The strange saga of the NJEA’s ouster of executive director Ed Richardson continues. After SPCNJ dug up the fact of Richardson’s removal and noted the NJEA’s strange silence on the matter, NJ Spotlight at least followed up with NJEA Communications Director Steve Baker. All Baker would say was that the NJEA would provide more details at a later date.
But Baker was still curiously silent as to why its ED is out, and apparently NJ Spotlight did not ask him. And why the cloak of silence surrounding the move? It’s as if the NJEA is trying to hide something.
First of all, doesn’t the NJEA owes its teachers an explanation? After all, teachers send $950 of their hard-earned salaries to the NJEA every year. Doesn’t the ED work for them?
In addition, if the NJEA were simply a private company, no one would care. But the 200,000-strong NJEA is the most powerful political force in the state. It takes in $129 million of property tax dollars every year. The SPCNJ estimates that the NJEA spends about $65 million per year on politics. For decades, the NJEA has dominated New Jersey’s political system. It even has the current governor acting as a TV spokesman for its agenda. The NJEA’s ED is the chief executive of the organization and drives its political activities. So New Jersey citizens should care about what’s going on because it will affect the state’s political system and ultimately their lives.
So: why the silent ouster of the executive director?
Read the full NJ Spotlight piece here.