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For More Information Contact the Public Information Office:
    Richard Vespucci
    Kathryn Forsyth, Director

For Release: April 28, 2004

DOE Releases Charter School Applications

The New Jersey Department of Education has released the 2004 charter school application for anyone interested in opening a charter school for the 2005-06 school year. Completed applications are due to the department no later than July 15, 2004.

New charter school applications are being mailed to people who have expressed interest in opening a charter school. Applications have also been sent to the county offices of education, as well as associations and foundations that have expressed interest.

The department will further assist prospective applicants by offering two technical assistance workshops on May 12 at the department’s headquarters in Trenton and on May 17 at the Southern Regional Office in Sewell. Registration forms are attached and are also accessible from the DOE Web-site through the following link:

Each application will be reviewed by a panel of independent readers, followed by an in-depth interview with Department of Education officials. Local school districts located in the district or region of the prospective charter school are also encouraged to submit comments to the Commissioner.

All new applicants have the opportunity to apply for competitive grants for start-up funds. This year, the grant application process has been incorporated into the application process.

Charter schools are public schools operated under a charter granted by the Commissioner of Education. Each charter school is independent of the district board of education and is managed by a board of trustees. Charter schools have the flexibility to experiment with innovative strategies and techniques in order to improve student achievement.

New Jersey currently has 48 operating charter schools that enroll approximately 14,000 students. An additional five charter schools are scheduled to open in September 2004 and one school is scheduled to open in September 2005.

Charter school applications can be obtained from the Office of Innovative Programs and Schools, 609-292-5850, or from the department’s Web-site: