NJ Governor Chris Christie blasts teachers at Trenton Boys & Girls Club (VIDEO)
By PAUL MICKLE
TRENTON — Gov. Chris Christie used the Boys & Girls Club in Trenton this evening to take a shot at the teachers feeling insulted by his refusal to attend their annual convention in Atlantic City this week.
Addressing 50 high schoolers and several local officials, Christie said any state money Trenton gets should be spent making the city safer for young people and that he wishes he had the money to fund all urban needs.
But governor used the Q & A session with students to criticize the New Jersey Education Association, the teachers’ union, as a key cause of the state’s financial woes as well as the woes of urban education in Jersey.
Christie cited the litany of frequent complaints about the teachers’ union, from their getting virtually every holiday off to their long summer vacations and the two days they get off every year, by contract, to attend the convention in AC.
“These teachers have all summer off. Can’t they have their convention during the summer?’’ the governor said as he spoke to a clutch of high schoolers surrounding him.
“They got to get two days off from school because, you know, they don’t get enough time off now, right? They get two weeks off at Christmas, they get all the different holidays, then they get all the summer off and now they need two more days.
“Why do you think that is? Do you think If they cared about learning where would they be today?’’
Ashley Batts, 16, a Trenton Central High School sophomore answered “in school.’’
“That’s right, in school, baby, they would not be down there in Atlantic City having a party — because that’s what it is.’’
Yesterday from the convention site, the NJEA issued a statement saying governors have always come to their convention and that he was insulting teachers by not showing this year.
Similarly, on Election night a state lawmaker speaking to teachers at a rally told Christie to “go to hell,’’ a comment he took back the next day.
But Christie responded in kind this evening, and in answer to a question about “bad teachers’’ from 18-year-old TCHS grad Tyere Hill urged to the students to “stand up for education, like me.’’
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