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Newark Teacher's Union Fights $30 Million Grant

Thursday, October 03, 2013

WNYC

Newark schools are at risk of losing up to $30 million in federal money from the district's  Race to the Top grant.

The Newark Teacher’s Union supported the application last year but now Newark Schools Superintendent Cami Anderson says the union is the only one of the required groups that hasn't signed on.

“And if anything (the grant application) only improved as a result and in direct response to their and other feedback,” Anderson  said. “So it is our expectation that they, just like everyone else, would support it. In tough fiscal times that is a great deal of money.”

But NTU president Joe DelGrosso says he is not going to sign the application.

“Sometimes taking federal money is not the right thing,”  DelGrosso said.  “Of the $30 million, only a couple of million would find its way back to any schools.”

The Superintendent’s office says the federal grant requires the district work with non-profit organizations to, for example, help coordinate access to mental health services for students with social and emotional issues.

DelGrosso argues he wasn't given enough time to review the application, while the district argues the NTU president dodged several attempts to discuss Race to the Top.

The application is due at 4 pm today. 

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