N.J. education chief questioned on consulting work

    Ties to a group evaluating Newark schools may have an impact on the confirmation of New Jersey’s acting education commissioner.

    Christopher Cerf was the founder of a group that recommended some of Newark’s public schools be closed and replaced by charter schools. Cerf said he ended his association with Global Education Advisors before joining state government. He said he does not believe there is a conflict of interest.

    But state Senate judiciary committee chairman Nick Scutari said Thursday there are some issues his committee will explore.

    “Whether or not there’s a conflict I don’t know that answer, but there’s an appearance there that all the information that needs to be known has not been known in the past,” said Scutari. “We certainly want to get answers to those questions as to what affiliations he’s had, or what preconceptions he might bring to the process as a result of those affiliations.”

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    Scutari said a date has not been set for Cerf’s confirmation hearings.

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