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Lagana Bill to Require School Districts to Adopt Nepotism Policies Clears Committee

Lagana Gavel

TRENTON – Legislation sponsored by Senator Joseph Lagana which would require school districts and charter schools to adopt nepotism policies cleared the Senate Education Committee today.

“We must ensure that our school districts are hiring the most qualified people for the job, without allowing personal relations to taint their judgment,” said Senator Lagana (D-Bergen/Passaic). “All hirings should involve a competitive application process and end with the hiring of the best possible candidate.”

The bill, S-2637, would direct boards of education of school districts and county vocational school districts to adopt and implement a nepotism policy. The adoption of such a policy would be required to receive state aid. At minimum, the policy would have to include the provisions outlined in the bill.

The bill would also direct the board of trustees of a charter school to adopt and implement a nepotism policy, incorporating the provisions outlined in the bill.

The policy would apply to relatives of school board members, chief school administrators, school business administrators, school board attorneys and directors of personnel.

A school district or county vocational district could exclude per diem substitutes and student employees from its nepotism policy.

The bill was released from committee by a vote of 3-0, and next heads to the full Senate for further consideration.