The Christie Administration just hired the Council of Chief State School Officers to help the New Jersey Department of Education develop school turnaround strategies. They are being paid $1.55 million to do this.
The project will be two-pronged: First, help with the establishment of the state’s still-evolving Regional Achievement Centers (RACs), the immediate hubs for school improvement efforts; second, study long-term interventions for schools that still don’t improve, right up to direct state control.
Announced last month, the project has drawn some extra scrutiny, given the high stakes for schools and districts. One of the Christie administration’s more aggressive options laid out in its grant proposal for the work was a so-called achievement school district that would oversee individual schools across the state, akin to the state-controlled “recovery districts” in Louisiana and Tennessee.
That grant application was to the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, a California-based organization known for its reform philosophy and leadership efforts. The Broad Foundation will be funding the CCSSO project.
But executives of the national council said this week that the CCSSO team comes into the project with “no preconceived notions” as to what it thinks would work best in New Jersey.
They don’t have preconceived notions regarding New Jersey, that’s funny… they seemed to think they knew what was best for every state in the union when they developed the Common Core State Standards along with the National Governors’ Association.
Well we know what standards they’ll be pushing anyway.