According to date, there are 2,491 schools ( 2.6% of national total) and 1,370,535 students (2.8% of national total) expected to return to middle and high schools in New Jersey come September, 2011. (Source: New Jersey Public School Statistics). This exclude the data from private and religious schools. But is the State Board of Education all’s set for the coming school year and is ready to welcome the students?
Months before the opening of classes, the department has already taken steps to prepare all public elementary and high schools across the state. With the ten (10) new charter schools opening, a well crafted budget approved for all its schools in the district and a new academic education reform planned to be in place, will these be enough assurance that nothing will hinder this year’s school openings? What are the consequences of the recent US credit downgrading? Analysts predicted that its recent ripple effects will not only bring new economic recession that leads to new job losses and lay-offs, but will also bring more closures of private schools and the least, public schools. What will parents and teachers who likewise are parents expect from these then? Dr. Krebbs, a teacher education professor at a leading New Jersey College opined’ “this development not only brings fears but will lead to more belt tightening among the constituency due to a new height of uncertainty in the US economy”.
Capital out flight might also result to shutting down of businesses which recently had just started to be alive again. Chances are, the goal of producing high graduation rates and students performances from the education sector might also be affected.
Recently, the State Board of Education inducted its President and Vice President for 2011-12 Academic Year. Arcelio Aponte was re-elected president and Mr. Ilan Plawker as vice president for the 2011-12 academic year.
Aponte is the director of operations and management for the City of Newark’s Department of Economic and Housing Development. He holds a master of arts in business administration from Rutgers University and a bachelor of science in electronic engineering technology from The College of New Jersey.
With Aponte’s re-election he was certain that the Department will be able to fully implement its plan to prepare NJ students to be successful in school and to be able to work in a 21st century economy driven by information, knowledge and innovation.
Despite all of these aforementioned woes, and not to discount a 9/11 “scare tale”, New Jersey through Gov. Christie also looks forward to his promise way back in April , “2011 is going to be the year of education reform in New Jersey and I will not keep quiet until we get it done for every kid in this state.” (Michael Drewniak and Kevin Roberts: Governor Christie on Education: Reinvigorate, Reward, Reform, State of New Jersey, April 7, 2011).
So there, with this hope, New Jersey residents need not fear but remain vigilant and positive that all’s well that ends well. Let’s drink to that!