Dispute erupts over school reform in Newark, N.J.

Matthew Zalaznick's picture
Monday, March 10, 2014

More than three years after Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg committed $100 million toward remaking Newark’s struggling schools, the district is engulfed in a dispute over proposed large-scale teacher layoffs that’s threatening to derail wider reform efforts.

Nearly half the money has been invested in a 2012 teacher contract that was hailed by Gov. Chris Christie and the nation’s top teacher’s union official as an example of adversaries joining forces to rebuild a struggling urban school district. The contract, partially funded by the Facebook money, made Newark the state’s first district to allow for teacher merit pay and peer reviews.

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