A popular after school program for children of working families known as New Jersey After 3, which had planned to shutter due to a loss of state funding, will continue its work through a new partnership with the state Department of Education, Gov. Chris Christie announced today.
The partnership, forged in the program’s eleventh hour, will help New Jersey After 3 remain operational and help the state apply for a waiver to the federal No Child Left Behind law. The application requires proof of a state's commitment to extending students’ learning time, the program’s hallmark.
“New Jersey After 3 is a good and worthwhile program that benefits children and working families,” Christie said in a statement.
The federal No Child Left Behind law requires students nationwide to demonstrate proficiency in math and reading by 2014. States seeking to waive that requirement must apply by deadlines in November or January and prove that they are making progress toward that goal.
Since its inception in 2004, NJ After 3 has extended the school day by 40 percent for some 75,000 students in 29 school districts across the state, offering tutoring, fitness activities, arts programs and other services for the families it served.