Lame-duck N.J. Legislature to tackle education measures

Education measures are high on the list of priorities for the lame-duck session of the New Jersey Legislature. The state’s largest teachers union has offered some proposals for change.

Steve Baker, a spokesman for the New Jersey Education Association, said the union supports a streamlined process to firing tenured teachers who are not effective.

The NJEA also wants more preschool programs, full-day kindergarten, and smaller class sizes in early grades, Baker said.

“If we’re going to have a serious discussion about education reform, we ought to be talking about everything that works and talking about setting our priorities so that we can give the best possible opportunities to our students,” he said.

Baker, who said the union hasn’t estimated the costs of those proposals, said it’s up to the Legislature to set funding priorities.

A spokesman for Gov. Chris Christie said that while the union is moving in the right direction, the proposals don’t go far enough to achieve real education reform.

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