Education: State Takeover

Takeover New Jersey seizes control of a failing city school system

New Jersey made some unhappy educational history last week. With a go-ahead from an administrative-law judge, the state board of education voted unanimously to disband the local school board in Jersey City and oust all six top administrators. For the next five years, the district will be run by an all-powerful school czar named by the state. New Jersey thus became the first U.S. state to seize total control of a local school district because of educational rather than financial collapse. It may not be the last: five other states now have laws allowing takeovers.

Governor Thomas Kean, who last year...

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