RED BANK, NJ – March 1, 2017 – Red Bank Charter School, a high-achieving, racially and ethnically integrated, tuition-free preK-8 public school, announced today that its charter has been renewed by state acting Education Commissioner Kimberley Harrington for another five years.
“For nearly two decades, Red Bank Charter School has provided a choice in public education for Red Bank families and we are thrilled that the DOE has given us the opportunity to continue serving our community,” said Meredith Pennotti, the school’s principal.
“We offer students the opportunity to learn and grow in a racially and ethnically integrated school immersed in one another’s culture and experiences that prepares them not only for the community in which they live, but for the world they will inherit as adults,” Pennotti said.
The DOE’s renewal comes after a rigorous review process that included a visit to the school in October. During that visit, state DOE officials found RBCS was “faithful to its mission and has implemented the key design elements included in its charter.”
The DOE noted the environment in hallways and classrooms, in interactions among staff and students, was warm and nurturing.
“The school promotes a culture of high expectations and is safe, respectful and supportive,” the DOE wrote in its review. “Interviewed students spoke about the community feel of the school. They indicated that the school feels like a ‘family’ where they are free to pursue activities they find interesting and may have a positive impact on the community.”
The DOE also noted that the school’s Board of Trustees, consisting of members with “notable expertise in education, law and finance,” had the capacity to govern the school effectively.
The board, the DOE said, was committed to ensuring the school served a diverse school-age population and had requested a weighted lottery to provide a 3:2 enrollment preference to economically disadvantaged students.
For the 2016-17 school year, Red Bank Charter School is 43 percent white, 43 percent Hispanic and 12 percent African-American, closely reflecting the school-age population of Red Bank, which is 36 percent white, 39 percent Hispanic and 25 percent African American, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Communities Survey 2010-14 five-year estimates.
The DOE also praised the school for increasing communications to the community to ensure a broad understanding of what the charter school is and how to apply, noting that it had sent information about its application to every postal customer in Red Bank.
The deadline to submit an application for the 2017-18 school year is noon on March 29, 2017. A random lottery will be held on March 30 at 7 p.m. to select students. Children who were not selected in the lottery are invited to be placed on a waiting list for admission to the school. The school is presently filled to capacity with more than 100 students on the waiting list.
Red Bank Charter School is a public school open to all children who live in Red Bank. There is no test required for admission.