Innovation & Public School Choice Options

The goal of the Department of Education is to increase the number of high-quality school options for each student. The department strives to provide high-quality public education to all children regardless of zip code, and, therefore. has encouraged the growth of public school choice programs, including Interdistrict Public School Choice, Charter Schools and Renaissance Schools. These programs offer educational choices to parents so that they can select programs that best serve their child's needs.

Charter Schools

A charter school is a public school that operates as its own Local Education Agency (LEA) under a charter granted by the Commissioner.

Interdistrict Public School Choice

The Interdistrict Public School Choice Program is designed to increase educational opportunities for New Jersey students and their families by providing students with the option of attending a public school outside their district of residence without cost to their parents.

Renaissance Schools

In 2012, the legislature enacted the "Urban Hope Act" (N.J.S.A. 18A:36C) to empower the school districts of Camden, Newark and Trenton to partner with experienced non-profit organizations to open high-quality renaissance schools in new facilities. The Commissioner of Education subsequently adopted regulations to establish a process for implementing the Urban Hope Act.

School Innovation

A process through which educational leaders design, implement and continuously improve an approach to educating students that rethinks the traditional classroom and leverages the limited resources of technology, talent and time to better meet the needs of all students.

Also of Interest: Nonpublic Schools | Home Schooling | Title I