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Program Purpose – The choice program is necessary to increase options and flexibility for parents and students in selecting a school that best meets the.

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Presentation on theme: "Program Purpose – The choice program is necessary to increase options and flexibility for parents and students in selecting a school that best meets the."— Presentation transcript:

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2 Program Purpose – The choice program is necessary to increase options and flexibility for parents and students in selecting a school that best meets the needs of each student, thereby improving educational opportunities for New Jersey citizens. – The choice program has increased the degree to which the education system is responsive to parents and students. 2 Interdistrict Public School Choice

3 Interdistrict Public School Choice History  The Interdistrict Public School Choice Program was created by the New Jersey Department of Education in  On September 1, 1999, the State Board of Education passed regulations establishing the Interdistrict Public School Choice Program.  In December 1999, the State Legislature enacted the Interdistrict Public School Choice Act of 1999, as a five-year pilot with substantial limitations. The act was signed into law by the Governor in January  In September of 2010, the legislature established a permanent Interdistrict Public School Choice Program.  In 2011, the Interdistrict Public School Choice Program expanded to include 71 choice districts accepting almost 1,900 students.

4 Interdistrict Public School Choice  The Program has an anticipated enrollment for the school year of 3,358 students.  Two additional districts joined the program in  In 2012, 42 new districts were approved to accept students for the school year.  In September 2013 there will be 6,144 non-resident kids attending 107 choice districts.  In April of 2013, 39 new districts applied for choice or to expand their existing program.

5 Office of Interdistrict Choice Commissioner Chief Innovation Officer Evo Popoff Director Interdistrict Choice Jessani Gordon The DOE Org chart is pretty simple

6 Interdistrict Public School Choice Current Enrollment and Statistics

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9 Brief History in Numbers Fiscal YearTotal # DistrictsTotal StudentsTotal Amount $ 9,846, ,131$ 20,604, ,358$ 33,001, ,144$ 49,065,000 New Choice District Applications received for School Year New39 Program Expansions 2

10 Working on the reconciliation

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13 Program Size and Growth - Dollars Program cost: – The cost of the choice program has grown from $10 million in SY2011 to $49 million in SY2014, a 400% growth rate in three years. 13

14 Program Size and Growth - Students Student enrollment: – Enrollment in the choice program has grown from 1000 students (in 15 districts) in SY2011 to 4,700 (in 105 districts) in SY2014, a 385% growth rate in three years. – 105 choice districts will actively participate in the choice program in SY

15 The State pays the choice district its local fair share, on a per pupil basis, for each choice student plus formula aid for that student. – The State pays the district’s local fair share per pupil rate to choice districts in the form of “choice aid;” resident districts keep the levy collected for students who choice out – State formula aid follows the child to the choice district (starting in year 2) – Transportation aid stays with resident district, which continues to provide transportation 15 Per pupil local fair share Choice enrollment Choice aid Formula Aid Attributable to Choice Student State cost Interdistrict Public School Choice Funding

16 Program Features: Funding 16 For non-Adjustment Aid districts: Choice aid will equal per pupil local fair share amount times choice enrollment For Adjustment Aid districts: Choice aid will be offset by the amount of Adjustment Aid the district receives Year 1 – direct state aid only (Choice Aid) Year 2 and beyond – direct state aid plus students included in resident enrollment Students will be recorded as resident students in the October ASSA count

17 Note: no student or school-level data analysis to date.  Approximately 45% of all choice students are from districts with priority and focus schools (SY2012).  16% of all choice students are from districts with priority schools (SY2012).  Choice program is disproportionately serving students in high schools (+10ppts). 17 Interdistrict Public School Choice

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19 19 New applications: 36 Expanding programs: 10 New & expanding seats: 3,172 New special programs: 27 Applicants notified: by July 30 Interdistrict Public School Choice

20 Strategic Focus 20 Increase options and flexibility for parents and students in failing schools in selecting a high quality school that best meets the needs of each student, thereby improving educational opportunities for New Jersey citizens.

21 In general, most choice districts are in the program for fiscal purposes: – Smaller districts facing financial challenges or districts with declining or low enrollment (approx. 80%) – Districts seeking to implement innovative/special programs (approx. 20%) District participation near the 5 major urban districts is under-represented, with exception of Camden – Camden has approx. 18 choice districts nearby – Jersey City, Paterson and Trenton each have very few choice districts within commuting distance – Newark has no choice districts within commuting distance There has been an increase in the number of choice districts offering special programs: – 22 operating in SY2013 up from 14 in SY Interdistrict Public School Choice Profile

22 Benefits of Becoming a Choice District Lowers tax rates without sacrificing programs Maximizes the use of classroom space Enriches the diversity of school community Expands or establishes innovative programs Stabilizes class size School choice aid is outside the cap and unrestricted

23 Benefits to Parents and Students Better educational achievement Safer school environment Access to specialized programs (JROTC, ARTs, Agribusiness, International Baccalaureate, Math & Science Academy) Convenient to parent’s work location or afterschool caregiver

24 What types of schools or programs can become Choice ? 44 choice districts are K-6 or K-8 elementary schools 8 choice districts are K-12 districts 19 choice schools are high school only or offer specialized high school programs to choice students Morris County Choice Districts: Mine Hill; Morris Hills Regional ; Morris School District ; Mount Arlington; Wharton

25 How does a district apply to become a Choice District? Applications are available by contacting the Department of Education Applications are due each year by April 30 for the following school year implementation Board approval must accompany the application NJ Department of Education Web Site

26 Interdistrict Public School Choice Proposed Legislation

27 NJSIAA Transfer Policy 27 A student-athlete transferring from one secondary school to another, without a bona fide change of residence by that student’s parent or guardian, shall be ineligible to participate for a period of thirty (30) calendar days or one half of the maximum number of games allowed in the sport by NJSIAA rules (the ineligibility period) from the beginning of the regular schedule, whichever is less, in any sport in which the student has previously participated at the varsity level.

28 New Guidance: Limiting Resolutions 28 A sending district may adopt a resolution to limit the number of its students participating in the choice program to an approved percentage of students. The resolution may limit participation to a maximum of 10% per grade per year and/or 15% of the total student body, subject to commissioner approval upon a determination that: – the resolution is in the best interest of the district's students, and – unlimited participation in the choice program would adversely affect the district's programs, services, operations, or fiscal conditions; and – unlimited participation in the Choice program would adversely affect or limit the diversity of the remainder of the student population in the district who do not participate in the choice program

29 Proposed Legislation: Assembly No Introduced Feb. 21, 2013; sponsored by Paul Moriarty and Jay Webber Eliminates requirement that to participate in interdistrict public school choice program a student be enrolled for one year in a sending district and allows public and nonpublic school students to participate equally in program Families that have attended a nonpublic school or a school outside their district of residence in the prior year will have an equal opportunity to attend a choice school. Affected groups: – students who attended a nonpublic school – students who attended a choice school – students who are entering kindergarten and attended a nonpublic preschool

30 What Choice Districts Say About the Program: “Manchester Regional High School was one of the original pilot schools, and we have been accepting Choice students for eight years. It has been a win win for the Choice students and our district. Students from other districts benefit because they are able to come to Manchester Regional for programs that might not be available in their home district. Our school benefits because we can fill otherwise vacant seats, and the additional students help to further diversify our school population. “ Dr. Richard Ney, Superintendent Manchester Regional High School

31 What Choice Districts Say About the Program: “ School Choice has offered a demographic solution for South Hunterdon that we previously only dreamed about. We had low enrollments and high costs per pupil. We knew we needed more students, but we had no idea how to bring them in. By moving aid to receiving districts and helping with transportation costs, School Choice removed two significant barriers for parents seeking alternatives for their kids. We were thrilled to finally open our nurturing educational haven to more of the state’s young people! And thanks to School Choice, all of our students are now members of a diverse learning community that more closely approximates the global reality. “ Marie Collins, Board Member South Hunterdon Regional High School District

32 What Choice Districts Say About the Program: “The Bound Brook Board of Education is excited to announce in the school year, Bound Brook High School students will participate in a one to one iPad program. The Bound Brook School District was able to purchase the necessary equipment and tools because they are a “School of Choice.” Dan Gallagher, Ed. D., Principal Bound Brook School District

33 What Choice Districts Say About the Program: “In addition to expanding the diversity of our student population that we see as a benefit, the Choice Program allowed Quinton Township to hire a World Language Teacher. Students will now be able to expand their world view of communication and their perspective of the Spanish Culture.” Dr. Donna M. Agnew Quinton Township School District


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