NEA president visits Camden school

Lily Eskelsen García, the newly elected president of the 3 million-member National Education Association (NEA), visited Pyne Poynt Middle School in Camden on Friday, where she met with staff, visited classrooms and spoke to students. García, the NEA’s first Latina president, has established a reputation as a blunt, outspoken opponent of what she calls “toxic testing,” which she believes has corrupted public education and detracted from focusing on the real needs of students. Read More

November 2014

5

NJEA Executive Committee Meeting

5

NJREA Annual Meeting (ends 11/6)

8

NJEA Delegate Assembly Meeting

15

NJEA Member Family Involvement Conference

16

American Education Week (ends 11/22)

19

Educational Support Professionals Day

INSIGHT & OPINION
NEWS
FOCUS NJEA

A union call to scale back school testing

On The TableDo you remember a teacher or other school employee who made a difference in your life? Perhaps someone who really brought an academic subject to life, or who simply helped you through a difficult time? How about a class or subject that thrilled you and made you want to learn more and more, even after you’d completed your assignments and passed the final exam? Now think back to all of the standardized tests you’ve ever taken. Remember that one SAT analogy question that set you on the course to your future career? The multiple choice math problem that gave you the courage to try something you’d always been afraid to attempt before? If you are struggling to come up with something, don’t feel bad. Neither of us can either, because while standardized tests have long been a part of public education, until recently, they’ve never been mistaken for its point and purpose. Read More

EDITORIAL

Camden's Corporate Con
New Jersey’s urban school districts have long been the targets of the corporate “reformers” who seek to privatize their funding. That’s been particularly true in the state takeover districts, with Newark and Camden singled out by the Christie administration for full frontal assaults. Read More

MEMBERS IN THE NEWS

Trenton Thunder School Heroes
School heroes honored by NJEA, Thunder

True heroes don’t wear capes or possess superpowers. True heroes make a difference in the lives of children. That’s why NJEA and the Trenton Thunder teamed up to honor some students and their school heroes. Read More

Eileen Radetich
NJEA member wins college’s top teaching award
A professor known for her zest for life and learning – both inside and outside the classroom – has won the top instructional award available to Camden County College faculty. Read More

NJ State Teacher of the Year wins national award for teaching excellence
Kathleen Assini, an eighth grade social studies teacher at Delsea Regional Middle School in Franklinville, and the 2013-14 NJ Teacher of the Year, will receive the 2015 California Casualty Award for Teaching Excellence, one of public education’s most prestigious awards. Assini is among 39 public educators who will be honored at the NEA Foundation’s Salute to Excellence in Education Gala to be held in Washington, DC on February 13, 2015. Read More

PARTNERSHIPS

Roberta Rissling
Making a difference
Roberta Rissling has been a paraprofessional in the Township of Franklin Public Schools for the past ten years. She finds it extremely rewarding to work in the community where she lives. She works one-on-one with students who need extra help. She loves her job because she is making a big difference in the lives of her students. Read More

INNOVATION IN EDUCATION

Deciphering the code
Think understanding computer technology is just about learning how to use Word and Excel?  Think again!  These days, students are being taught coding, the language of computer science, to add to their 21st century skill set.  In fact, it’s estimated that one in every 10 schools in New Jersey now offers classes in coding for students at all grade levels. Read about how some NJEA members and their students caught the attention of Inside Jersey magazine and learn how their classrooms are joining the coding movement.

Liberty Science Center Teacher Appreciation Day

Other Blogs/Sites

Headline News

On the Web

ClassWish.org is a nonprofit organization that lets anybody make tax-deductible contributions to fund any resources for any school or any teacher in the country. Teachers, administrators and officers of teacher-parent organizations can create a Wish List of the resources their students need to succeed, and supporters can contribute toward school-wide needs at any K-12 school or towards specific teacher needs. More On-the-Web resources

Media Gallery

Visit the Media Gallery to view photos, videos, and audio files from NJEA's television show, Classroom Close-up, NJ, special events, NJEA's television and radio commercials, and more.

Pine Hill ESP testifies before Senate Committee

John Staab
NJEA member John Staab, a school building maintenance employee in the Pine Hill School District, testified before the Senate Labor Committee in support of S-1717, a bill which would prevent employers from discharging or charging a personal day to an employee for failure to report to work during a state of emergency. Read More

MORE ISSUES & ACTION

All members invited to Fall Focus meetings

Fall Focus
What's the right place to meet and greet and start the year off right? At NJEA's County Fall Focus meetings, members are able to meet their local, county and state association leaders and learn about important issues facing public school employees. Read More

MORE ISSUES & ACTION

NJDOE holds student growth objective (SGO) workshops

There’s still time to register for a three-hour, interactive workshop conducted by the New Jersey Department of Education’s (NJDOE) Office of Evaluation. The workshops focus on the use of high-quality assessments and a variety of baseline data to set targets when creating student growth objectives (SGOs). Read More

MORE TEACHING & LEARNING

Communications Tools Workshop

Communications Tools Workshop
Does your local association have a social media strategy? Wondering what should and shouldn’t be posted on your association website? Want to learn how to use your smartphone as a communications tool? On Saturday, Oct. 25, join the NJEA Editorial Committee and association staff at the 2014 NJEA Communications Tools Workshop and learn how to better connect with members and the public. Read More

MORE TEACHING & LEARNING

Join Team NJEA and Race (or sleep in!) for the Cure

Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure
Once again, NJEA will participate in the annual Susan G. Komen Central and South Jersey race for the Cure on Sunday, Oct. 5, 2014, at Six Flags Great Adventure, Jackson, NJ. It’s a great day to raise funds for a great cause, honor the memory of those we’ve lost, and celebrate the survivors. Read More

MORE PARENTS & COMMUNITY

Belleville EA president wins tenure battle

Rally for a Better Belleville
Who says nice guys finish last? Certainly not BEA President Mike Mignone. Mignone found himself suspended without pay and fighting for his professional career simply for speaking out against injustice. Read More

MORE NEWS & PUBLICATIONS

NJDOE to gather input on technology, career standards

Technology
From now through Sept. 17, educators and the public have the opportunity to comment on changes to the Core Curriculum Content Standards in Technology and 21st Century Life and Careers. The proposed revisions were introduced at the Aug. 6 State Board of Education meeting. Read More

MORE ISSUES & ACTION

NJEA: Stop Renaissance school expansion

“An out-of-control corporate takeover of Camden schools”

Wendell Steinhauer
NJEA President Wendell Steinhauer today urged the Legislature to oppose proposed changes in the Urban Hope Act, saying they would “expand an already out-of-control corporate takeover of the Camden Public Schools” by two national charter school companies. Read More

MORE NEWS & PUBLICATIONS

Verizon Innovative App Challenge

Win $20,000 for your school

Verizon App Challenge
The Verizon Innovative App Challenge offers a unique opportunity for students around the country to participate in a rich, project-based learning experience that fosters teamwork and encourages them to explore new ideas.
Read More

MORE TEACHING & LEARNING

TPAF, in reversal, votes to retain outside counsel

Seeks advice on pension lawsuits

On July 10, the Teachers Pension and Annuity Fund (TPAF) Board of Trustees voted to seek outside counsel to advise them in the increasingly complex legal environment surrounding pension funding. In reversing a June 5 vote not to seek outside counsel, the TPAF Board now joins two other pension boards in seeking legal advice to assist in determining their fiduciary responsibility for funding the pension system under Chapter 78. Read More

MORE NEWS & PUBLICATIONS

9,000 delegates gather in Denver

Elect new officers, vote to end 'toxic testing'

2014 NEA - RA
More than 500 delegates from New Jersey joined nearly 9,000 NEA colleagues from across the nation at the 2014 National Education Association Representative Assembly in Denver July 3-6. Read More

MORE NEWS & PUBLICATIONS

Welcome to NJEA

We are proud to count you as a member of the nation’s premiere education association. In challenging times such as these, NJEA members must remain united to promote a quality system of public education for all students and protect our profession. NJEA is a diverse, democratic organization working to create an optimal environment to achieve excellence in public education in New Jersey. Your membership in NJEA helps you and your colleagues to meet your goals through our commitment to: • Member advocacy: To preserve and improve the economic interests, working conditions, job security, and pensions of all members. • Organizing: To strengthen the Association by maximizing membership, developing leadership, and supporting affiliates. • Enhancing public education: To promote and deliver quality professional development for educators as well as advance and support policies that enhance public education. NJEA is proud to represent you. We wish you a successful school year.

Evaluation Resources

DON'T MISS

Engage in a statewide action plan to connect critical elements supporting New Jersey public school educators and effective teaching. Attend a summit on Saturday, Sept. 27 at Forsgate Country Club in Monroe Township. Register online

Collective Bargaining Summit
A well-prepared collective bargaining team ensures the strength of the local association. That’s why local leaders, bargaining teams, and any other member involved in the bargaining process should make attending the NJEA Jim George Collective Bargaining Summit a priority. Learn more 

LGBTQ: What does it all mean for NJEA members & leaders? Please join the NJEA Sexual Orientation & Gender Identity Committee for a free bunch on Nov. 6, 2014 from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. at the NJEA Convention. Learn what NJEA resources are available to members and leaders for self-education, member education and advocacy for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning (LGBTQ) members and students. For questions, contact Yvonne Holmes at 609-599-4561 Ext. 2235. Sign in and register

TEACHER APPRECIATION DAY
Rutgers Athletics invites all NJEA members and their families to Teacher Appreciation Day on Saturday, Sept. 27. Participants will receive discounted tickets to the Rutgers vs. Tulane game. Learn more

Invite the Cat in the Hat to your school
The Cat in the Hat comes back…and he’s just in time to help your school celebrate NEA’s Read Across America!  NJEA members can now request a visit from the Cat himself right online. The deadline to invite the Cat is Nov. 14.

Read More

Smilemakers

CLASSROOM CLOSE-UP, NJ

Classroom Close-Up, NJ

NJEA’s television show is celebrating its 20th anniversary. Visit the website to learn more about the Emmy-winning, 30-minute weekly series that focuses on the great things happening in New Jersey's public school. Visit the video library to see thousands of stories that have aired over the past two decades.

Read More

MEMBER BENEFITS

NEA Complimentary Life Insurance
Did you know that all NJEA members have free life insurance through NEA? All you have to do is identify your beneficiary! You may also purchase additional life insurance through NEA.

NEA Cash Rewards Card

Member Benefits

MEMBER DISCOUNTS

Your NJEA membership card is your ticket to discounts on merchandise, insurance, entertainment, travel, and personal legal services.

ENTER WEB GIVEAWAY

SPOTLIGHT

Small local association plays big role
The Washington Education Association is a small, inclusive local in Warren County that had a vision to play a bigger part in its community and in the lives of its members. Under the leadership of WEA President Ann Kaspereen, NJEA UniServ field rep Kim Cowing, and NJEA UniServ consultant Jennifer Larsen, WEA formed the Positive Relationship Committee last June and put together a plan for the coming school year.

Read More

NJREA

Lifetime Achievement
Congratulations to NJREA's Minority-Concerns Rep Lorena Tyson. Tyson has been selected as the recipient of the Shirley Chisholm Lifetime Achievement Award. Read More

SCHOOL BUZZ

Study shows weak correlation between student test scores and teacher performance
Sometimes who pays for a study is as telling as the results of the study.The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation funded the research that generated the report, “Instructional Alignment as a Measure of Teaching Quality.” The researchers also used data from the Foundation’s Measures of Effective Teaching study to perform their work. Given the Gates Foundation’s support for using student test data to evaluate teachers, it’s interesting to note that this study concluded that how students perform on state assessments is only weakly connected to instructional content or quality.

Read More