Friday, August 29, 2014
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Fine Print: Unions Withhold Support for Newark's New 'Race to the Top' Bid

What is it: Newark Public Schools under state-appointed Superintendent Cami Anderson yesterday filed its application to the federal Race to the Top competition, seeking up to $30 million for new programs to enhance "personalized learning" and to advance technology. The district was a finalist last year with a similar proposal, but fell short.

Fine Print: Unions Withhold Support for Newark’s New ‘Race to the Top’ Bid

What is it: Newark Public Schools under state-appointed Superintendent Cami Anderson yesterday filed its application to the federal Race to the Top competition, seeking up to $30 million for new programs to enhance “personalized learning” and to advance technology. The district was a finalist last year with a similar proposal, but fell short.

What is missing In a battle that spilled into the public yesterday, the Newark Teachers Union refused to sign on to the application, contending it was never consulted and didn’t agree with much of the plan.

Dead on arrival: Union support is one of the requirements of the application process. Nevertheless, Anderson made a last-ditch effort to get an exception, sending a letter to U.S. Secretary Arne Duncan that listed what she said were more than 20 times that her office reached out to the union. Noting that the application is not much different from last year’s, she asked that the NTU’s support of the 2012 proposal be used instead.

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