Wednesday, July 29, 2015

ICYMI: In school aid fight, one mother feels led astray by Christie

In case you missed it, in Sunday's paper we focused on one mother in the Swedesboro-Woolwich school district who will be watching Gov. Christie's big budget address on Tuesday with sharpened interest.

ICYMI: In school aid fight, one mother feels led astray by Christie

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Jennifer Cavallaro, with Olivia, 8, and Jackson, 3, has been fighting to get more funding for Swedesboro-Woolwich. (April Saul / Staff Photographer)
Jennifer Cavallaro, with Olivia, 8, and Jackson, 3, has been fighting to get more funding for Swedesboro-Woolwich. (April Saul / Staff Photographer)

In case you missed it, in Sunday's paper we focused on one mother in the Swedesboro-Woolwich school district who will be watching Gov. Christie's big budget address on Tuesday with sharpened interest.

Figures flow from Jennifer Cavallaro's memory as she recounts her futile crusade for an extra million bucks for her son's school district in Gloucester County.

Nine: That's how many Gov. Christie town hall meetings the 35-year-old mother of two attended. She always arrived five hours early to ensure a front-row seat, and the governor called on her to speak eight times.

Fifty: That's how many supporters joined her at the Hammonton town hall last March, when Christie himself encouraged Cavallaro to push for legislation to supplement funding for the Swedesboro-Woolwich School District, which spends only half as much per pupil as the state average. "I will help you," the governor told her.

And 4 p.m.: That's the time she got a call one day last month from an apologetic governor's aide, saying Christie would veto the bill she had shepherded through the Legislature at his suggestion.

"I was devastated," Cavallaro said.

On Tuesday - day 612 of this quest for more money for a handful of Gloucester County districts struggling with skyrocketing enrollment - Cavallaro will head to state Assembly chambers to watch Christie deliver a budget address that, she hopes, will offer a solution.

Read the rest of the story, here.

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