New Jersey's chief of schools says the state should be quicker to reconfigure or close failing institutions.

Acting Education Commissioner Christopher Cerf  tells The Associated Press that would be one of his top priorities if he had free rein to modify the state's education system.

Cerf says data show that New Jersey has one of the nation's top public school systems -- but that low-income students do relatively poorly. And he says the gap is bigger than in most states.

He says the New Jersey Education Association does not seem serious enough about addressing that gap. That's the state's main teachers union.

Cerf says the goal of the education system should be to give every student an equal opportunity "regardless of birth circumstances."



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