NEWARK, NJ - The Newark Board of Education building on 765 Broad St. is expanding its space to house all school district employees.

The expansion includes the use of the fourth, fifth, and seventh floors. Construction is expected to be completed by the end of July. The district will eventually grow to occupy close to 230,000 square feet. 

“We’re getting that at a much cheaper rate for a much more state of the art facility that will allow us to utilize the 6th floor as a large training space, also for large public meeting spaces that will ultimately allow us to do our board meetings there,” said Jason Ballard, assistant school business administrator. 

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The district budgeted $3.6 million toward the buildout, additional lease costs, and new computers for administrators. 

Future plans for the central office include classrooms and other larger instructional space that Superintendent Roger León has as part of his Clarity 2020 strategic plan, according to Ballard. 

Clarity 2020 outlines several strategies geared to creating a better relationship between the central office and school-based staff.  León plans to implement shared training and professional development particularly in culturally responsive, trauma-informed learning. 

León also wants to develop an educator-to-administrator talent pipeline to groom top teachers for school leadership and administrative roles. 

Newark Public Schools signed a 16-year lease agreement and moved from 2 Cedar St. to 765 Broad St. in December 2017. 

The lower level of the building houses training spaces and Students 2 Science, a hands-on STEM lab used by students across the district. 

Offices are currently on the first, second, and third floors. Approximately 100 district employees will move from Harold Wilson school and the former student support center at 301 West Kinney St. into the Broad Street building.

Harold Wilson will reopen for the 2020-2021 school year. The 301 West Kinney building will open as the new Newark Vocational High School this fall.