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Author Topic: The NJ State Department of Education should be blown up!!
Zorro
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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Okay, background (sorry, it's long): I am a sign language interpreter in the schools in NJ. Up until this point, NJ has had zero requirements to become an interpreter- you could go to an interview, tell the person interviewing you that you can sign, and get a job interpreting for a child in a school, without anyone ever actually observing you sign at all. Clearly, this is bad, because really, how do people know you actually can interpret?

Now, there are requirements. To work in the schools starting with this past school year, we had to pass a performance assessment, which I did. I then paid the $75 for an emergency educational interpreter certification [Mad] ; it's an emergency one because I haven't yet fullfilled the other requirements. There are 15 credits' worth of educational coursework that we also have to take. Once that's done, then we get the permanent certification. (I, however, am lucky, because I also have an undergraduate degree as a teacher of the deaf, and therefore got some courses waived- I only need to take two.)

So, I finally got my emergency certification for the 2005-2006 school year the first week in June, as in, three weeks ago! They mailed it out in mid- May . I only got it in June because it went to my mother's house, the house I have not lived in since June of 1994!!! Not only that, it was in my maiden name! I got married in 2001!! Clearly, me being sort of bright and all, on all the applications, etc., that we filled out last summer, I put down the address I have lived at since December 2000 and the name I have used since March of 2001.

So, I called the State Department of Education today. I was on the phone for forty-five minutes before I got a live person. I had the computer voice mail system hang up on me five times in that period. I finally got the live body at the state, and he asked me if I held any other certifications in NJ. Yes, I have a teacher of the deaf certification, which I have not used since I stopped teaching in 2000. It's in my maiden name, and I had applied for that one from my mother's address. "That's why both those things happened," he said. "Your Social security number gets entered intot he system when you apply for any more licenses, like this current one, and whatever name and address pops up, that's where it goes."

[flame]

"So," I said. "I may as well not have even bothered to write my name or address on all that paperwork last summer, because you people don't even read it, anyway???"

"Well, how are we supposed to know you moved or got married unless you tell us?" he asked.

"How was I supposed to know that because your computers have a certification I no longer use in your system that I even had to tell you? I mean, I filled out my current forms with all my current information!!"

Argh!! So, it gets better. This idiot at the state tells me the website address to go to to download the change of address and name form. I go and do that. Now, bear in mind, the 2005-2006 school year is over. I don't want this certification to be reprinted, nor do I want my teacher of the deaf one reprinted, since I do not teach anymore; I want all future ones to show the right information. That is not an option on this form, though; I have to pay forty dollars to have it reprinted!!! [flame] This on top of the $75 last summer for the initial application fee and fifty more dollars this summer for the 2006-2007 emergency application.

God, I hate the state department of education. If God smited Trenton with a huge lightning bolt right now, I would laugh my head off.

If you've actually read through this whole thing, I thank you and congratulate you for your patience!!

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"Seize the day! Make your lives extraordinary!"
-John Keating, "Dead Poets Society"

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MissEltoe
We Wish You a Merry Giftmas


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Oh, the state of NJ....

::shakes head sadly::

I work for them, and I feel for you.

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Licorice of the Lord! This is classy stuff...Should I be wearing a tie? Or, at least, pants?
~I'mNotDedalus

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Zorro
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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You don't work for the DOE, do you?

--------------------
"Seize the day! Make your lives extraordinary!"
-John Keating, "Dead Poets Society"

Posts: 2861 | From: New Jersey | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Richl
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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Ahhh, good ole' Dirty Jersey. Left there, 9 monthes ago for the desert, should have moved years ago.
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Zorro
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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I've lived my entire life in NJ, and have never been so angry at anything associated with this state as I am right now.

--------------------
"Seize the day! Make your lives extraordinary!"
-John Keating, "Dead Poets Society"

Posts: 2861 | From: New Jersey | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
DougW
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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quote:
Originally posted by Zorro:
I've lived my entire life in NJ...

Not yet.

Seriously, I don't think New Jersey is much different than anywhere else. This crap exists in every state in the union, and probably every country on the planet. I feel for you.

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Ramblin' Dave, quietly making noise
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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This sounds a bit like my current situation. I've been offered an internship at a US consulate in Switzerland, but I need a security clearance before I can start. The clearance was supposed to be granted at the end of May. A month later, I'm still waiting. Even though I had clearances from two different agencies as recently as three years ago. There's only one thing holding up the process, but no one will tell me what the holdup is. It's against policy.
Bureaucracy sucks. Hope the rant made you feel better!

--------------------
Another lifetime I'd have fallen in love with you
Swept away by my feelings, ashamed and confused
But just now it's enough to be walking with you
Let the mystery play as it will! -Lui Collins

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Zorro
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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Amazingly enough, it did, actually. Who knew Snopes was so therapeutic? [Wink]

--------------------
"Seize the day! Make your lives extraordinary!"
-John Keating, "Dead Poets Society"

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Sara at home
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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Do you realize that if you were a high school student you could be suspended or expelled for making that comment about your school, let alone the entire NJDOE?

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Assume that all my posts will be edited at least once. Dyslexic -- can't spell, can't type, can't proofread.

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Ganzfeld
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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Perhaps a Petition for Natural Disaster from P Robertson is in order? Only that costs money too... decisions decisions.
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Zorro
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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Sara- I know. It's quite sad, really.

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"Seize the day! Make your lives extraordinary!"
-John Keating, "Dead Poets Society"

Posts: 2861 | From: New Jersey | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
Lainie
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by Sara at home:
Do you realize that if you were a high school student you could be suspended or expelled for making that comment about your school, let alone the entire NJDOE?

At my daughter's former school, kids can be suspended for using a profanity. [Roll Eyes]

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How homophobic do you have to be to have penguin gaydar? - Lewis Black

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Sandman
Deck the Malls


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Hey careful there!

I hear the Feds are arresting people who just TALK about blowing up buildings, now...

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"I will tell you in another life, when we are both cats."

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MissEltoe
We Wish You a Merry Giftmas


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quote:
Originally posted by Zorro:
You don't work for the DOE, do you?

NO, another state agency.

But if you wanna "accidentally" blow up our building so I could get a little vacation.... [fish] [Wink]

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Licorice of the Lord! This is classy stuff...Should I be wearing a tie? Or, at least, pants?
~I'mNotDedalus

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Elkhound
It Came Upon a Midnight Clearance


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Keep your reciepts. You may be able to deduct these costs as professional expenses from your income tax. (Consult your accountant or other tax professional to be sure.)

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"The bicycle is the most civilized conveyance known to man. Other forms of transport grow daily more nightmarish. Only the bicycle remains pure in heart."--Iris Murdoch

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Zorro
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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Oh, believe you me- hubby is a financial analyst, so yeah, all these expenses go into the tax file. [Wink]

--------------------
"Seize the day! Make your lives extraordinary!"
-John Keating, "Dead Poets Society"

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BlushingBride
We Wish You a Merry Giftmas


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quote:
Originally posted by Lainie:
quote:
Originally posted by Sara at home:
Do you realize that if you were a high school student you could be suspended or expelled for making that comment about your school, let alone the entire NJDOE?

At my daughter's former school, kids can be suspended for using a profanity. [Roll Eyes]
In high school, I was "suspended"* for three days because another student had a letter in his locker that I wrote him (at his house, off school property, not during or related to any school activity) in which I wrote "sh-t." (Including the hyphen.) First I was called into the office, out of a class where I could have been learning things, and yelled at for almost an hour, then I was suspended. For using the phrase "giving you sh-t." Yeah.

*I didn't actually get suspended because my Mom spent 45 minutes after school one day chatting with the Vice principal and demanding to see where in the student handbook it said that words which were close to but not actually curse words were forbidden. She won.

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"In perfume, as in underwear, the scantiest of applications provides the greatest of returns." -Silas Sparkhammer

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Richl
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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The only time I was ever suspended was once in Catholic middle school for ditching class to go to the arcade across the street with a couple of other kids.

In high school tried to cut out of some classes and as i'm walking out a side door a police cruiser comes rolling up. But then a teacher snagged my shirt and dragged me back in to go sit in the principles office.

Teachers never reprimanded us for cursing, only fighting.

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Ian - Crawling on a Mirror
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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quote:
Originally posted by Richl:
The only time I was ever suspended was once in Catholic middle school for ditching class to go to the arcade across the street with a couple of other kids.

I've never quite understood the use of out-of-school OR in-school suspension.

In either case, I see it to probably just compound the problem, usually.

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"I told you I didn't do it!" - Mr. Green

THATCHRUEF Network! Updated 9/29!

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Rebochan the Retail Reindeer
Good King Wal-Mart


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I was given an in-school suspension in second grade for language. After an entire PE class of the teacher making fun of me in front of the students until I burst into tears, I apparently called her a pain in the ass.

During the day, the vice principal, as required, had to have a conference with my mother. I learned many years after the fact that she told my mom "That woman may very well *be* a pain in the ass, but your daughter can't call her one." [lol]

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"One original thought is worth a thousand mindless quotings." -- Diogenes

"Vote Republican! We won't burn you at the stake for your religious beliefs or slaughter your family and steal your land." -- Ramblin' Dave

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Lainie
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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I was told that the purpose of both in-school and out-of-school suspension was to punish the child by socially isolating them. Since my daughter was a social outcast to begin with, it made very little sense to punish her that way. She loved in-school suspension -- she got to stay in a room away from the kids who constantly harrassed her, and do all her schoolwork at her own speed. The only thing she didn't like about out-of-school suspension was that I made her get up and do chores.

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How homophobic do you have to be to have penguin gaydar? - Lewis Black

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Cervus
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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I never understood out-of-school suspension either, since the kids at my schools who received it usually did so for, among other things, skipping school because they didn't want to be there in the first place. OSS was reserved for the really bad kids that the administrators didn't want to deal with themselves. Unfortunately, those were the kids who needed the most help and guidance.

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"There is no constitutional right to sleep with endangered reptiles." -- Carl Hiaasen
Won't somebody please think of the adults!

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Lainie
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by Cervus:
OSS was reserved for the really bad kids that the administrators didn't want to deal with themselves. Unfortunately, those were the kids who needed the most help and guidance.

Tell me about it. The more they suspended my kid, the worse her behavior got.

Although they did have enough sense to use ISS for kids who cut class.

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How homophobic do you have to be to have penguin gaydar? - Lewis Black

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quiltsbypam
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by Lainie:
quote:
Originally posted by Cervus:
OSS was reserved for the really bad kids that the administrators didn't want to deal with themselves. Unfortunately, those were the kids who needed the most help and guidance.

Tell me about it. The more they suspended my kid, the worse her behavior got.

Although they did have enough sense to use ISS for kids who cut class.

I used to beg my older son's school to do ISS. He'd cut class and, to punish him, they'd give him a few days vacation. Never made any sense to me. It just made my life harder because I still had to go to work, but then didn't know where the heck he was all day. And I live an hour away, so I couldn't just buzz home to check. That made lots of sense to me. [Roll Eyes]

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"No Biblical hell could ever be worse than the state of perpetual inconsequence." Beatrice in Dangerous Beauty

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Ramblin' Dave, quietly making noise
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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At my high school, you could be suspended for missing more than a certain number of classes (I think it was three), and three tardies counted as one absence, even if it was just a matter of walking back from the lunchroom. The catch is, the school was spread out over four buildings, so a walk back from the lunchroom (or between any two classes) could conceivably take fifteen minutes or more. If you had a class in Building 1 followed by a class in building 2 and your locker was in Building 3 (this was often the case with me!), then you had to either carry all your books around all day or risk flunking a class or two.

That was bad enough. What was worse was that the rule was enforced selectively. I knew a kid whose mother was a certified teacher (not at our school) and whose father was offered some kind of short term job on the West Coast. If my friend went out to California with his dad, he'd miss a few weeks of classes. His mother submitted lesson plans to the school board for homeschooling him and keeping him up to date with his classmates - if not ahead of them - but she was nonetheless told he'd be flunked for the quarter even if he kept up on his work. On the other hand, when the well-dressed girls whose fathers were all lawyers at the same firm downtown were late getting back from lunch a couple of times a week (which added up to many more than nine times a quarter), their appeals were routinely accepted and they never flunked!

I suppose it was a valuable lesson in how the real world works!

--------------------
Another lifetime I'd have fallen in love with you
Swept away by my feelings, ashamed and confused
But just now it's enough to be walking with you
Let the mystery play as it will! -Lui Collins

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WildaBeast
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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"Unseasonable is an odd word to begin with. It sounds like it's describing something that it's impossible to sprinkle pepper on." -- Nonny

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WildaBeast
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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"Unseasonable is an odd word to begin with. It sounds like it's describing something that it's impossible to sprinkle pepper on." -- Nonny

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WildaBeast
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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All through school I had a reputation as the good kid who never broke any rules, but I actually did get suspended once. I was in the first grade, and it was for drawing on my desk. That must have been the required punishment for "defacing school property" (and yes, I did receive several warnings first). Looking back I probably drew on my desk besause the first grade ciriculum wasn't very challenging for me, and I was bored.

Anyway, my teacher told my mom that I was supposed to help her clean the house during my day of suspension so it would be a punishment and not a day off. Little did she know that in many ways I am a clone of Adrian Monk* and I actually enjoyed cleaning. [Razz]

*Monk is a TV detective with OCD for those of you who've never heard of him.

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"Unseasonable is an odd word to begin with. It sounds like it's describing something that it's impossible to sprinkle pepper on." -- Nonny

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