After successfully training academically equipped, spiritually minded leaders for seven years, New Covenant Christian Academy’s landlord doled out a series of unforeseen, unpredictable, and unfortunate decisions at the end of the summer that forced the 2013-2014 closure of a school that many beyond its own community of lifelong learners deem a community asset.
NCCA’s slogan Working Together for Wonderful Results was clearly on view as Executive Director & co-founder, Stephanie DeGeneste worked for the past three years with high school leaders from the seven schools in Plainfield who educate high school students. This was part of an initiative she presented to the mayor and subsequently called the Mayor Sharon Robinson-Briggs High School Leaders Forum for Change. The annual workshops emerged into an elite Task Force of students who were the ambassadors for their respective schools.
Under DeGeneste’s direction, the students met with the mayor once a month to plan worthwhile community service projects. The group actually adopted the name YOUNG-Youth Operating in Unity for the New Generation. A great moment of pride came when a group of representatives from five of the seven high schools joined together to clean up the cemetery on Plainfield Avenue. "Mrs. D," as most people call her, sincerely believes that youth are critical stakeholders that should be developed to be willing and able to make significant contributions in their community through service oriented projects. An advocate of team building through unified efforts, Mrs. D was thrilled to have NCCA students collaborate with students from Barack Obama Academy of Academic and Civic Development, Barack Obama Green Charter High School, Koinonia Academy, Plainfield Academy of the Arts and Advanced Studies, Plainfield High School, and Union County TEAMS Charter School. Although NCCA’s independent K-12 school is not operating this year, DeGeneste is still going to explore ways that YOUNG can continue to have a positive impact on Plainfield.
An unexpected school closure is a setback. However, NCCA is seeking to soar above the setbacks, operate in the opportunities, and apprehend the achievements that will be garnered with the help of almighty God. The New Covenant Christian Association, Inc. Board of Directors is looking into the feasibility of re-opening in time for the 2014 academic year. That will be contingent on many factors, principal among them securing a new location to house the school.
There may be someone reading this article that can be the conduit to New Covenant Christian Academy getting into space that will advance its vital work in the community. Of course there are many other needs that NCCA has at this time and you may want to see how you can help to ensure the school continues soaring above the setbacks and operating in the opportunities that will ultimately produce the achievement of re-opening.
Call (908) 756-3322 or visit the school’s website: www.nccacdemy.org.