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State launches NJ Partnership for Student Success initiative

The Murphy Administration has announced the launch of the New Jersey Partnership for Student Success (NJPSS), an initiative designed to harness the energy of volunteers and community organizations to help students, educators and schools as they work to address learning loss and other challenges in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

With the goal of engaging up to 5,000 individuals, the NJPSS will be an effort to recruit, screen, train and support tutors, mentors, student success coaches, wraparound service coordinators and post-secondary transition coaches, according to a press release from the office of Gov. Phil Murphy.

These individuals will work with educators, parents and other stakeholders to accelerate student learning, empower educators and strengthen community partnerships, according to the press release.

Over the next several months the Department of Education will expand the NJPSS initiative. The NJPSS website will serve as a central point of reference for district administrators, educators and parents to access resources, professional development opportunities and funding opportunities to bolster New Jersey’s educational system.

For example, in the upcoming months, the department will launch three key funding opportunities and guidance all geared toward academic recovery, according to the press release.

These opportunities include a statewide high-impact tutoring program supported by at least $10 million in federal funding from the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief fund; two targeted early literacy professional development programs, including the $2 million Reading Acceleration Professional Integrated Development program allocated in the Fiscal Year 2023 state budget; and a complementary $3 million American Rescue Plan ESSER-funded program targeting upper elementary grades, and guidance in maximizing scheduling to address academic recovery, according to the press release.

“As schools across our state and the nation deal with the impact of COVID-19 on both students and educators, we must address the challenges facing our school community, including learning loss,” Murphy said.

“This initiative will create the opportunity for members of the broader community to get involved in supporting the social, emotional and academic needs of students. I encourage interested individuals and organizations to learn more about how they can help ensure the success of our students by participating in the New Jersey Partnership for Student Success,” he said.

“Accelerating student learning post-pandemic is of the utmost importance to ensure students are recovering from the pandemic and achieving and exceeding educational goals,” said Dr. Angelica Allen-McMillan, acting commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Education.

“Our New Jersey Partnership for Student Success initiative will use the support of our community to help our students thrive. The department will help coordinate NJPSS volunteers with schools in need to provide academic and wraparound services,” she said.

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, approximately $4 billion in federal funding has been made available to New Jersey school districts to address the pandemic-related needs of students and staff, according to the press release.

The Murphy Administration has devoted nearly $270 million of its set-aside federal Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) funding to academic recovery initiatives, according to the press release.

The NJPSS aims to provide additional adults in and out of the school setting to help fuel student learning and address challenges that have been exacerbated by the pandemic, according to the press release.

The Department of Education will support parents, educators and other stakeholders in fulfilling roles designed to improve academic performance, increase high school graduation rates and reduce chronic absenteeism.

To learn more about NJPSS and to apply to serve as a mentor tutor or a wraparound service coordinator to offer additional support for students and educators, visit www.nj.gov/education/njpss/

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