Central Jersey College Prep Charter School Holds Annual Enrollment Lottery, Announces New Brunswick Campus

Officials of the Central Jersey College Prep Charter School begin picking names for the school’s annual enrollment lottery.

By a fortuitous quirk of fate, everyone who applied for Central Jersey College Prep Charter School’s 6th Grade for the 2019-20 school year will be admitted.

The same can’t be said for any of the other upper grades, however.

The Mettlers Road charter school held its annual upper school lottery on March 20, which is when parents of rising 6th Graders heard the good news.

What they don’t know, and won’t for about a week, is whether their child will be attending the Somerset campus, or the school’s new campus on Livingston Avenue in New Brunswick, next to the Anshe Emeth Memorial Temple.

There are 96 6th Grade seats coming available in the Mettlers Road building, and another 72 in the new campus, said Namik Sercan, the school’s chief education officer. That’s 168 seats in total.

Coincidentally, Sercan said, 168 applications for the new 6th Grades were received by the school.

That includes 39 siblings of current students, who get first dibs at any open seats.

Sercan said the siblings will all go to the Somerset campus.

“The reason is because we’re not going to separate siblings,” he said. “They’re going to be on the same bus, they’re going to come to school at the same time and they’re going to be leaving at the same time.”

And while there are no current openings in grades 1-5 and 7-12, Sercan told parents to not give up hope.

“We make an assumption that all our students return next year,” he said. “In realty it’s going to be different. The numbers (of vacancies) won’t be great, but there will be numbers.”

“You never know,” he said. “We keep the waiting list throughout the school year. In November or December, you may get a call from us, you never know.”

The lottery for students in grades 1-5 was held earlier in the week. Parents there were told that the only current openings were 96 seats in Kindergarten.

Sercan has said that in several years, the only annual openings will be in Kindergarten for new students.

Sercan told rising 6th Grade parents that he strongly encouraged them to attend a meeting at the New Brunswick campus next week.

“I’m going to describe the process of how we are going to assign the students between this campus and New Brunswick, and we’re going to finalize the assignments that night,” he said. “You will know that night where your child is going to be.”

This year, the school held a weighted lottery in favor of economically disadvantaged students. The names of applicants who receive free or reduced lunches, live in Section 8 housing, receive SNAP benefits, are learning English or who are homeless were entered three times, rather than the usual one.

Lottery winners must submit their enrollment paperwork to teh school between March 25 and April 18. Students who are placed on the waiting list will begin receiving invitations to attend after April 29, as space becomes available.


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