Education Commissioner Chris Cerf has intervened in the dispute between the Perth Amboy School Board and Superintendent Janine Caffrey. Last month the Board there dismissed her but failed to garner a majority: the vote was 4-0.
Caffrey has been an outspoken advocate for tenure reform. In an editorial published in the Star-Ledger she explained,
We are fortunate to have the dedication of hundreds of committed and talented teachers and administrators who focus on education every day. But for 15 to 20 percent of each week, I shift focus from our students, who should be at the center of all we do, to certain adults who no longer have a place in our education system, yet simply can’t be dismissed.
She’s also been unwilling to follow the culture of the Perth Amboy board, which includes hiring board members’ relatives and friends. And she’s cooperating in a DOE investigation of School Board President Samuel Lebreault, who tried to get free lunch for his kids even though his income disqualifies his family from this benefit.