This is the latest scheme that Superintendent La’Quetta Small and the majority of the Atlantic City Board of Education are pursuing.

Atlantic City Board of Education Member John Devlin has confirmed some deeply troubling facts.

The ACBOE is planning to budget $ 10 million to tear down (and build new) at the New Jersey Avenue School … a historic site that could have been saved had the ACBOE not allowed the insurance for the building to lapse in the past.

The new build would be for new administration offices.

Hurricane Super Storm Sandy caused significant water damage, which would have been covered by insurance according to Devlin.

Instead, the ACBOE paid more than $ 1 million for mold abatement and other associated expenses, according to Devlin.

Things got so bad there that former superintendent Barry Caldwell forbid district staff from entering the building due to its deteriorating condition.

The New Jersey Avenue School could have been transformed into the central administration offices, instead of paying more than $500,000 a year in rent, utilities, insurance and more.

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To add insult to injury, while planning to spend $ 10 million dollars … at the same time, the ACBOE is spending several million dollars to make substantial improvements at The Citi Center Building at 1300 Atlantic Avenue (where the ACBOE currently rents space), according to Devlin.

“The administration is responsible for an ongoing, wasteful saga,” said Devlin.

“Unfortunately, for all those involved, I don’t see an end in sight. The current plan, initially set in motion photo by former superintendent Barry Caldwell calls $ 10 million-plus in new spending,” said Devlin.

“This is excessive and just not fiscally responsible. Sadly there’s an old adage that seems to fit here. Piss poor planning gives you piss poor results. No way should our tax payers foot the bill for this exorbitant amount of money,” said Devlin.

Former Superintendent Fred Nickles was trying to get the Board of Education out of the massive monthly rental, which costs more than $ 500,000 per-month plus utilities, insurance, etc. many years ago.

Yet, it has continued for more than 20 years.

Earlier the ACBOE discussed a new administration building in the range of $ 4-5 million according to Devlin.

The previous administration building was sufficient for 100 years. Now, it is deemed to be too small, despite declining enrollment in He Atlantic City public school system.

For example, Devlin advised that there are empty wings of space at Atlantic City High School.

All cost-effective options should be explored before obligating the tax payers of Atlantic City for more than $10 million in new spending.

Here’s another look at The New Jersey Avenue School.

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SOURCE: John Devlin, Atlantic City Board of Education Member.

New Jersey's Latest School Rankings

New Jersey high school graduation rates

The lists below show 4-year graduation rates for New Jersey public schools for the 2020-21 school year. The statewide graduation rate fell slightly, from 91% in 2019-20 to 90.6%.

The lists, which are sorted by county and include a separate list for charter schools, also include a second graduation rate, which excludes students whose special education IEPs allow them to qualify for diplomas despite not meeting typical coursework and attendance requirements.

Columns with an asterisk or 'N' indicate there was no data or it was suppressed to protect student privacy.

 

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