Link Community Charter School, a leader in middle school since 1969, is excited to announce the launch of its Elementary School, with Kindergarten to open in the fall of 2021.
Here is the full press release:
LINK COMMUNITY CHARTER SCHOOL TO LAUNCH ELEMENTARY SCHOOL PROGRAM IN FALL 2021
(Newark) Link Community Charter School, a leader in middle school education, announces it will open an elementary school, beginning with Kindergarten in September 2021. Founded in 1969 as an independent school that converted to a public charter school in 2014 to serve students from Newark, Irvington, Orange, and East Orange in 2014, Link’s middle school focus has nurtured thousands of scholars in preparation for exemplary competitive high schools across the city, state and region. With a 50 plus year legacy, strong student outcomes, and a deep commitment to social justice and educational equity, Link is poised to use its middle school experience to launch elementary grade levels that will build a strong foundation for young scholars. Link’s school board chair Brenda Daughtry, expressed the entire board’s commitment to delivering the best educational program to its students, saying, “The school board and leadership have collectively sought to add the lower grades so we could start earlier in our work to prepare our scholar.” As a parent of a Link alumnus, she “recalls Link always feeling like home – a place where students are nurtured and families are welcomed.”
Starting with the addition of Kindergarten in the fall of 2021, grades 1 through 4 will be added in subsequent years as students are promoted. The Kindergarten Program will serve 50 students using a co-teaching model resulting in a low student to teacher ratio, thus providing strong connections and individualized support for its youngest scholars. The program will continue Link’s long-time commitment to a strong academic program, the arts, enrichment, and personal growth. In keeping with the middle school, the Kindergarten Program will also provide an inclusive setting that will serve students with special needs and English language learners. Maria Pilar Paradiso, Link’s Head of School, shared “that the program will exude Link’s warm community and bring joyful learning to young scholars, nurturing their minds, bodies, and spirits. We are thrilled to open the doors to little ones! This expansion is the result of Link’s steadfast commitment to equity. We must start earlier to bridge the educational gaps that still exist for our communities of color. Every child deserves a quality education and a real opportunity to thrive!”
Link began its journey as Project Link, an independent school with 7th and 8th grades in the Central Ward, in 1969 in the aftermath of the Newark rebellion .In 2014, the school converted to a public charter school and added two grade levels, creating a four year middle school, after moving into the Lincoln Park neighborhood at 23 Pennsylvania Avenue. The NJ Department of Education approved Link’s recent request for amendment to its charter to add an elementary school to create a K-8 continuum.