On Friday the NJ DOE released its “Taxpayers Guide to Education Spending July 2012.” Unlike other calculations, this per pupil cost algorithm incorporates transportation, special revenues, pension and benefits paid by the state, facilities (including debt service), equipment, total food services, judgments against the school district, and tuition/costs for students sent out of district. Coverage from the Star-Ledger and Press of Atlantic City, which “shows the average annual per-student cost dropped from $17,787 in 2009-10 to $17,352 in 2010-11.” Outliers include the Vineland Charter School, at $10,362 per student,” and Bergen County Special Services School District, which “had the highest total per student cost statewide in 2010-11 at $89,831.”
Once again the Senate Judiciary Committee will consider whether Chris Cerf should be NJ’s Education Commissioner. (He’s held this post for two years. Why would the Judiciary Committee draw attention to its irrelevance in this spitting war? Who knows.) Star-Ledger coverage here.
The NJ DOE proceeds with its new rating system for teachers and, new this year, principals. A $1.4 million grant will be shared by 34 districts to implement the pilot. Here’s NJ Spotlight and Star-Ledger coverage.
The Courier-Post profiles Rueben Mills, Camden’s new “Acting Interim Superintendent,” who was cast into the “highly provisional job” after Superintendent Bessie LeFra Young was ousted by the School Board.
NJ Spotlight and the Star-Ledger examine the nine new charter schools approved by the DOE. None are online charters, which are hotly opposed by Education Law Center, NJEA, and Assembly Education Chair Patrick Diegnan, although two — Newark Prep and Merit Preparatory Of Newark Charter will offer “blended learning” in a school setting. (More on that from NJ Spotlight.)
The Asbury Park Press looks at the (not so new) trend of parents “red-shirting” young children, i.e., delaying their entry into preschool or kindergarten, in order to give them an competitive advantage.
Correction: The Executive Director of NJ Principals and Supervisors Union is Patricia Wright. Richard Bozza is the Executive Director of NJ Association of School Administrators.