(2010-09-23) Zuckerberg Grant100m Newark Schools

Mark Zuckerberg, chief executive and a founder of FaceBook, has agreed to donate $100 million to improve the long-troubled Public Schools in Newark Nj, and Gov. Chris Christie will cede some control of the state-run system to Mayor Cory Booker in conjunction with the huge gift, officials said Wednesday... Less than a month ago, the governor informed the city’s schools superintendent, Clifford Janey, that he would not be rehired, and that the state was looking for a successor. There has been speculation in Trenton about the possibility of hiring Michelle Rhee, the hard-charging schools chief in Washington, whose political patron, Mayor Adrian Fenty, recently lost his bid for re-election. Officials said Mr. Christie planned to announce that he and Mr. Booker would jointly select a new superintendent, a decision the governor has the power to make on his own. And they said he would instruct the mayor to come up with a reform plan for the system: in effect, asking Mr. Booker to redesign it.

Funny timing with the FaceBook movie coming out, eh?

Jan'2011 - Anya Kamenetz thinks there are better ways to generate School Reform with that much money. Our continued prosperity in a PostIndustrial economy depends on Creativity and Innovation. And that's why Zuckerberg's decision to follow the popular script disappoints me. I wish he had taken his $100 million, and some of his smartest people, and designed a new framework for education from the ground up, much the way he built Facebook from a dorm-room idea to a global brand. Is it possible to craft an education platform that's as participatory, offers as much opportunity for self-expression, and is as magnetic to young people as Facebook itself? That would be a theory of change worth testing.

Jan'2013: Newark was forced to release emails that negotiated the "deal".

May'2014: Throwing money at a centralized system tends not to get the effect you expect. "This is is the post-Booker era."

Mar'2015: On Wednesday, city, county and state officials, along with clergy and civil rights leaders, met in Washington with senior Obama administration officials, arguing that the schools plan has thrown their city into chaos. The U.S. Department of Education is investigating seven separate complaints of civil rights violations stemming from Christie’s plan.


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