How Fair is “Fair”? School funding, donations and the Cheshire Cat

You decide:  You say that you want everyone to take the bus to the game. The bus costs $3.00.  Jerry has three dollars, Stacey has $2.50 and Eddie has $2.00. Ok , you say, I’ll give everyone $.50 so they can take the bus.  That’s fair, everyone gets

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Is mayoral control the answer to local control? Maybe not.

Two interesting reports were released Oct 12: one on fairness in school funding and the other on mayoral control of schools. I’ll write about the school funding report later. But for now, let’s consider mayoral control of schools as a possible way to return to local control.

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Paterson School Board workshop meeting 10/6; wrestling with bad news

Most of the news wasn’t good. Spring 2010 test scores were mostly down. One hundred eighty-six seniors didn’t pass the final exit exam and were denied diplomas. The board had lots of ideas about what to do that include all of us, especially parents, in motivating students.

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QSAC Stars in Trenton: Will we ever return to local control?

Yesterday I attended the Joint committee on Public Schools meeting.  Here are a few things I thought noteworthy. Senator Rice asked some very pointed questions about QSAC.  He wanted to know: the implementation process, how many districts had been evaluated, how many were in each level of monitoring

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Will we ever have local control? Twenty years and counting QSAC

On Tuesday, October 5, the Joint Committee on the Public Schools will hold a hearing on state takover. Our legislators want to know how the NJ QSAC law is working. We can tell you- not very well. Ever since the first QSAC evaluation was delivered in a

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Where’s the Data? How do we have “data-based” accountability with insufficient data?

Governor Christie said this week that NJ should “promote innovative and effective teaching by valuing student achievement over seniority” and “demand accountability and results for New Jersey’s children with data-supported (teacher) evaluations.” The problem is that we don’t have this data! It’s the same data we couldn’t

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12 things you can do to help Paterson schools: Our children need you!

Twelve Things You Can Do to Change Paterson Public Schools Making change in Paterson is NOT a spectator sport!  We need everyone’s help to move forward. Here are 12 things you can do to make change. 1. Take action, don’t just grumble. Legislators, school board members and newspapers can’t

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Looking a gift horse in the mouth: Zuckerberg’s millions for Newark schools

Two different reporters called me yesterday about Zuckerberg’s $100 million gift to Newark schools. They asked if private dollars can substitue for public dollars in our schools. It is clear that they don’t understand how much money it takes to run our schools. Or how fickle donors

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School Construction Update:The SDA says keeping waiting patiently

I don’t know about you, but I’m frustrated and angry about the state of New Jersey school construction. Twelve years ago in 1998, the NJ Supreme Court ordered the state to build new schools in the Abbott districts [now SDA districts] to replace old, dilapidated schools. At that

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Excess Surplus at the School Board and College Bound Students

We’ve promised to follow the Paterson School Board meetings. Here’s some highlights from September 15th’s meeting. The meeting was called to order at 7:18 with six members present. The final three were present by 7:40 pm. Some of you have asked why we are giving you the

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451 Van Houten Street
Paterson, NJ 07501
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F: 973.881.8059

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Paterson Education Fund (PEF)

PEF activates students, parents, community members, and schools to adopt winning strategies for teaching and learning. PEF’s critical investments expand educators’ and families’ vision of what Paterson children can do.