Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act: S-2392 (Buono, Allen, Weinberg) / A-3466 (Vaineri Huttle, Angelini, Diegnan, Handlin, Moriarty, McKeon, Lampitt, Jasey ). This legislation, which establishes measures to address harassment, intimidation and bullying in school settings, passed in the Assembly 73-1-5. The bill also passed in the Senate 30-0.
NJEA supports this bill; though the Association unsuccessfully sought amendments to make the bill more effective. Our recommendations included: a) proper funding for training and programs in each district and b) insuring that school personnel are properly trained and certified as bullying specialists. The bill now heads to the governor for his signature.
Model Contracts for Superintendents: A-406 (Diegnan, Cryan, Casagrande, Lampitt, Moriarty) passed the Assembly (78-0) and has been referred to the Senate Education Committee. This legislation, opposed by NJEA, would require that school districts use a model contract developed by the Commissioner of Education when employing a superintendent of schools.
As currently written, the legislation would limit the ability of school superintendents to negotiate the following aspects of employment: salary, health benefits, sick leave and restrictions on the use of vacation leave.
If signed into law, this bill could become the slippery slope for other school employees’ contracts.
Advertising on Exterior of School Buses: A-1637 (Wagner, Voss, Addiego, Rudder)/S-2309 (Gordon,Vitale) This legislation, which permits boards of education to contract for the sale of advertising space on the exterior of school buses, passed the Senate 28 - 2 and was sent to the Governor. The bill requires that 50% of any revenue generated by the sale must be used by the board to offset the fuel costs of providing pupil transportation services and the remaining 50% of the revenue will be used to support programs and services the board deems appropriate. Advertisements for tobacco or alcohol products or for political advocacy will be prohibited, in addition to any other advertisements that the Commissioner of Education deems inappropriate. The Assembly version of the bill, A-1637, had already passed with a unanimous vote. NJEA took no position on the legislation.