WOODLAND PARK, NJ - The Woodland Park Planning Board approved a certificate of occupancy on Aug. 7 for School #1, 665 McBride Ave., which is being leased by the John P. Holland Charter School from the Woodland Park Board of Education.
The lease term is for two years, with an option to extend it for one additional year, according to Thomas DiFluri, school board business administrator.
The Woodland Park School District will receive $160,000 per year from the lease. DiFluri said that as the lease happened quickly, the school board does not have any specific plans for the influx of funds.
"The district has a variety of educational and facility needs that this funding will help alleviate," he said. "This will be a topic for board discussion in the near future."
Located in Paterson and founded in 2001, the John P. Holland Charter School is a public school open to all students from Paterson on a space-available basis. It does not discriminate in its admission policies on any basis.
The new pre-school, which is offered free and full time, will serve 90 students age 3 and 4, according to John P. Holland Charter School Founder and Principal Christina Scano. It will open on Sept. 5.
In March, the school was approved an expansion by the state and given 375 additional seats. It will expand from 201 students in kindergarten to 8th grade to serving 576 in pre-K to 8th grade between its two locations.
The pre-K students will be dropped off by parents or van to the School #1 location, Scano added. There will be no buses.
"There will be a before care and after care to make sure the traffic is limited," Scano said. "We have been working with town officials to make this a very smooth process."
School #1 was previously leased to the Cedar Grove School District temporarily last fall and to Windsor Academy for a number of years. The local school board had hoped to reopen the facility for district use to ease overcrowding by asking residents to approve a $495,000 bond referendum on Election Day 2016, however it was defeated by voters.