Laura Waters

Blogger

Blogger, Parent, School Board Member

Lawrence Township, New Jersey

Laura Waters writes about New Jersey and New York education policy and politics. As the daughter of New York City educators and parent of a son with special needs, she writes frequently about the need to listen to families and ensure access to good public school options for all.

She is based in New Jersey, where she and her husband have raised four children. She recently finished serving 12 years on her local school board in Lawrence, New Jersey, where she was president for nine of those years. Early in her career, she taught writing to low-income students of color at SUNY Binghamton through an Educational Opportunity Program.

Laura blogs about education in New Jersey at NJ Left Behind and New York at New York School Talk.

RECENT POSTS

Posted May 31, 2018

My Sister’s Battle With Severe Mental Illness Taught Me Never to Stand for Pretense

My parents, Jerry and Emily, had three daughters. I’m the oldest, followed by Carla two years later, and then my…

By Laura Waters

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Posted Mar. 16, 2018

What Happens When Even the ‘Best’ Neighborhood School Treats Its Students With Disabilities Horribly?

The New York Post recently profiled Wesley Clark, a 9-year-old fourth-grader at PS 8 in Brooklyn Heights. The article describes a “supposedly progressive Brooklyn…

By Laura Waters

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Posted Mar. 8, 2018

Coffee Break: Why Mark Rynone Left Corporate to Help Kids With Special Needs

Mark Rynone considers his passion for education as an outgrowth of family values. After all, his mother, brother and a…

By Laura Waters

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Posted Dec. 12, 2017

New Jersey Skated by for Years on Misleading Graduation Rates, But Now It’s Closing the ‘Honesty Gap’

Does it seem odd to you that we’re celebrating the fact that half of New Jersey’s third-graders are at or…

By Laura Waters

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Posted Nov. 9, 2017

The Votes Are In: New Jersey’s Teachers Union Really Blew It

The leaders of New Jersey’s primary teachers union, the New Jersey Education Association (NJEA), have egg on their faces. In…

By Laura Waters

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Posted July 5, 2017

It’s Going to Be a Lot Harder to Shade Newark Public Schools With These Graduation Rates

It’s easy to be skeptical about improvements to Newark Public Schools (NPS), given its sordid history of corruption, desultory oversight,…

By Laura Waters

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Posted June 13, 2017

Jared’s Got Something Special and KIPP’s ‘Pathways’ Is Helping Him Show It

Eight-year-old Jared Teel-Drayton hops into the room, hands flapping, eyes darting, smile alight. He’s been painting—his class went to the…

By Laura Waters

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Posted June 2, 2017

The Woman Behind the Miracle on Cooper Street in Camden

Point A: A young girl born in Puerto Rico in 1962 spends her childhood traveling up and down the Eastern…

By Laura Waters

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Posted Mar. 24, 2017

Here Are Some ‘Choice’ Highlights From Eva’s Interview With Chalkbeat

This whole district public school vs. charter public school—I don’t think parents think of it that way. I think they…

By Laura Waters

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Posted Mar. 22, 2017

The Supreme Court Does the Right Thing for Students With Disabilities But Now Here Comes the Hard Part

Here’s Chief Justice John Roberts, issuing the Supreme Court’s unanimous opinion today in a case called Endrew F. v. Douglas…

By Laura Waters

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Posted June 21, 2018

After 14 Years of Teaching, I’m Packing Up Room 103 for the Last Time

It’s June. The classroom walls are bare. The grit outlined empty spaces left behind by charts, posters, reading lists and student work jut out starkly…

By Zachary Wright 

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Posted June 21, 2018

How New Mexico Is Becoming a Quiet Leader in the Education Reform Movement

While much of the education reform world was convening in Austin for the annual charter schools conference this week, I snuck off to Albuquerque for…

By Peter Cunningham

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Posted June 20, 2018

A Thank You to The Parents, Students and Teachers Who Dare to Demand Better From Our Public Schools

As we come to the end of another school year, I’ve been thinking a great deal about the teachers and parents who have dared to…

By Tracy Dell’Angela

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