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Gov. Phil Murphy announced that New Jersey is opening vaccine access to preK-12 educators as of March 15. 

Good news! You spoke and New Jersey listened. In recent weeks, nearly 10,000 NJEA members emailed Gov. Phil Murphy and Acting Commissioner of Education Angelica Allen-McMillan to explain why standardized testing would be harmful and pointless this spring.

Today, Gov. Murphy announced that the state will submit a standardized testing waiver request to the US Department of Education. Not only that, but Gov. Murphy pledged that $1.2 billion in new federal funding will be directed to New Jersey districts to meet the social, emotional and educational needs of our students as we work to emerge from this global pandemic.

It’s an outcome that shows what happens when we come together to demand change. As a union we are as strong as our members. Today, we showed how strong we are.

But the work isn’t done. While we continue to work with the administration to prioritize educators for vaccine access, we all still need to keep up the pressure. More than 12,000 NJEA members have already written to Gov. Murphy to make the case for treating us as the essential workers we are.

Please take a few minutes right now to email Gov. Murphy and ask him to make our schools safer by prioritizing educators for vaccine access.

Our advocacy matters. When we work together, we accomplish great things for our students, our colleagues and our profession. Thank you for all you have already done, and all you are going to do to help keep our schools the best in America.

In solidarity,

Marie Blistan, President
New Jersey Education Association

Sean M. Spiller, Vice President
New Jersey Education Association

Steve Beatty, Secretary-Treasurer
New Jersey Education Association

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The Murphy Administration needs to hear from you!

The Murphy Administration needs to hear from you!

The New Jersey Department of Education is planning to move forward with high stakes standardized testing this spring, even as other states are asking the federal government for a waiver to skip such testing during a pandemic.
PLEASE CLICK HERE to ask the Murphy Administration to request a waiver from the federal government so that our children can focus on learning rather than high stakes standardized testing!

Superintendents, principals and teachers across New Jersey have spoken out against standardized testing this spring, pointing out that it is not necessary because “districts already collect considerable data on students that can be used to pinpoint needs in the face of the pandemic and the loss of instruction time, be it remote or in-person.”
Administering the tests would also be a logistical nightmare as so many New Jersey students are learning remotely. In a preview of those challenges, many students who took AP exams remotely last spring were unable to submit their answers, had problems logging into the testing platform, and experienced issues with Internet connectivity.
Many more students would be taking this spring’s NJSLA tests (formerly known as PARCC) than took AP exams. The NJSLA is also a much longer test than the 45-minute AP exams. Students taking NJSLA would be younger as the tests start in 3rd grade versus high school. Finally, students taking the NJSLA would be less likely to have access to functioning computers and agood internet connection, exacerbating economic inequities in test results.

There also is no clear path for how to proctor remote administration of the NJSLA. Researchers have identified many problems with the technology used to proctor remote exams, including invasion of privacy and questions of data confidentiality and racial bias built into some monitoring software.

New Jersey students of all ages have had their learning significantly disrupted by the pandemic and are experiencing unprecedented levels of economic and health anxiety and stress. Administering a statewide standardized assessment under the current circumstances will not produce valid or useful information and will only further reduce the already limited time available for effective teaching and learning.

PLEASE CLICK HERE to ask the Murphy Administration to join New York, Michigan, Maine, Georgia and Montana in requesting a waiver from the federal government so that this spring, our children can focus on learning rather than high stakes standardized testing!