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Governor Christie’s Investment in Charter Schools Yields Invaluable Return in Student Performance

Governor Chris Christie

Governor Chris Christie

Trenton, NJ, May 25, 2016 ― Governor Chris Christie on May 18 visited Bergen Arts and Sciences Charter School (BASCS) in Hackensack, highlighting the type of successful classrooms and challenging curriculum that his administration is working to replicate in public schools and new charter schools across New Jersey.

“BASCS is a model public school, offering children opportunities to excel as budding experts in high-demand fields,” Governor Christie said.  “This is the kind of accountable and challenging learning environment that New Jersey’s successful charter schools are providing students in every ZIP code.”

“Charter schools like BASCS are ensuring America will remain a powerhouse, particularly when it comes to developing and executing cutting-edge technologies and other critical STEM-related careers,” Governor Christie said.

“As we continue to recognize the 20th anniversary of the state Charter School Act, my administration will fulfill our commitment and moral obligation to provide responsible educational opportunities for students and their families,” the Governor continued.

During the May 18 visit, Governor Christie took a moment to commend BASCS student Abigail Yashiro, who last December was one of two New Jerseyans selected to participate in the prestigious week-long United States Senate Youth Program in Washington, D.C.

Just two high school juniors or seniors from the 50 states, District of Columbia and Department of Defense Education Activity are chosen to participate each year.

BASCS opened in the 2007-08 school year with students in grades K-5, adding a new grade each year through the 2014-15 school year when the school reached its full K-12 enrollment.

BASCS’ first grade-12 class boasted a 93% graduation rate, which ranks in the 84th percentile among peer schools, according to New Jersey’s school performance report. Nearly half of BASCS students take at least one AP Test in English, Math, Social Studies or Science. That is in the 87th percentile in the state and well above the statewide target of 35%.

Since the beginning of his administration, Governor Christie has demonstrated a commitment to investing in innovative, successful charter schools that outperform and exceed expectations at every level.

Thirty-nine of New Jersey’s 89 charter schools have opened in the past six years, and next year, the number of authorized charter school seats will increase by 10% to more than 50,000.

In February 2016, the DOE approved the expansion of 16 charter schools, renewed the charters of 19 schools, and approved 3 new schools to open in the 2017-2018 school year.

In districts such as Newark and Camden, charter schools are educating more than one-third of their public school populations, proving that charter schools are a valued option in the public education system and that every child deserves access to a high-quality school.