Dr. Daniel Fishbein has agreed to accept the position of Superintendent of the

In Uncategorized on June 6, 2008 at 10:14 pm

Dr. Daniel Fishbein has agreed to accept the position of Superintendent of the
Ridgewood Public Schools, pending review of his contract by the Bergen County
Executive Superintendent and a vote of the full Ridgewood Board of Education.

Dr. Fishbein is currently the Superintendent of the Glen Ridge Public Schools.
In addition, he is a Ridgewood resident.

Debra Anderson
Public Information Officer
Ridgewood Public Schools


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  1. This is great news! Dr. Fishbein seems like a good fit. I know some people in Glen Ridge and they are devastated that he is leaving. He is highly regarded. I’m so glad we will finally have a real superintendent — and a Ridgewood parent, too! Let’s hope he comes in and does a little housecleaning at Cottage Place.

    There could be hope for us yet!

  2. Yes, this is all fine and dandy. However, what are we paying him and what kind of package is he getting above and beyond his salary?

  3. Congratulations and welcome, Dr. Fishbein. The Village schools are looking for leadership. I’m sure you are the one. How can I be sure? I really can’t say. I do know that we are tired, and have been for a long time, of the state of affairs of our highly fragmented system. We need unity. Lead on!

  4. Over/under until The Fly posts his first complaints about Dan Fishbein: 3 days

  5. I think Dan (Dr. Fishbein) is a perfect fit for this position. He understands what Ridgewood parents would like for their children’s education and he has 5 of his own in the system! He has lived in the community for several years. I wish him the best in this new endeavor.

  6. I am just thrilled that we have someone who has a personal stake in how the Ridgewood schools perform. Good Luck Dr. Fishbein!

  7. I am also thrilled to know that Ridgewood, after a couple of debaucles, has finally made an excellent choice for a Superintendent. I know Dan and his family personally. With 5 children in the RPS, he certainly has a stake in the future of education here. I wish him the very best and hope that the community gives him the support he needs to turn things around in our district.

    When will the announcement of the resignation of Jack Lorenz happen? I have heard from a very credible source that this is indeed true.

  8. Congratulations Dan Fishbein….You will be the best super we have known

  9. FYI… His current Glen Ridge Employment Contract:

    Click Here to see his contract on the Glen Ridge Schools website

    OR Just Read the Text Below:


    THIS EMPLOYMENT CONTRACT is made and entered into this _26th_ day of September, 2006, by and between the

    GLEN RIDGE BOARD OF EDUCATION, with offices located at 12 High Street, Glen Ridge, New Jersey (hereinafter, “the Board”)


    DANIEL FISHBEIN , , New Jersey, (hereinafter, “the Superintendent”).

    NOW THEREFORE, the Board and the Superintendent, for the consideration herein specified, agree as follows:

    1. TERM: The Board, in consideration of the promises herein contained of the Superintendent, hereby employs, and the Superintendent hereby accepts employment as the Superintendent of Schools for a term of five (5) years, commencing on July 1, 2006 and ending on June 30, 2011.


    A. Certification: The Superintendent shall hold a valid and appropriate certificate to act as Superintendent of Schools in the State of New Jersey.

    B. Duties: The Superintendent shall be the chief executive and administrative officer of the Board and shall have general supervision over all aspects, including the fiscal operations and instructional programs of the District, and shall arrange the administrative and supervisory staff including instruction and business affairs as best serves the District, in the judgment of the Superintendent. The selection, placement, transfer and dismissal of personnel, both instructional and non-instructional, shall occur only upon the recommendation of the Superintendent, subject to Board approval. The members of the Board, individually and collectively, will refer to the Superintendent any and all criticisms, complaints and suggestions concerning the operation and management of the district called to their attention. The Board will discuss and direct the Superintendent to study, recommend, and/or take action. The Superintendent shall have the right to contact the Board Attorney for legal assistance as the need arises in carrying out his duties.

    All duties assigned to the Superintendent by the Board of Education should be appropriate to and consistent with the professional role and responsibility of the Superintendent, and shall be set by Board policy and in the Job Description (attached hereto and incorporated herein by reference) which may be modified from time to time, consistent with the intent set forth above. In the event the duties of the Superintendent increase substantially during the term of this Employment Contract by, e.g., taking on the duties or title of another position, the Board shall increase his/her compensation commensurate with the increased duties and responsibilities.

    The parties agree that the Superintendent shall have the right to attend all Board meetings and committee meetings of the Board and the Superintendent, or the Superintendent’s delegate, has the right to make recommendations to the Board or committee with respect to any proposed action or policy. The parties also agree that the Board shall not hold any discussions regarding the Superintendent’s employment, unless the Superintendent is give written notice as least 48 hours in advance, is permitted to be present during such discussions, is given the opportunity to address the Board, and permitted to have a representative of his/her choosing speak on the Superintendent’s behalf. In addition, the Board shall not hold any discussions with regard to the Superintendent’s performance, or that may adversely affect the Superintendent’s employment, in public session, unless the Superintendent requests that such discussions are held in public session, pursuant to the Open Public Meetings Act.

    C. Outside Activities: The Superintendent shall devote time, attention and energy to the business of the District. However, upon written notice and with the prior approval of the Board, the Superintendent may serve as a consultant to other districts or educational agencies, lecture, engage in writing activities and speaking engagements, and engage in other activities at the discretion of the Superintendent. Activities which require the Superintendent to be absent from the District for more than one full working day shall require written notice to and prior approval of the Board.

    3. PROFESSIONAL GROWTH OF SUPERINTENDENT: The Board encourages the continuing professional growth of the Superintendent through participation as the Superintendent might decide, in light of the responsibilities as the Superintendent, in the following:

    A. The operations, programs and other activities conducted or sponsored by local, state and national school administrator and / or school board associations; and

    B. seminars and courses offered by public or private educational institutions;

    C. Informational meetings with other persons whose particular skills or backgrounds would serve to improve the capacity of the Superintendent to perform his professional responsibilities for the Board; and

    D. visits to other institutions; and

    E. Other activities, in addition to those items included in A through D above.

    The Board, upon notice and with prior written approval, shall permit a reasonable amount of release time for the Superintendent, as deemed appropriate, to attend such matters and shall pay all necessary travel, registration and sustenance expenses.


    A. Salary: For the period July 1, 2006 to June 30, 2007, the Board shall pay the Superintendent one hundred sixty-nine thousand eight dollars ($169,008) exclusive of longevity and advance degree amounts. This annual salary rate shall be paid to the Superintendent in accordance with the schedule of salary payments in effect for other certified administration employees.

    During the term of this Employment contract, including any extension thereof, the Superintendent shall not be reduced in compensation and / or benefits. In no event shall the Superintendent’s salary, leaves, medical and / or other insurance, and / or any other forms of compensation and benefits be less than that provided any other employee in the district and not decrease from current levels without consent of the Superintendent.

    Any adjustment in salary made during the life of this Employment contract shall be in the form of an amendment and shall become part of this Employment Contract, but it shall not be deemed that the Board and the Superintendent have entered into a new employment contract.

    5. BENEFITS:

    A. Vacation/Holidays: The Superintendent shall be granted twenty-seven (27) vacation days for each school year, all of which shall be available to the Superintendent on July 1st of each year. However, vacation days shall be earned at the rate of two and one-twelfth (2-1/12th) days per month. If the Superintendent shall leave or this contract is terminated in the middle of any contract year, an accounting of vacation days earned and used shall be completed and the appropriate debit or credit shall be made between the parties. The Superintendent shall be allowed to carryover up to five (5) vacation days into the next school year and receive payment for no more than ten (10) days at a rate of 1/240 per diem. The Superintendent must notify the Board, in writing, of his intent under this clause no later than June 15th. The Superintendent shall be permitted to take vacation days at any time, including, but not limited to, at the Superintendent’s option, upon retirement, resignation or contract non-renewal. The Board, through the business office, shall be responsible for maintaining written documentation of the Superintendent’s earned and accrued vacation days and shall complete the appropriate accounting for vacation days as set forth herein.

    The Superintendent shall be entitled to all holidays granted to any other twelve-month administrator in the District.

    B. The Superintendent shall receive a one-time $5,000.00 (five thousand dollar) retention bonus (less applicable state and federal tax deductions) payable no later than November 1, 2006. The bonus is in recognition of the Superintendent’s continued commitment to the development of innovative programs and various curricular initiatives; his efforts in meeting the goals and objectives of the District; his implementation of the vision statement of the Board of Education; and other measurable gains in the overall operation of the District.

    C. Personal Leave: The Superintendent shall be granted four (4) personal leave days annually to attend to personal matters, which require absence during school hours, to be used at his discretion. Unused personal days shall convert to accumulated sick leave at the end of each school.

    D. Medical and Other Benefits: The Superintendent shall receive medical, health, dental care, prescription, disability (two-thirds of annual salary) and vision care benefits as provided to members of the Glen Ridge Administrative and Supervisory Association in accordance with the agreement between the Board of Education of the Township of Glen Ridge and the Glen Ridge Administrative and Supervisory Association. The Superintendent shall be entitled to an annual reimbursement not to exceed $500 after submission to the Superintendent’s medical plan for a physical examination. Medical coverage can exceed, but not be less than original coverage.

    E. Sick Leave: “Sick Leave” is defined to mean the absence of any employee from his post of duty because of personal disability due to illness or injury, or because he has been excluded from school by the school District’s medical authorities on account of a contagious disease or being quarantined for such a disease in his immediate household. The Superintendent shall receive fifteen (15) sick days annually. The unused sick days earned in Glen Ridge are cumulative.

    F. Bereavement Leave: The Superintendent shall receive bereavement leave as provided to the members of the Glen Ridge Administrative and Supervisory Association in accordance with the agreement between the Board of Education of the Township of Glen Ridge and the Glen Ridge Administrative and Supervisory Association.

    G. Membership Fees: The Board shall pay one hundred percent (100%) of the Superintendent’s and/or the District’s curriculum leader’s membership fees and / or charges to the American Association of School Administrators, the New Jersey Association of School Administrators, National Center for Education Research and Technology, the National Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, the New Jersey Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, and the International Rotary.

    H. Reimbursable Expenses: The Board shall reimburse the Superintendent for expenses incurred for travel and sustenance within the District and travel within the County of Essex in the performance of the duties under this Employment Contract. The Superintendent shall be paid a $400.00 (four hundred dollar) allowance per month for travel expenses and sustenance within Essex County for the 2006-2007 school year. This amount shall increase by $50 incrementally commencing July 1st of each school year during the term of this contract.

    I. Business Items: The Board shall provide the Superintendent with or reimburse the Superintendent for the full use of a cellular telephone, electronic planner, personal computer, personal fax, yearly internet access, internet provider service and other business items upon written notice and with the prior approval of the Board.

    J. Other Benefits: The Superintendent shall be entitled to other benefits not listed herein but provided as part of the Glen Ridge Administrative and Supervisory Association agreement. At no time should the Superintendent’s benefits be less than those provided to the GRASA and the GREA.


    A. Vacation Days: Upon the Superintendent’s separation from employment with the District, the Board will pay all unused, accumulated vacations days as follows:

    1. If the Superintendent dies before his contract period is completed, payment for his unused vacation days shall be given to his estate.

    2. If the Superintendent resigns or retires during the contract year, he shall receive cash payment for all unused pro-rated vacation days.

    B. Sick Days:

    1. After ten (10) years of service as an Administrator in the Glen Ridge School District, the Board will compensate the Administrator who leaves the School District for one-half of his accumulated sick days according to the Administrator’s rates:

    Up to and including 50 days $125 per day

    51 and up to 100 days $135 per day

    101 and up to 150 days $145 per day

    2. The total amount of compensation shall not exceed $15,000.

    3. Upon death, the payment of the Administrator’s accumulated sick days shall be made to his estate.

    C. Payment to Estate: If the Superintendent dies before a contract year is completed, payment for unused, accumulated vacation and sick days in accordance with provision B above shall be made to the Superintendent’s estate.


    A. The Board agrees that it shall defend, hold harmless and indemnify the Superintendent from any and all demands, claims, suits, actions and legal proceedings brought against the Superintendent in his official capacity as agent or employee of the Board, provided the incident arose while the Superintendent was acting within the scope of his employment and, as such, liability coverage is within the authority of the Board to provide under State law. In the event, that the Superintendent is the subject of criminal proceedings brought against him in his official capacity as an agent or employee of the Board, the Board shall not be responsible to defend him or hold him harmless for the costs and expenses incurred in the defense of such criminal charges unless the final disposition of such charges are in favor of the Superintendent.

    B. If, in the good faith opinion of the Board, a conflict exists with regard to the defense of any claim between the legal position of the Superintendent and the legal position of the Board, the Superintendent may engage legal counsel of the Superintendent’s choice at a hourly fee not to exceed the hourly fee charged by counsel to the Board of Education at the time that such special counsel for the Superintendent is engaged. In the event that it shall be necessary to engage special counsel on behalf of the Superintendent, the Board shall be responsible for the reasonable costs of legal defense for the Superintendent as permitted by State law and at the hourly rate stipulated above.

    C. The Board will provide the Superintendent with professional liability insurance coverage under a policy covering the members of the Board of Education and the Superintendent for errors and omissions. The premium shall be paid by the Board.


    The Superintendent shall undergo a physical examination at least once in every year pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A:16-2 and N.J.S.A. 18A:16-3, the scope of which shall be determined under rules of the State Board of Education. Such examination shall be made by a physician or institution of the Superintendent’s choosing and the cost thereof, and of all laboratory test and fluoroscopic or x-ray procedures, shall be borne by the Board. The cost to the Board shall not exceed five hundred dollars ($500.00) per year after submission of the invoice for the physical examination to the Superintendent’s medical plan.


    The parties shall meet to establish the Board’s goals and objectives for the ensuing school year. Said goals and objectives shall be reduced to writing and be among the criteria by which the Superintendent is evaluated, as hereinafter provided. On or prior to June 1st of each succeeding school year, the parties will meet to establish the Board’s goals and objectives for the next succeeding school year, in the same manner, and with the same effect as heretofore described.


    The Board shall evaluate the performance of the Superintendent at least once a year. Each evaluation shall be in writing, a copy shall be provided to the Superintendent, and the Superintendent and the Board, or its designee, shall meet to discuss the findings. The evaluations shall be based upon the goals and objectives of the District, the responsibilities of the Superintendent as set forth in the job description for the position of the Superintendent (attached hereto and incorporated herein by reference), and such other criteria as the State Board of Education shall by regulation prescribe. The evaluation format shall be developed and approved by the Board and the Superintendent within sixty (60) days of the execution of this Employment Contract.

    On or before April 1st of each year of this Employment Contract, the Board, or its designee, and the Superintendent shall meet in closed executive session for the purpose of mutual evaluation of the performance of the Board and the Superintendent. The Board shall supply the Superintendent with a copy of its written evaluation of him, which shall include areas of commendations and recommendations, and which shall provide direction as to any areas of performance in need of improvement.

    In the event that the Board determines the performance of the Superintendent is unsatisfactory in any respect, it shall describe in writing and in reasonable detail the specific instances of unsatisfactory performance. The evaluation shall include recommendations as to the areas of improvement in all instances where the Board deems performance is unsatisfactory. The Superintendent shall have the right to respond in writing to the evaluation. This response shall become a permanent attachment to the Superintendent’s personnel file. On or before June 1st of each year of the Employment Contract, the Superintendent and the Board shall meet to review the evaluation format and to mutually determine the evaluation format to be used in the subsequent school year.

    The Superintendent shall have the right, upon request, to review the contents of his personnel file and to receive copies at Board expense of any documents contained therein. He shall be entitled to have a representative accompany him during such review. No material derogatory to the Superintendent’s conduct, service, character or personality shall be placed in his personnel file unless he has had an opportunity to review the material. The Superintendent shall acknowledge that he has had the opportunity to review such material by affixing his signature to the copy to be filed with the express understanding that such signature in no way indicates agreement with the contents thereof. The Superintendent shall also have the right to submit a written answer to such material.


    Any notice of renewal of this Employment Contract shall be provided by the Board to the Superintendent, as required by law. The Superintendent shall notify the Board, in writing, by January 1, 2009, in order to provide time for the Board to review the contract and determine if a renewal will be offered.

    The Superintendent shall be notified, in writing on or before March 31, 2009, as to whether the Superintendent’s contract will be renewed or will be terminated at the conclusion of this contract.

    12. TERMINATION OF EMPLOYMENT CONTRACT: This Employment contract may be terminated by:

    A. Mutual written agreement of the parties;

    B. Disability of the Superintendent: In the event of disability by illness or incapacity, after the Superintendent’s sick leave has been exhausted, compensation shall be reinstated after the Superintendent has returned to employment and undertaken the full discharge of his duties. If a question exists concerning the capacity of the Superintendent to return to his duties, the Board may require the Superintendent to submit to a medical examination, to be performed by a doctor licensed to practice medicine. The Board and the Superintendent shall mutually agree upon the physician who shall conduct the examination. The examination shall be done at the expense of the Board. The physician shall limit the report to those factors that prohibit the Superintendent from performing his duties.

    C. Unilateral termination by the Superintendent: The Superintendent may propose to terminate this Employment Contract upon sixty (60) days written notice to the Board.


    This Employment Contract embodies the entire agreement between the parties hereto and cannot be varied except by written agreement to the undersigned parties.


    If, during the term of this Employment Contract, it is found that a specific clause of the Employment Contract is illegal in Federal or State law, the remainder of this Employment Contract not affected by such a ruling shall remain in force.


    In the event of any conflict between the terms, conditions and provisions of this Employment Contract and the provisions of the Board’s policies, or any permissive state or federal law, then, unless otherwise prohibited by law, the terms of this Employment Contract shall take precedence over the contrary provisions of the Board’s policies or any such permissive law during the term of this Employment Contract.


    The Board acknowledges and agrees that disclosure of personnel information is governed by the Open Public Records Act, codified at N.J.S.A. 47:1A-1, et seg., Executive Order No. 11 (November 15, 1974), Executive Order No. 21 (July 8, 202). Executive Order No. 26 (August 13, 2002), and case law interpreting them. All information related to the Superintendent’s performance, evaluation or any discipline which the public is not otherwise entitled to access under law is deemed confidential and shall not be released to the public absent a written release by the Superintendent, or by lawful order of a court of competent jurisdiction, or pursuant to a rule of court of competent jurisdiction.


    Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A:17-20.4, the Superintendent retains all tenure rights accrued in any position which he previously held in the district. The Superintendent shall also continue to accrue seniority in all positions in which he achieved tenure in the District. The Superintendent shall have the right to assert all tenure and seniority rights in event the Board does not renew the Superintendent for any reason.

    WHEREAS, a duly authorized officer of the Board has approved the terms and conditions of this Employment Contract, and

    WHEREAS, the Superintendent has approved the terms and conditions of this Employment Contract, and

    WHEREAS, this Employment Contract has been approved by a recorded roll call majority vote of the full membership of the Board of Education of the Township of Glen Ridge at its meeting of __September 25, 2006______, and has been made a part of the minutes of that meeting.

    WHEREAS, any and all prior contracts of employment be and hereby are revoked and rescinded.

    IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the parties set their hands and seals to this Employment Contract effective on the day and year first above written.

    ______________________________ ________________________________

    Witness: Daniel Fishbein, Ed.D., Superintendent

    Glen Ridge Board of Education Glen Ridge Board of Education

    ________________________ ________________________________

    Peter Caprio, Board Secretary Elisabeth Ginsburg, Board President

  10. Now that Daniel Fishbein will be the new Superintendent in Ridgewood, let’s take a look at the Math Curriculum that he presided over in Glen Ridge.

    It’s Everyday Math Pre-K through 6th Grade, Holt Grades 7th through 8th and mixed based on specific course in High School (with a continuation of Holt included).

    Click Here to Link to Glen Ridge Schools – Superintendent Page

    Click Here to Link to Glen Ridge District Math Curriculum Link List

    The only thing listed under “Teacher Curriculum Resources” is the activist ASCD website.
    Click Here to Link to the ASCD website
    (more details on this below)

    Click Here to Link to Glen Ridge District main web page



    Pre-K – 2 Math – Everyday Mathematics

    Excerpts from the Pre-K – 2 Elementary Schools’ Curriculum Websites

    The University of Chicago School Mathematics Project, whose mission is to improve mathematics education in the United States, developed Everyday Mathematics for use in grades kindergarten through second.

    …Everyday Mathematics does not teach topics or strands in isolation. Concepts are interwoven over time and in a variety of applications.

    Click Here to Link to Linden Ave Elementary (Pre-K – 2) School Math Curriculum

    Click Here to Link to Forest Ave Elementary (Pre-K – 2) School Math Curriculum


    3-5 Math – Everyday Mathematics
    6th Grade Math – the Holt Mathematics program. The curriculum has been recently reviewed and rewritten.

    Excerpts from the Ridgewood Avenue School’s (Grades 3-6) Curriculum Website

    “Everyday Mathematics” from the University of Chicago is the Math program in our school for grades 3 – 5. The Math Committee reviewed the curriculum last year, wrote new curriculum over the summer and is currently in the process of choosing teaching materials to implement the new curriculum. It provides students with a spiraled, hands-on approach to learning the development of mathematical concepts and problem solving skills. Aside from the “Everyday Mathematics” program, the students enhance computational mathematical communication through written, oral, symbolic and visual forms of expression through the use of math journals, activities and problem solving experiences.

    In sixth grade we utilize the Holt Mathematics program. The curriculum has been recently reviewed and rewritten. The program offers students a variety of comprehensive differentiated instruction opportunities as well as providing students with lessons that engage and apply practical skills. Each lesson provides spiral review to keep previously taught material fresh.

    Click Here to Link to Ridgewood Ave Elementary (3-6) School Curriculum Synopsis


    7-8 Grade Math – the Holt Mathematics program

    Text Books Used:

    Math 7: Holt Mathematics – Course 2
    2007 edition
    ISBN: 30385121

    Pre-Algebra: Holt PreAlgebra
    2008 edition
    ISBN 30943680

    Click Here to Link to Glen Ridge Middle School Grade 7 (housed in the High School) Text Book List

    Math 8: Holt Mathematics – Course 3
    2007 edition
    ISBN 30385423

    Algebra: Algebra I-NJ Edition
    2007 edition
    ISBN 30358272

    Click Here to Link to Glen Ridge Middle School Grade 8 (housed in the High School) Text Book List


    High School Math – Mixed – See Text Book List for specifics

    Click Here to Link to Glen Ridge High School Text Book List


    Also of interest is the Glen Ridge Teacher Curriculum Resources:

    Click Here to Link to Glen Ridge Teacher Curriculum Resources

    The only thing listed under “Teacher Curriculum Resources” is the activist ASCD website.
    Click Here to Link to the ASCD website

    You might want to check out The ASCD’s:
    Emerging Leaders Program (Click Here)
    The Emerging Leaders Program is designed to:
    “…prepare cohorts of diverse educators to fulfill ASCD leadership opportunities and influence education policy and practices.”
    “…prepare younger, diverse educators for potential influence and ASCD leadership.”
    (“ASCD is committed to engaging a diverse community and building capacity to improve learning, teaching, and leadership. In its quest to build capacity, the Association has designed the Emerging Leaders Program to prepare younger, diverse educators for potential influence and ASCD leadership.”)

    And Their:
    Legislative Agenda (Click Here)

  11. With “spiraling” now totally discredited by the Math Panel can Fishbein sell this old concept here and force Everyday math on every child in elementary school?

  12. Traditional math is an “old concept”, too — so the age of the idea has nothing to do with its validity.

    Everyday Math has worked well in Ridge School for the last 15 years, and it seems to have worked well in Glen Ridge. That might be the right kind of blended approach that the Presidential panel recommends.

  13. 9:39 AM,

    Good to see you’re one to settle for second best by cheer leading for Everyday Math.

    What do you really know about E’day Math vs. Singapore or Saxon?

    Or are you just flacking for the BOE?

  14. What do you really know about E’day Math vs. Singapore or Saxon?

    Does Everyday Math have proven success in Ridgewood? Yes.

    Does Singapore Math have proven success in Ridgewood? No.

    Call me crazy, but I prefer going with things that is proven to work.

  15. 9:39 – The important concept to grasp in 8:32’s comment is the that concept is discredited, not old. Traditional math may be old but it is not discredited.

  16. One could argue that purely “traditional” math was discredited in the “Nation At Risk” report of 1983 and the TIMSS of 1995, 99, etc.

  17. 11:07 – Everyday math should be called ‘Everyday Arithmetic.’ Those that waste their time with it won’t progress beyond arithmetic without great difficulty.

    Everyday Math is for you: The everyday person that doesn’t understand mathematics and never will.

    Everyday Math is the antithesis of the findings of the National Mathematics Advisory Panel. EM doesn’t encourage mastery. It spirals instead. EM doesn’t encourage computational fluency. It teaches slow, inefficient strategies instead. No wonder teachers can’t resist the urge to supplement with computational practice.

    What is your definition of success? The-bar-couldn’t-be-lower NJASK standardized tests?

    Is this what you want for Ridgewood?

    Is this what you want for Ridgewood?It is the antithesis of the findings of the National Mathematics Advisory Panel.

    What is your definition of success? The-bar-couldn’t-be-lower NJASK standardized tests?

  18. 11:43 – Once again you’re trying to make the math activists in this town look like extremists. Nobody is arguing for purely traditional math. We’re arguing for math curricula that meets what’s called for by the National Math Panel. Singapore seems to be the best fit.

    Every Math represents the most extreme excesses of reform math. I guess you’re the extremist.

  19. 11:07 – Ridgewood must be a unique place, because Everyday Math has been shown to be a failure in so many other places. I suppose that means Singapore math won’t work here, even though it delivers the world’s highest achievement scores. Hmm, are we so unique?

  20. folks if you cant add you can not even work at mac donalds …I can remeber a time when ridgewood parents were abit more ambitious for their kids..

  21. but we beat newark !

  22. if you cant add you can not even work at mac donalds

    Are you insinuating that Ridge graduates over the last 15 years can’t add???

    That would be news to their parents & the GW math teachers.

  23. I thought this thread was News about our New Superintendent… not just the “Math Syndrone” discussion. His priority will be to “run the Village School”.. He has a lot work ahead to do. Stop putting obstacles in path so soon. They will come soon enough from the less informed that post long junk links to bog down this Blog. Write your own paper or contribute short versions of something worth while… please.

  24. 11:07am

    Perhaps Everyday Math worked at Ridge and Somerville because teachers supplemented with traditional Addison Wesley Traditional Math, or parents sent their kids to Score or Kumon, or Dr. Brown had students come in at 8:00am for the real math instruction using Continential Math League.

    So, unless Ridge and Somerville used only the Everyday Math program and didn’t allow any supplementation, there are too many other variables to say IT WORKED.

    My guess is that any math program, including TERC, will work in a town like Ridgewood where parents have the money to pay for tutors.

  25. 559 untill the schools strat to teach math and history they are doomed and our kids are dommed the system is an over priced failure !!!

  26. What you may have missed 11:43 AM was that “A Nation at Risk” largely condemned our failure to educate our students properly. Rather than raising the bar on our teachers, we lowered the bar on our students and on our assessments. We now show many students “making the grade” who are still failing at international levels. It is a failed system that responds thusly to challenges to improve. We need school choice in order to escape these types of decisions by public monopoly educators. Such decisions will fade away as students leave them behind for successful education programs in private schools.

  27. 5:59 pm…

    They will come soon enough from the less informed that post long junk links to bog down this Blog. Write your own paper or contribute short versions of something worth while

    Ahhhh… the defense of the lazy and easily distracted…

    Try doing some reading and research once in a while… you might actually learn something and have something worthwhile to contribute to the conversation.

    You don’t “become more informed” just by listening to sound bytes and repeating them.
    It required a little mental effort.

    But in the future I’ll try to put up some dumbed-down short and simple posts so that you might be able to keep up with the rest of us.

  28. 2:31 AM,

    Thank you for researching and posting the info re: Glen Ridge and the math program (Everyday Math) they use in elementary school.

    So it seems that our incoming superintendent, Ridgewood resident, Mr. Daniel Fishbein, is all for constructivist math. otherwise why have it in his schools.

    One wonders how open minded he will be to elevating our math programs to the more rigorous and balanced curriculum offered by Singapore or Saxon Math.

    Or is he wedded to the old ways of dumbing down our education system to make our children feel better about themselves?

  29. 9:12am

    I would suggest everyone keep an open mind. Everyday Math has been a trendy program in the schools for the last 10-15 years. However, the trend may be swinging back to updated traditional programs. You can’t blame an educator for buying Everyday Math since it sold by Pearson as was the latest and greatest thing in Math education ever. It became an accepted standard even in very posh private schools, such as Montclair Kimberly.

    Now the posh schools, such as Dwight Englewood, are using updated Houghton-Mifflin.

    Let’s all give Mr. Fishbein a chance…he might surprise us.

  30. 8:29

    Wow! Aren’t you the smartest guy in the room. I once had a college professor (ya know, I think he had his doctorate) who had written numerous books (long ones and short ones) in a long and highly honored teaching career. He always implored his students to use the K.I.S.S. rule. Keep It Simple Stupid. It’s not a question of “dumbing down.” It’s a question of being efficient and economic with the language.

    That’s what the person you attacked was pleading for, and what you are absolutley incapable of providing. In the vernacular: You’re a windbag!

  31. 10:11 — I second that!

  32. I agree with 9:35. The reform math trend is dying. Now Ridgewood just has to realize that. Hopefully Fishbein will be the forward thinker Ridgewood needs.

    Time was that Ridgewood had forward thinkers as leaders, but it’s been a while.

    Perhaps we’re now finally getting back on track. If Fishbein is any kind of visionary, he’ll take seriously the fact that California has retooled their math standards and now there’s a California edition of Singapore Math.

  33. Back to the new superintendent – as a resident I hope he is a strong leader and will see what is really going on with the administration and why Ridgewood is going downhill. B Bulger is leaving but that leaves Botsford and DeSimone – maybe someone will finally make them accountable. What exactly do they do except spend money and collect high salaries?

  34. Some Ridgewood elementary schools have done very well with Everyday Math combined with some traditional. Some will argue that they could have done better; it is also true that they could have done worse. Before we say that the sky is falling we should look at some OBJECTIVE benchmarks, not just someone’s gut feel.

    Maybe it is the implementation of the math programs that makes them fail. The elementary schools have different principals and teachers.

    Maybe we should look more closely at out successful implementations. We can learn from our successes and failures.

  35. http://www.baristanet.com/2008/06/glen_ridge_superintendent_of_s.php

    June 6, 2008
    Dear Glen Ridge Community, Glen Ridge Faculty, Staff and Administration:

    It is with great regret that I inform you that I will be leaving as Superintendent of the Glen Ridge Public Schools. I have been employed by the Glen Ridge Board of Education since

    May 16, 1994 and I have loved every minute. I have enjoyed working with the people of this community to help raise their children and make their children’s educational experience one of excellence. We have accomplished great things together and I feel very satisfied with what I have been able to contribute.

    It is now time for me to go home and assist my home district of Ridgewood as their Superintendent of Schools. In my years here in Glen Ridge, I have been fortunate to work with excellent Boards of Education who have been very generous with their support and resources; excellent administrators who are not only true professionals but also compassionate and focused leaders; a faculty and staff who are great educators and great people; and, finally, a community that is generous and committed to its schools. The Borough Government, The Glen Ridge Educational Foundation, The Home and School Associations, GRAA, Rotary and all the parent and civic organizations are extremely supportive with their time, resources and commitment to the Borough’s children. I will dearly miss this abundance of support and can only hope it can be replicated in my new district.

    Thank you for everything you have done for me, my family and my career. I have spent almost a third of my life in Glen Ridge… I will always be a Ridger.

    Sincerely yours,

    Daniel Fishbein, Ed.D.
    Superintendent of Schools

  36. Ok 12:24 PM,

    Let’s look at the successful and the failing. Travell – failing using TERC. Orchard – successful using TERC. Ridge – successful using Everyday Math.

    Two of the three supplement the math programs with traditional math.

    However, this success does not translate into success when compared to other countries using an international standard.

    Good is relative. And in our global economy, we are just average in math.

    Being average will not sustain our standard of living for very many more years to come.

    Then what, will we become the calling center hub for people from India and China seeking advice about this or that product/problem/account etc…?

  37. Hey, is any one buying into Charles Reilly’s letter to The Ridgewood News touting the wonders of constructivist math based on the genius of Albert Einstein?

    Personally, I found it laughable. Einstein was a far cry from your average kid. It sounds good on the face of it but to use Einstein as an example stretches credibility.

    But then again, Charlie is the master of stretching the credibility of an argument to its limit of plausibility.

    Charlie, one wonders, with children no longer attending RPS, why education is so important to you?

    Why don’t you run again for the BOE? This way you can flack and spin for them from a legitimate platform.

    Otherwise you look like a gadfly, grasping for the past, hoping to be relevant to the conversation.

  38. 12:24 – You are correct. Let’s keep experimenting with the lives of our children until we get it right. At least we have been experimenting with only some of the schools.

  39. The only things good about Charlie’s letter is that it is too long and not relevant so know one will read it.

  40. 3:27 PM

    Relax, no lives are in danger.

    Wallow in failure or learn the secrets of success. My kid is doing great, and not just in math. The principal/teachers are key to a successful academic program.

    Don’t blame the board of ed if your teacher can’t teach. Actually, maybe you should take a good look at the teachers and administrators in your school. They are in the class with your kids all week. I have been very lucky and my children have had some great teachers in elementary school. The HS is another story.

  41. 3:08 – Charlie thinks he would have been an Einstein if just had the chance of being taught TERC math.

  42. whats happened to this town when did we get such a low opion of orselfs and our childern to think that not knowing how to add is OK? you must be joking

  43. yes lets hear it the ridgewood parents pats you selfs on the back because even though you kids cant add and will never get a fast food job you can still say you math program was inspired by agh make me puke!

  44. 10:11 –

    I see you’ve trotted out the “college professor/doctorate” friend again…
    Oh, and keep talking in sound bytes and acronyms.

    But whatever you do, please DO NOT add anything of value or substance to the conversation.

    Your role is to post vapid comments, parrot the sound bytes of others and squawk whenever the conversation gets into any substance because you are either too lazy to do the research or too intellectually challenged to process the information.

    One day, you may find out that you will have to actually do some of your own thinking. Until you are ready to do that, you may want to sit in the corner and play with the shiny bits of metal until the grown-ups are done talking.

  45. 7:36 PM –

    Regarding: “The HS is another story.”

    I have some advice for you about how to have your child succeed in RHS…

    “Relax, no lives are in danger.
    Wallow in failure or learn the secrets of success. The principal/teachers are key to a successful academic program.
    Don’t blame the board of ed if your teacher can’t teach. Actually, maybe you should take a good look at the teachers and administrators in the High School. They are in the class with your kids all week.”

    What’s the matter… your system is failing you?

    Of course quality teachers and administrators are important (as well as involved and committed parents), but you also need a good solid program, and EM is not good enough.

  46. 1:22

    The fact that you wrote your response at 1:22 AM gives me an indication of what kind of joyless life you lead. Probably have the laptop right there in the sack with you–and that’s the only thing that generates any heat in the room. Your satifaction comes from stringing a series of multi-syllabic words together and then hoping someboody–anybody–gives a damn about what you think. Here’s a news flash–You need new material and a new approach. You’re mean-spirited and stale, but most important, you’re not very persuasive.

  47. 9:00 AM –

    Glad to see you are taking my advice to not add anything of value or substance to the conversation.

    Your job is to stick to being a mindless reflector of pop culture sound bytes… and when these shallow comments fail you, devolve to name calling and character attacks.

    Keep it up. You play the fool so well. I find it very entertaining.

  48. I think that the successful schools are blending Traditional and EM. The teachers know what works for their different students. In my school the teacher takes the time to work with each child. She knows where the student is having problems and works with her/him. The teacher does not stand in the front of the room and teach “one size fits all” math.

    Success is in the numbers. The only objective measure that I can use for all schools is NJASK. There are some schools in Ridgewood that are doing very well on this test.

    For those who don’t like NJASK, what other objective standard is available? Don’t evaluate programs on your gut feel.

  49. Thanks for posting the information about the new superintendent! Welcome and looking forward to a good year. That was great that you were able to find all of Glen Ridge’s curriculum to post, where’s ours?

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