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11-17-16 Education in the News

NJ Spotlight--Administration Poised To Ease Superintendent Salary Caps

Under new regulations, school leaders could earn $191,000 — not including bonuses and merit pay

After stringing the state along for months, the Christie administration has finally moved to amend New Jersey’s controversial caps on school superintendent pay, which could significantly loosen the current limits.

The state Department of Education released the regulations yesterday with a host of proposed rules that provide considerable flexibility to districts going forward, including vanquishing Gov. Chris Christie’s famous — some say infamous — cap of $175,000, his own salary.

Now, most districts — those with 3,000 or more students — will be able to go as high as $191,000, not including extra bonuses for merit and other considerations that could put pay over $200,000.

In addition, superintendents could see under the proposal pay going even higher to match cost-of-living increases and longevity.

“Based on feedback from school communities, we are offering greater flexibility for school districts to attract and keep quality superintendents, while still promoting fiscal efficiency,” said acting Education Commissioner Kimberley Harrington in a statement yesterday.


John Mooney | November 17, 2016


The Press of Atlantic City—Op-Ed--Our view: Scores improve on PARCC, which shows where more work is needed

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The standardized test results for individual students and schools released early this month show the expected continued improvement in line with the earlier statewide scores.

Steadily improving scores on the PARCC, or Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, were also expected simply because it’s a new test and everyone — students, teachers and parents — adapt to it and use it better over time. Spring’s test was only the second since it replaced the deficient High School Proficiency Assessment as the state’s (eventual) requirement for graduation.

Many South Jersey school districts did pretty well for year two. In four of them, more than half the students taking the Algebra I and English Language Arts grade 10 test achieved score levels that will be a graduation requirement for the class of 2021. In three districts, more than three-quarters of fourth-graders scored that well on their English test.

Also as expected, other districts with more low-income families are seeing much lower scores, with fewer than 20 percent of fourth-graders at passing levels. State officials said they’re seeing a performance gap of 20 to 30 percentage points between students not economically disadvantaged and those from low-income families.

That such differences exist has been known generally for decades. One advantage of a well-crafted statewide test is that it provides a tool for determining where district programs are insufficient and how to help them improve.


The Press of Atlantic City Editorial Board| November 17, 2016


Washington Post--Trump, a Common Core foe, considering Core supporters for education secretary

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, left, and former Florida governor Jeb Bush talk after the CNN Republican presidential debate at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum in Simi Valley, Calif., on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015. (Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press)

When Donald Trump was running for president, he said repeatedly that the Common Core State Standards initiative has been a “total disaster” and he would get rid of it if he landed in the White House.

And when he was duking it out with a gaggle of Republicans for the GOP presidential nomination, he went after former Florida governor Jeb Bush, a key Core supporter and a leader of corporate education reform, by calling him a “very, very low-energy” person who could put to sleep the people watching him speak.

Yet on Wednesday, asked during an interview on MSNBC to name women and people of color being considered for the Trump Cabinet, Trump spokesman Jason Miller offered the names of two women who have been allies of Bush and who have been Core supporters: Michelle Rhee and Eva Moskowitz.


By Valerie Strauss November 16 at 7:30 PM