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Newark Announces Plan For Overhaul Of School System

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Mayor Cory Booker discusses the school plan - Newark, NJ - Mar 19, 2012 (credit: Alex Silverman / WCBS 880)

Mayor Cory Booker discusses the school plan – Newark, NJ – Mar 19, 2012 (credit: Alex Silverman / WCBS 880)

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HARTFORD, CT (CBSNewYork) – Newark officials have unveiled the final details of a wide-ranging plan to overhaul the city’s struggling school district.

WCBS 880’s Alex SilvermanĀ On The Story

Superintendent Cami Anderson says she has made some changes to her original proposal after holding a series of public meetings.

Plans to close several schools and merge others were met with anger and confusion at a public meeting last month that Anderson held for Newark parents.

She was shouted off stage when she first announced her plans, called a liar and a coward by a crowd of a thousand.

“The offering at Rutgers was the beginning of a conversation and it was always intended as such,” she said Monday.

Monday’s meeting was filled with supporters of the proposed overhaul.

Her plan calls for closing some failing schools, opening new middle schools, and giving principals more control over their staffs.

Anderson says the plan she is pushing for Newark students is meantĀ to ensure every student graduates career and college ready.

“I feel a sense of relief,” said Mayor Cory Booker, who calls the city’s struggling schools a source of shame and agony. “A child being born right now today is depending upon us to liberate their potential, to end the scourge.”

The city’s public school system is the state’s largest, with 75 schools and a student population of about 40,000. It has been plagued for years by low test scores and poor graduation rates.

(TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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