Welcome to Laurie Goodman's blog. I use this space to share news and opinions about education and schools in Ridgewood, the state of New Jersey and the nation, in addition to other issues I'm personally interested in. I invite you to share your thoughts, feelings, questions or opinions, too, by posting comments on any blog entry. Please observe basic courtesy -- keep your comments focused on issues, no personal attacks or bullying, please. Contact me directly at: lauriegood@mac.com

Friday, April 2, 2010

Bad Friday for NJEA

On a day when I have too much work to do for my clients and no time to post, it's nice to run across a good post from another blog, NJ Left Behind. Reprinted (reposted?) here:

Two highly regarded columnists – Kevin Manahan of the Star-Ledger and Alfred Doblin of The Record – take a cohort of teachers and the NJEA leadership to task today for, respectively, infantile behavior on Facebook and calamitous stewardship.

Manahan describes profane language plus poor grammar and spelling on the the New Jersey Teachers United Against Governor Christie’s Pay Freeze page.

Peter Griffin, supervisor of the music department at Hopewell Valley Regional High School, who makes $114,787 a year, asked on Facebook: "How do you spell A--hole? C-H-R-I-S C-H-R-I-S-T-I-E. To those of you who voted for this fat piece of sh-t, shame on you!"…These are the same teachers who demand to be treated like professionals. What’s next, Chris Christie poopy jokes?

Doblin looks specifically at the NJEA leadership team, whom have eschewed Gov. Christie’s request for a one-year salary freeze, in spite of the fact that such a gracious move would save at least a few jobs by lowering payroll costs and increasing state aid. Our school districts are 600 Titanics and Christie is “one sharp piece of ice.”

The NJEA either can hold firm while it watches hundreds of its members lose jobs or it can blink and save many union jobs while gaining credibility with taxpayers. The answer is so easy to see. But the same might have been said on April 14, 1912, about a large chunk of ice.

Can the NJEA resuscitate its image? A goodwill gesture of a one-year salary freeze would serve everyone well, especially students and (mostly young, non-tenured) teachers about to join the ranks of the unemployed. Can NJEA's leadership muster the good sense and strategic foresight necessary? Stay tuned.

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