Sunday Leftovers

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Tomorrow Camden Superintendent Paymon Rouhanifard and Mayor Dana Redd will, according to a press release, “celebrate new school-wide positive behavior pilots that promise to improve school culture in five District elementary and family schools.” This program, funded through a federal grant, is part of Rouhanifard’s strategic plan called the Camden Commitment. The roll-out will take place on Monday at 9:30 at the HB Wilson Family School Library.

In today’s New York Times, Frank Bruni ruminates on the public/media assumption that Jeb Bush and Hillary Clinton are  “semantically inseparable, presidentially conjoined,” and predestined to be the 2016 nominees: Jebary, he suggested, or Heb. But, argues Bruni,

EVEN Bush’s most ardent admirers don’t sell him as a rousing orator. Last April I happened to hear him give an education reform speech, at an event where Chris Christie had been the headliner the previous year, and the contrast was stark. Christie had come across as impassioned, unscripted. He filled and held the room. Bush was a phlegmatic blur. Afterward his supporters talked about and fretted over it.

The Star-Ledger summarizes the education platforms of Jeb Bush and Chris Christie. On the Common Core State Standards, Bush said, “I just don’t seem compelled to run for cover when I think this is the right thing to do for our country.” Christie, back-pedalling furiously from his former staunch support, for higher standards, said, “I have real concerns about Common Core.”

John Mooney at NJ Spotlight writes that 2014 “may be remembered as the first year that Gov. Chris Christie’s education reform agenda ran headlong into political realities, and the governor was forced to back off a bit on some of the key pieces of his plan.”

An Asbury Park Press columnist gives Gov. Christie a “C” in education: “Bashing teachers and undermining public schools has done nothing but hurt the morale of the people who are molding our future leaders. It has not helped students’ test scores or knowledge base in any way, measurable or anecdotal.”

Trenton Central High School valedictorian Ana Esqueda arrived in the U.S. from Venezuela at age nine; according to the Trenton Times, “she didn’t know a word of English.” Ana’s  just been accepted at Princeton University on a full scholarship.

The Record: “Rutgers University has been awarded $550,000 in federal funds to continue research identifying and evaluating changes in children with autism spectrum disorders and other developmental disabilities in New Jersey, it was announced Friday.”

The Star-Ledger  reviews the hazing scandal in Sayreville.

Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon (R-Monmouth) thinks that N.J.’s neediest urban districts can be funded at $12,000 per student.

Via the Huffington Post, CNN commentator Ashley Killough tweeted on Saturday, “Rand Paul’s team buying ad space for google searches on ‘Huckabee announcement’ & ‘Huckabee common core.'”

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