

Chalkbeat--Anti-Semitism is on the rise in schools. After Pittsburgh, teachers grapple with a response. At New York City’s Harvest Collegiate High School on Monday, social studies teacher Andy del Calvo did what educators often do: He adapted his lesson for the times. He shared news stories about the massacre of 11 people at a Pittsburgh synagogue and about last week’s shooting of two African-Americans at a Kentucky supermarket, and urged his students to think...'

10-31-18 Education in the News
The Atlantic--Why Millions of Teens Can't Finish Their Homework The push toward technology-focused education overlooks the students who lack the resources needed to complete their assignments...'

Education Week--There's a Downside to Attending an Academically Selective School, Study Says When sending their children to school, parents will often aim for schools with high scores and challenging programs, but according to a new analysis of data from Project TALENT, selective schools with a higher average achievement level may actually exert a negative influence on students' long-term success...'

2018 - 2019 Announcement Archives
Older Archives

The Special Education Task Force Report was released  in November 2015. GSCS, a Task Force member,  looks forward to discussion on this important topic under the Murphy administration.  See below for a link to the report.

RELATED LINKS
Final Report of NJ Task Force on Improving Special Education for Public School Students

 

Garden State Coalition of Schools
160 W. State Street, Trenton New Jersey 08608
609-394-2828



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