Jersey City: Enrollment Statistics for Public Schools Receiving Taxpayer DollarsThe NJ Department of Education collects enrollment data broken out by Grade, Race, and Sex for every public school in New Jersey. Enrollment data also captures the number of students, by school, who qualify for free or reduced-price lunch. On this page I've looked at this enrollment data through a few different lenses, in order to better understand the demographics of public schools, including charter schools. Also, a quick note. This page is a work in process and I may add more charts and info graphics, based on feedback and my own research process as a parent and resident.
A few notes about the map.
- Red Pin Drops = Jersey City Public Schools
- Blue Pin Drops = Charter Schools
- Click on a pin drop to view the school name and address
Enrollment data is reported to the NJ Department of Education ("NJ DOE") on a per-school district basis. And for Jersey City's purposes, "school districts" include
a) Jersey City 40-school "public school system", i.e. "Jersey City Public Schools"
b) Charter schools. Each charter school is its own "district" for NJ DOE reporting purposes.
Shown below are charter schools and public schools serving Jersey City youth. The chart shows the percentage of enrolled students who qualify for free or reduced price lunch. The schools are grouped by grades served. Again, as a reminder, this data is sourced from 2016-17 NJ Department of Education enrollment data.
Here are the same schools, but ranked from highest to lowest without grouping by grades served.
The percentage of enrolled students who qualify for free or reduced lunch gives insight into the income levels at each school. Free and reduced lunch eligibility guidelines are determined by the federal government and income thresholds for 2016-17 are shown at this link; I've also included an excerpt below:
Charter schools are public schools operated independently, per an individual "charter" with the state, from the citywide public school system. Charter schools are not subject to JC Board of Education oversight.
In the preliminary* 2018/19 annual Jersey City Public Schools budget, there were 22 charter schools listed (see page 31 at this link). This means: Jersey City kids are expected to attend 22 charter schools in 2018/19, thus public funds are "following those children" into the charter school. The preliminary budget tells us that:
- 6,264 Jersey City kids are expected to attend 22 different charter schools in 2018/19
- Nearly $68 million of public dollars will "pass through" the JCPS budget to these 22 charter schools; the money will "follow the children" to their respective schools.
- This means: of the $641 million proposed JCPS budget in 2018/19, $68 million is actually going to charter schools.
Finally, please note that I have excluded from this summary those charter schools that enroll fewer than 100 Jersey City students. The charters I did include are listed below, but for a full listing of all 22 charters you can refer to the 2018/19 preliminary JCPS budget.
*Preliminary means the budget has not yet been approved / finalized by the county or state yet. The final budget is expected in the June timeframe, after the state finalizes its budget.