In the News
Newark Trust’s Candidates’ Forum Tackles District-wide Challenges
The discussion, hosted by the Newark Trust for Education's Committee of Advocates, touched on several of the pressing issues facing the district. They included the merit pay provision in the recently adopted contract between the district and the Newark Teachers' Union, the effect of district charter schools as well as school closings and teacher layoffs.
But at almost every step, the candidates argued for local control over the district. The New Jersey Department of Education has held the district's administrative reins since 1995.
"This school board election is critical," said forum moderator Richard Cammarieri, a former advisory board member and lifelong Newark resident. "With a budget that surpasses the city's budget by $300 million, we have a moral, civic and financial responsibility to vote on April 16."
From the Theoretical to the Practical: How to Bridge the Achievement Gap
With recent data showing that the vast majority of high-achieving students from low-income neighborhoods don't apply to selective colleges or universities, concerns over an ever-growing achievement gap continue to hang over Newark's schools and families.
That achievement gap, largely considered a national crisis, was the focus of a March 14 panel discussion held by the Newark Trust for Education's Committee of Advocates.
"As Newark Public Schools works to launch reform initiatives to accelerate district-wide academic achievement, we need to examine some key challenges facing our youth," said Trust President and CEO Ross Danis.
Newark school board candidates change tone on charter schools
"We should stop the street fighting between charter schools and public schools," said candidate and interim board member Ariagna Perello. "If a charter school works, guess what? Let's share best practices."
Perello, who assumed the seat vacated by Shanique Speight last year, is running on the Children First ticket, a three-candidate slate backed by a coalition of city leaders that, in the past, has been wary of charter schools.
School Advisory Board Candidates Meet for Forum
Read this article as it originally appeared on Patch.com
Five of the six candidates seeking seats on the Newark School Advisory Board met Thursday at Essex County College for a forum to discuss issues ranging from charter schools to the performance of state-appointed superintendent Cami Anderson.
Three seats are up for election April 16.
The forum, hosted by the Newark Trust for Education, was moderated by Richard Cammarieri of the New Community Corp., who read a series of questions to the candidates. The candidates did not debate each other but did offer sometimes divergent views on a number of issues.
Finding Newark schools' millions: Opinion
Read this op-ed as it originally appeared in the March 20 Star-Ledger.
The recent resignation of Greg Taylor from his position as president and CEO of the Foundation for Newark’s Future has set tongues wagging throughout New Jersey’s education community.
If only there was as much critical conversation about the effectiveness of the many generous grants made to our public schools by a multitude of philanthropic foundations, including Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s Startup Foundation, which has pledged $100 million in matching funds to the FNF to help Newark schools.
But such conversation remains difficult, in part, because we still don’t have a reliable way to measure the effectiveness of the city’s education philanthropy.
NJTV: Philanthropy in Newark Education
Trust President and CEO Ross Danis sat down with NJTV's Mike Schieder to discuss the role of philanthropy in Newark education.
Plentiful School Gifts, But Unfocused
'Literacy through yoga'? Maybe well-intentioned philanthropy in education needs better tracking.
Read this article as it originally appeared in the March 6, 2013 edition of The Wall Street Journal (may need a subscription)
When Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg hosted a fundraising event at his home in Palo Alto, Calif., last month for New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, the event set tongues wagging. The billionaire's interest in the New Jersey politician was thoroughly dissected by the chattering class. Too bad there hasn't been as much interest in analyzing Mr. Zuckerberg's $100 million commitment to support the struggling public schools in Newark, N.J., or in studying the effectiveness of the many other education grants made by foundations to help in Newark.
To be fair, it is difficult to judge how well the philanthropy in Newark is working because precious few data have been collected. Truly useful metrics, therefore, haven't been developed. The gap between good intentions and measurable results will be familiar anywhere in the country where philanthropies join efforts to improve education.