NEWARK, N.J. – Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg gave Newark $100 million. And the city has no idea how to spend it, apparently.
Zuckerberg, the 26-year-old founder and CEO of Facebook, announce a donation of $100 million to the Newark, New Jersey, schools on the Oprah Winfrey show in September, in a bold bid to improve one of the country's worst performing public school systems.
Now a legislator is criticizing how officials are spending all that dough in New Jersey's largest city, following the revelation that one of the first acts in the reform process has people knocking on 91,000 doors to ask Newark residents for suggestions on how to improve the schools.
The chairman of the state Assembly's education committee told The Star-Ledger of Newark that the results will be predictable and the cost is too high.
The Partnership for Education in Newark was set up to match Mark Zuckerberg's $100 million gift. It estimates the outreach effort and advertising and public relation costs will total $1 million.
Defenders say the outreach will help form a clear strategy for spending the rest of the money.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.