From the Philadelphia Inquirer:
It’s a very complex document, and, in our opinion, it is severely flawed,” [NJEA President Barbara Keshishian] said, “and there are numerous objectionable positions that we will not be in favor of.
Barbara Keshishian, president of the New Jersey Education Association, said Tuesday afternoon that affiliates should not sign local memorandums of understanding agreeing to the state’s proposal.
“It’s a severely flawed plan,” Keshishian said. “There are numerable objectionable provisions” regarding merit pay and using student test scores to evaluate teachers. The NJEA’s disapproval could significantly damage the state’s application for the federal grant, which seeks extensive community buy-in and requires union representatives’ signatures.
Christie, who has had a frosty relationship with the teachers union, said he was “disturbed” to hear the NJEA’s position. He said the NJEA “pretends to put kids first,” but instead “has become so insular and so self-interested” that it would turn down the chance at a cash infusion to help children learn.
Talking at a news conference in Newark, Christie said: “These are people who are so drastically out of touch with the crisis that we’re facing in New Jersey, both fiscally and educationally.”
Derrell Bradford, executive director of the bipartisan advocacy group Excellent Education for Everyone, criticized the NJEA for its step “to hamstring the state’s opportunity to get new money and drive reform so they can maintain the status quo.”