NJEA: Murphy’s commitment to schools, justice benefits all

Gov. Phil Murphy delivered his 2023 State of the State address today, highlighting his administration’s efforts to increase equity and justice for all New Jersey residents. He emphasized his commitment to public education as a driver of economic success, noting that New Jersey’s public schools are the best in the nation.

NJEA’s officers, President Sean M. Spiller, Vice President Steve Beatty and Secretary-Treasurer Petal Robertson, issued this statement following the speech:

“We commend Gov. Murphy for publicly recognizing the vital role that New Jersey’s public schools play in the current and future success of our state. Throughout his first five years in office, he has been a consistent champion of public education as the key to broad economic prosperity. He has consistently demonstrated respect for the profession and a commitment to listening to educators when setting education policy. We look forward to working with him in the coming year to further strengthen our best-in-the-nation public schools and to address the current challenges that face students and educators alike.

“In particular, we are encouraged that he took action in the fall to create a task force to address the current staffing crisis in our schools. This is a problem that has been building for many years, and it requires immediate, sustained action to address it. We urge the governor and legislative leaders to listen to the experts on that task force and to use the coming months to implement the proposals they come up with. Those solutions will help our schools remain America’s best and ensure that our students have the support they need to learn and grow, developing the skills necessary to succeed in life and to lead our state in the future.

“We also commend Gov. Murphy’s ongoing commitment to justice for all New Jersey residents. From making communities safer against the scourge of gun violence to increasing the minimum wage, to standing up for women’s rights, the environment and voting rights, he has consistently demonstrated a belief that the well-being of every New Jersey resident matters. As leaders of a justice-centered union, we are proud to support a broadly justice-centered plan of action for the state where our members and students live, learn and work.”