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11-10-16 Education in the News

New Jersey Spotlight--How President Trump Will Alter New Jersey’s Policies and Programs

It may be too early to get a sense of the specifics, but it is incontrovertible: Change is coming to the Garden State

The election of Donald Trump to the presidency, together with a Republican-led Congress, will impact many of the programs New Jerseyans have either come to rely on in the past or had hoped to work with in the future.


Lee Keough | November 10, 2016


Press of Atlantic City--A.C. school voucher question fails, but not by a lot

ATLANTIC CITY — School vouchers did not get overwhelming support from residents in Tuesday’s election, but they got enough interest to make the teachers union a bit nervous and the city councilman who sponsored the question a bit hopeful.

Based on results at the polls, the measure to allow students in the city to receive up to $10,000 a year to attend a private or other public school failed by a vote of 3,872 to 3,244, with just more than half of voters rejecting the proposal.

A second question about providing property-tax credits to families who homeschool their children failed by a wider margin, 4,109 to 2,491.

Absentee ballots have not yet been included, so the total could change.

Councilman Jesse Kurtz, a primary sponsor of the nonbinding voucher question, said he is pleased it got the support it did considering the effort the local teachers union put into defeating the measure.

“We were so outgunned,” he said. “They did six mailers. We barely had the money for one.”

Marcia Genova, president of the Atlantic City Education Association, said the union is relieved the question did not pass but concerned the vote was that close.

“It shows that most people are satisfied with the public schools,” she said. “But we have to continue to promote all we do. It was a little too close for comfort.”

Kurtz, who homeschools his children, said he would like the voucher issue to remain on the table as the city works out its future. Atlantic City could be at the forefront of a voucher movement in the state, he said.


DIANE D’AMICO Staff Writer| 16 hrs ago


Washington Post--Mass. charters, Ga. school takeovers: Voters decide four education ballot questions

With their arms orderly folded and rested on their desks, kindergarten students listen to their teacher at Democracy Prep Congress Heights in southeast Washington in this file photo from 2014. An effort to expand charter schools in Massachusetts failed at the polls. (Photo by Astrid Riecken/For The Washington Post)

Though the presidential race cliffhanger was taking up most of the political oxygen Tuesday night, there were also important education policy developments in the states. Here’s how four high-profile ballot initiatives fared:


Voters rejected one of the most fiercely contested and expensive ballot initiatives in the nation, which would have allowed for the opening of up to 12 charter schools per year and for the expansion of existing charter schools.

Opponents — including state and national teachers’ unions, Boston Mayor Martin Walsh (D) and Democratic Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren — had argued that the rapid expansion of charter schools would drain traditional public schools of essential resources. The defeat is the latest in a string of rebukes of the charter school movement, including a recent resolution by the national NAACP calling for a moratorium on new charter schools until there is an assurance of greater accountability and transparency of charters’ fiscal and academic performance.


Voters appear to have rejected a constitutional amendment that would have allowed the state to take over “chronically failing” public schools in a new “Opportunity School District.” Opponents saw the measure, backed by Gov. Nathan Deal (R), as a way to speed the conversion of traditional public schools to public charter schools. A similar state-run district has struggled in Tennessee.


By Emma Brown November 9 at 12:43 AM