Sunday Leftovers

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Troubling piece in the Courier Post, which reports that test scores of Camden High’s students were suppressed last year because they were so bad: “Two years ago, 87 percent of Camden High’s students taking the High School Proficiency Assessment math test failed it. Last year, however, no data was reported by the state. The reason the state didn’t report the result is because more than 90 percent of the students who took the exam failed it. And, “To contrast this, 90 percent of students in the neighboring school district, in Cherry Hill High School West, passed the test. The figure is higher at Cherry Hill East, which had 93 percent of its students pass the test.”

New Jersey Newsroom again mistakes an NJEA press release for a legitimate news story.

The Record
defends Gov. Christie’s spending cuts: “We agree with the governor, that these are difficult times and that rainy day funds are needed when it is raining all over New Jersey. We urge all New Jerseyans to not be taken in by the hysteria sure to surface that public education will be irrevocably damaged. Christie is proposing a solution to the current budget shortfall. It may be a precursor of where he may go in developing a budget for next year, but the governor is correct: New Jersey does not have a revenue problem; it has a spending problem.”

The Star-Ledger Editorial Board says that Gov. Christie’s proposed pension and benefits reform doesn’t go far enough.

The Asbury Park Press grades the NJ School Report Cards and gives them a “ solid B,” mainly faulting the lack of context and a clumsy database: “If an overview had been provided this year, it should have noted that spending on the public schools in 2008-09 rose another 7.9 percent and explained why. It should have mentioned that the composite SAT score went up for the third straight year and, for the sake of perspective, pointed out that it remained below the national average, again offering reasons for why. It should have addressed the school funding equity issue, and analyzed the impact of former Gov. Jon Corzine’s changes in the funding formula.”

The Record points out that some Morris County superintendents are getting perks disallowed under new regulations because are in the midst of multi-year contracts. (Raises the question of how Gov. Christie could freeze teacher salaries, including those in the midst of multi-year contracts.)

A new organization is advocating for merging municipalities and school districts. Courage to Connect NJ, strives to show “the richness and diversity of New Jersey and how we can keep that diversity without separate costly governments.”

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