Beck Praises Department of Education Commissioner’s Decision to Fund Freehold Borough Schools Expansion
85% of Project Costs to Be Paid by State
Senator Jennifer Beck (R-11) announced that Commissioner of Education David Hespe has ruled that Freehold Borough may proceed with school construction, and the State of New Jersey will fund 85% of all project expenses after local referendums have twice failed. The Commissioner’s decision specifically cites that Freehold Borough’s students cannot receive a thorough and efficient education in their current conditions. For the 2016-2017 school year, the borough schools are 572 students over capacity.
“This is a historic day for Freehold Borough. The process of filing an official appeal to the Commissioner of Education is a long and in-depth process that is rarely employed because of the incredible amount of scrutiny and fact-finding that must occur. The facts in Freehold Borough speak for themselves. Over the last decade, their student population has grown dramatically while State funding has remained essentially flat. It is exceedingly rare for the legal challenge to result in the State of New Jersey paying 85% of the costs of a project,” said Beck.
This says it all: "Students broke into wide smiles. Parents wiped away tears. Others sat at the edge of their seats in shock and sheer joy: Relief is finally coming for Freehold Borough schools."
She continued, “This success for Freehold Borough would not have been possible without the community coming together and being vocal advocates for their schools. Superintendent Tomazic, the Freehold Borough School Board, Mayor Nolan Higgins and the Borough Council, teachers, parents and residents all spoke with one voice and their hard work has clearly paid off. The real winners here are the students of Freehold Learning Center, Park Avenue Elementary and Freehold Intermediate School.”