NJ’s ‘sexiest teacher’ on Christie’s fairness formula: A school should never close
Union High School teacher Nicholas Ferroni — fresh off of coming in at No. 1 on ABC TV's “The People's List” — weighed in on Gov. Christie's controversial plan to lower property taxes by introducing a proposal that would give all students the same $6,599 in state aid regardless of where they live.
It's a massive change from the current system, which gives far more aid to New Jersey's poorest districts. I suppose under Chris Christie's "fairness formula," poor and at-risk students will have to give their books and pencils to affluent students, because our governor doesn't feel that they deserve them or need them.
Ferroni, named People Magazine's "Sexiest Teacher Alive," said “Chris Christie's 'fairness formula' for NJ schools is taking from the poor and giving to the rich — which makes Christie the "anti-Robin Hood."
Christie's plan will give 75 percent of the school districts an increase in state aid, and lower their property taxes. But the others — the poorest districts — would see massive decreases.
Christie himself says some schools might close — and that some should, because they can be managed more efficiently, like charter schools in urban communities:
“I understand the idea of lowering property tax but you don't cut 70 percent of the funding from poor schools and give it to schools that don't need it in the affluent districts” Ferroni told me.
In Union, where Ferroni teaches, students would get an additional $2,217.92 in state aid above the existing $4,282.08, which is a 52 percent increase.
“It would benefit me,” says Ferroni, "but crush my colleagues in struggling schools.”
The history teacher adds “thank you, Chris Christie, for helping my students understand how the whole 'separate but equal' doctrine worked in the South by implementing your new 'fairness formula.'"
How do you feel about Governor Christie's plan to overhaul student aid in New Jersey?