From today’s Trentonian:
Welcome to Emily Fisher Charter School, where teachers attempt to offer lifelines to many students who arrive here with baggage; a place where even students considered to be thugs get hugs…
[I]t makes no sense to send Emily Fisher students up the street to Trenton High, where even Gov. Chris Christie admitted “serious facility deficiencies” exist.
Furthermore, if Emily Fisher is being shuttered for poor performance but it tests better than Trenton High, it seems reasonable to inquire why the Chambers Street high school [Trenton High] remains open.
What no one wants to admit is that standard public school education looks like roadkill in urban New Jersey, a situation that has cultivated a run on charter schools.
Majority Leader Reed Gusciora, in a press release:
“Emily Fisher Charter School is a unique learning environment designed to take students who have been kicked out of school, have behavioral and academic problems, or need special assistance,” Gusciora said. “Emily Fisher is giving our most vulnerable students the one-on-one attention that they need, telling them to not give up.”
“There seems to be a miscommunication with the data,” continued Gusciora. “On one hand, the DOE is stating that Emily Fisher doesn’t make the mark for both elementary and high school levels. However, the data that I have been shown has proven quite the opposite. Emily Fisher is above the proficiency levels of the Trenton public schools, not to mention, it does not even house an elementary school on its premise. It begs the question where is the DOE data coming from?”
Save Our Schools NJ supports keeping Emily Fisher open. This is a charter school that is doing what almost no other charter school does, educating a demographic of students that is even more challenging than that of the host community.
And, by all accounts including NJ DOE data, Emily Fisher is doing a good job educating these children. The Trenton host district also wants Emily Fisher to stay open.
The real question is why Acting Commissioner Cerf is trying to close this school and doing so with data so faulty that the DOE's own website contradicts it?