New Jersey governor Chris Christie appeared on Oprah this afternoon, alongside Newark, NJ mayor Cory Booker and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, to announce an unusual but exciting partnership for education reform.
Trenton took over administration of Newark’s failing public schools in 1995, but the district has seen little improvement in the ensuing years. Christie (perhaps America’s most effective governor) sees in Booker (perhaps America’s most effective mayor) a capable, no-B.S. partner for reform — and a Democrat to boot. As per their announcement today, Christie will devolve some authority back to Booker and a superintendent that the two together will choose.
What’s Zuckerberg’s part? The Facebook billionaire will donate $100 million in capital.
This story is just beginning, but it has a lot going for it: Christie and Booker, education reform, local control, bipartisanship, private sector participation. It will be something to keep an eye on.