Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Christie Gets High Marks From All Quarters

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has been getting praise from all quarters for his education reform agenda and other steps he's taking in the Garden State.
Here is a sampling:

The Record:
“…we note that the governor's zeal to reform public education is genuine and his willingness to tackle any obstacle refreshing.” (“Education matters,” The Record, 9/5/201)

New York Post:
“…areas in which Christie insists he has no intention of compromising — like merit pay and abolishing seniority-based layoffs...The governor said he was so committed to the items on his reform agenda that “they should not be compromised to achieve a contrived consensus among the various affected special-interest groups.” Good for him…But it’s refreshing to see a politician who not only understands the need for serious education reform but is wholly committed to it — in action as well as words. Well done, governor.” (“Grade-A governor,” New York Post, 6/6/2010)

Philadelphia Inquirer:
“Christie vows to proceed with the changes he wants anyway. That could be good since some of his ideas are more in line with the reforms that the Obama administration wants to make to improve public education, including linking teachers' pay to student performance and making it easier to fire bad teachers. The plan would also eliminate seniority and use teacher effectiveness to make job cuts. Those are much-needed steps to improve failing schools and hold educators accountable for student achievement. It means rewarding the best teachers and principals.” (“Editorial: There's a better way,” Inquirer, 6/5/2010)

The Record:
“We need children to thrive in every one of our neighborhood public schools. That tough job will be done by teachers, not bureaucrats. Leadership is a tricky thing, and diagnosing problems and hypothesizing about big-picture improvements are a lot easier than actually improving education. The governor has made good headway on superintendent pay, with new caps and bonuses based on merit. Perhaps that can serve as a way forward on merit pay for teachers.” (“Race is on,” The Record, 8/1/2010)

The Star-Ledger:
“…build a data system to track student test scores more effectively so we can accurately assess teacher performance. That effort needs to move forward…” (“Own up, Governor: Race to the Top error was New Jersey's, not Obama's,” Star-Ledger Editorial Board, 8/26/2010)

Asbury Park Press:
“Christie is right to pursue some necessary changes, and the union is only hurting itself by fighting the changes at every turn, losing public sentiment along the way.” (Christie, teachers need to get along,” Asbury Park Press, 8/30/2010)

Daily Record:
"…the reforms were good ones. For instance, rewarding our best teachers with bonuses would be beneficial to the teacher, the school and the students.” (“The state's $400M blunder,” Daily Record, 8/26/2010)

Bruce McQuain, Washington Examiner:
“What he is doing is what government should be doing - freeing the citizenry to decide for themselves and forcing marginal or poor schools to heed their “customer base” or "go out of business". The message is market based but aimed at government run education - "the free ride is over". Christie points out that in Newark, NJ, taxpayers pay $24,000 per pupil per year. So in a class of 20 you have almost a half a million dollars spent. I'd like to say "invested" but it’s hard to do with a system Christie characterized as an "absolutely disgraceful public education system." So cheers to Christie.” (Bruce McQuain, “Speaking truth to power – New Jersey style,” Washington Examiner, 6/4/2010)

The Record:
“Though many New Jersey public schools are excellent, far too many, especially in poor cities, are failing their students. Reform must take hold in these communities. It is time to have a serious conversation about how.” (“Race to blame,” The Record, 8/26/2010)

Bob Ingle, Politics Patrol Blog:
“The problem is you can’t solve problems by throwing money at them. You need to rethink the way kids are educated…continuing what we have done in the past is not the answer.” (Bob Ingle, “Spending formulas don’t educate kids,” Politics Patrol, 8/30/2010)

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