New Jersey Department of Education

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School Climate and Culture

An enduring positive school climate and culture are essential conditions for fostering learning and positive youth development that results in productive and fulfilling lives. The NJDOE supports school efforts to assess, develop and maintain positive school climates and cultures and other conditions that affect student learning and growth.

NJ School Climate Improvement (NJ SCI) Platform

NJ SCI LogoThe Department encourages schools interested in utilizing a school climate survey to consider using the no-cost NJ School Climate Improvement (NJ SCI) Platform, which features a new and enhanced, comprehensive instrument developed in collaboration with the School Climate Transformation Project at Rutgers University.  The NJ SCI Survey replaced the New Jersey School Climate Survey (NJSCS) and was developed with the specific needs of New Jersey schools in mind.  It is designed to help schools to understand school climate needs and strengths from the perspectives of students, families, and staff, but will also provide insight into a school community’s relationships, safety, sense of connectedness, teaching and learning, and measures of an equitable and supportive learning environment, including supports for social and emotional learning. Schools electing to use the NJ SCI Survey will also have access to an online platform managed by Rutgers University that will facilitate data collection and analysis, strategic planning, and progress monitoring. 

The survey and associated communication tools are available in multiple languages for students and parents and caregivers.  The NJ SCI Survey development process included an expansive input process, involving representatives from educational organizations that support schools and districts to ensure the survey meets the current and emerging needs of K-12 schools in the state. 

Visit www.njschoolclimate.org to submit an interest form for your school district and receive more information. 

Statutes

Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act (N.J.S.A. 18A:37-21) requires the school safety team in each school in the district "… to develop, foster, and maintain a positive school climate by focusing on the on-going, systemic process and practices in the school and to address school climate issues …" and to "review and strengthen school climate and the policies of the school…")

Additional Information

All regulations below can be found at the NJDOE Administrative Code and Statute page:

N.J.A.C. 6A:16-7.1(a), Code of Student Conduct (District boards of education are required to "… to develop, adopt and implement a code of student conduct which establishes standards, policies and procedures for positive student development and student behavioral expectations …")


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