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 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 Mar. 22, 2017

Coffee Break: Parent Advocate Muhammed Akil on Getting Honest About Our Weaknesses and Creating Real Change

Muhammed Akil is a fierce advocate for school choice and unflinching in his conviction that we must confront long-time failures…

By Laura Waters

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Posted May 22, 2018

I’m Celebrating First-Gens Because I Am One

We all know the journey to—and through—college isn’t easy. It can be especially difficult for first-generation students who are the first in their family to…

By Merone Hailemeskel

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Posted May 22, 2018

All This Integration Talk Is Distracting Us From Giving Black Families Better Schools

Last week the Journey for Justice Alliance released a report called “Failing Brown v. Board.” The report is a direct attack on public charter schools…

By Sharif El-Mekki

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Posted May 24, 2018

Y’all Can Have Betsy DeVos, I’m Checking for Stacy Abrams

Outrage: As Long As Betsy’s In Charge, Kids Should Just Stop Going to School Once again, Betsy DeVos demonstrated this week her dangerous ignorance of…

By Tanesha Peeples

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