And Paterson is now, apparently, the new center of reformyness here in New Jersey.
Start with the pressure teachers in Paterson are feeling to accept merit pay. According to the local teachers union, the latest contract offer is unprecedented in that it calls for doing away with all raises except for those tied to performance evaluations (and, inevitably, standardized tests). Incredibly, the president of the board of education doesn't even know the details of this offer, demonstrating just how little control the local citizens actually have over their schools.
Paterson also looks to be on the crest of a new wave of charter schools coming to Jersey. As Mother Crusader has reported (here, here, and here), Paterson stands ready to host a new charter whose founder has a record of abject failure, yet stands to cash out big thanks to tax laws favorable to education privatizers. Sources also tell me another charter coming into Paterson is aligned with the Gulen movement, which is already running a charter in Bergen County that has a decidedly different student population than the local public schools.
And then there's the story of Mike Miles - like NJDOE Commissioner Chris Cerf, a graduate of the Broad Superintendents
What, exactly, did the Broadie Miles accomplish for all that money in Paterson?
Challenging collective bargaining, disenfranchising teachers, expanding charters, overpaying for consultants... that's today's Paterson! I'll be keeping a close eye on the Silk City this year: it's quite likely the launching pad for the new reformyness that threatens to take over the entire state.
Paterson: home of reformyness, and Lou Costello!
ADDING: Darcie has even more about charters in Paterson. It's as bad as you think...