N.J. lawmakers question school project selection

    Some New Jersey lawmakers say they’re still not clear about the process used to select schools for new construction projects in the state’s poorest districts.

    Schools Development Authority CEO Marc Larkins told members of the Assembly Education Committee Tuesday that a scoring system to determine the need for the projects was only a starting point. He said other factors, including cost effectiveness and design standardization, also were used to pick the 10 projects that will move forward.

    Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson Coleman was not satisfied with that explanation.

    “What we’re trying to understand and establish is what are the criteria? What is the definition of things like efficient that you’re using, and is there really the application of any criteria, or if these schools emerged on the list for some other reason,” she said.

    Larkins said he’ll make an effort to tell officials in each school district left off the construction list just why they didn’t get funding and how to advance their projects in the future.

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