Senator blocks N.J. education chief

    A New Jersey lawmaker is blocking the confirmation of Gov. Chris Christie’s choice for education commissioner.

    Sen. Ron Rice is using the privilege known as senatorial courtesy to prevent Chris Cerf from being confirmed.

    Cerf can continue to serve as acting education commissioner.

    But Joseph DePierro, dean of the College of Education at Seton Hall University, said the confirmation issue does not inspire confidence in the governor’s ability to achieve his education reform agenda.

    “I think you have to consider this is the context of his original appointee being fired,” he said. “So it does point to some sort of instability in Christie’s ability to keep a commissioner going.”

    DePierro said the confrontational approach to making changes in education, instead of collaboration, is not the way to get things done.

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