Archive for May, 2014

2014 Condition of Education

This latest annual – Condition of Education 2014 – is a vast compilation of data addressing the entire education sector, from pre-K to grad school. The report contains hundreds of figures and tables ranging from educational attainment (with international comparisons) to student finances. The place to come for updated information.

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Economic Crisis – May 2014 Update

The Low-Wage Recovery (National Employment Law Project); Snapshot of older consumers and mortgage debt (Consumer Financial Protection Bureau); and The exit from non-conventional monetary policy: what challenges? (BIS).

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Maya Angelou and Libraries

Remembering Maya Angelou from the American Library Association has selected quotes from her involving libraries. In her long distinguished career, she was the target of many censorship challenges. Read about I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings and how its banning was the spark that founded Banned Books Week.

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How Much Money Was Spent in Each New Jersey School District?

The recently-released Taxpayers’ Guide to Education Spending 2014 details what each school district received in the way of local, state, and federal funding. For example, Jersey City was the recipient of $661 million – 76% from the state, 16.4% from local taxes, 5.3% from federal sources, and 2.3% from other revenue streams. This equates to $23,273 spent per pupil. These figures are buttressed by numerous other data points called indicators (21 in all). You can search via district or group (here you can find charter schools listed).

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Jersey City’s Population Explosion; Newark’s Slower Growth

According to the Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places of 50,000 or More, Ranked by July 1, 2013 Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2013 – United States — Places Over 50,000 Population just released by the Census Bureau, Jersey City added almost 10,000 residents (247,643 to 257,342), while Newark grew by about 1300 (277,138 to 278,427). For comparative purposes, you might want to peruse Jersey City’s 2011 amended An Unofficial Handbook to the Circulation Element of the Master Plan.

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“Bridgegate” Hearings

For those who want to keep up with these hearings, transcripts from the New Jersey Legislative Select Committee on Investigation are all online. Also, video or audio presentations of the hearings (as of this writing, the latest is May 20, 2014) are also available.

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Governor Christie Cuts State Pension Payments

Governor Christie, facing revenue shortfalls and a constitutional mandate to have a balanced budget stated: “I have made the decision that we are not going to blindside our students, we are not going to blindside our seniors, our higher education institutions or those who rely on the safety net the state provides to balance the budget with only six weeks left in the fiscal year.” (video and transcript) Therefore, absent any other revenue-producing fees or taxes, he has substantially cut payments into the state workers’ pension plan. NJ Spotlight has a good overview of decision along with numerous links. Here is the NJEA’s statement, calling this “illegal and reckless.” Bloomberg News, Wall Street Journal, PolitickerNJ, New Jersey Policy Perspective, and nj.com provide additional coverage/analysis. 10am and 1pm hearings before the Assembly’s Budget Committee today will be broadcast live.

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