I will protect your pensions. Nothing about your pension is going to change when I am governor. - Chris Christie, "An Open Letter to the Teachers of NJ" October, 2009

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Heckuva Job, Schundlie!

You have got to be kidding me:
After making a high-profile bid for hundreds of millions of dollars in federal education reform money, New Jersey fell three points short of receiving "Race to the Top" funding, in part because of an error by the Christie administration in the state’s application, records obtained by The Star-Ledger show.
One five-point question on the application asked for budget information comparing the 2008 and 2009 school years. However, the state submitted information comparing the current year to 2011.
That mistake cost the state 4.8 points. The state lost points in other areas as well, the records show.
But how could they have made this mistake?
New Jersey’s application was submitted after a heated battle between Christie and the NJEA.
The union and hundreds of its local chapters had signed onto an earlier version of the application, in which Schundler had agreed to compromises on tenure and merit pay. But the administration hastily rewrote the application over the Memorial Day weekend, scrapping the agreed-to changes.
The final application, which was submitted without the backing of the NJEA, was driven to Washington the day of the deadline because the papers could not be faxed or e-mailed.
"On Friday of Memorial Day weekend we all signed off on the same application," Hiltner said. "By Tuesday morning, a different application had been submitted. How much time could have been put into that application?" (emphasis mine)
Here's the chronology: Schundler and the NJEA agreed on the initial application. But then Jim Gearhart, morning blowhard at NJ 101.5, decided he didn't like the idea of Christie's administration collaborating with the enemy (yes, in his mind, the teachers union is the enemy), and went off on a rant about the governor.

Apparently, when a radio DJ says "Jump!," Christie says, "Off of which bridge?", because Christie forced Schundler to rewrite the application at the last minute to make it more to Gearhart's liking. And then called the DJ to beg forgiveness.

Apparently, that last-minute rewrite didn't catch the fatal flaw. So now NJ loses out on the money because Chris Christie needed to appease a radio personality.

It's a stunning combination of ineptitude and cowardly pandering to your base. Remind you of anyone?

Heckuva job, Schundlie!

ADDING: Only the editorial board of the Star-Ledger could be so obtuse as to compare the NJEA's very real and serious objections to the revised RTTT application with a clerical error. But notice how conveniently they disappear the Gearhart connection to all of this.

But why point out the craven pandering of our governor when you can just take yet another shot at the NJEA? Liberal media, my ass.


Anonymous said...

Did he really ask for forgivness from a radio personality. Just as bad as Reagon running the country using fortune tellers.

Duke said...

He really did; well, actually, it was more like he deflected blame on his ed commish. You can hear the whole thing on Jim Gearhart's page at the NJ 101.5 website. It's a pathetic performance.

Thanks for posting.