Linda Darling-Hammond’s recent lecture at the Education Law Center in Newark could not have come at a more appropriate time for concerned New Jersey educators. Except for heated debates between a newly elected governor and the New Jersey Education Association, the only notoriety that New Jersey has received lately has been Jersey Shore, a silly reality television show glorifying bar-hopping, fake tans and unruly hair poufs. Surely, New Jersey has more to offer than “GTL” (that would be gym, tan, laundry) and the popular show’s cast of mostly non-Jersey residents. Darling-Hammond’s lecture highlighted New Jersey’s progress as a national leader in education and her comments came against a backdrop of harsh economic reality that many in the audience clearly felt could have a deleterious effect on that progress in the form of imminent budget cuts.
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