Where will Camden High students attend school in Fall 2017?

Starting in fall 2017, Camden High School students in grades 9-12 will attend school less than half a mile down the road at the Cooper B. Hatch building (1875 Park Blvd).

Where will BPLA students attend school in Fall 2017?

Big Picture Learning Academy high school students, who currently use the Hatch building, will move a few doors down to the KATZ School/Boys and Girls Club building (1725 Park Blvd).

Big Picture Learning Academy middle school students will move into the annex of the Hatch building.

How did the District make this decision about temporary space?

The District made this decision based on the feedback of a few hundred people on a community survey and a series of town hall meetings with Camden High students, parents, alumni, staff, and the community. The District also held several meetings with particular school communities this winter and spring.

Based on this feedback, the priorities were to keep Camden High students together and keep them in Parkside and this plan was the most successful.

Why couldn’t Camden High move into the KATZ/Boys and Girls Club?

The Boys and Girls Club is too small to accommodate all Camden High School students and programs. Hatch is a bigger school building that will allow The High to maintain more of its academic classes and extracurricular programming.

Why is the KATZ/Boys and Girls Club building good for BPLA?

The KATZ/Boys and Girls Club building was constructed in 2001 and renovated within the last decade. There are enough classrooms and meeting space as well as a large gym and a beautiful pool. In addition, the building is near the Hatch building and in Parkside.

How will BPLA be led by one principal when it is in two buildings?

The BPLA leadership team will be based across both locations, working together to ensure a positive climate and culture in the middle and high school buildings.

Will BPLA be able to use the pool in the Boys and Girls Club?

The District is working with the Boys and Girls Club to determine whether BPLA students can access the pool at specific times after school.

Where will KATZ students attend school in Fall 2017?

KATZ students will attend other schools in the Camden Charter School Network.

Will the temporary spaces for Camden High and BPLA change during the five-year reconstruction process?

The District’s goal is to give students a consistent learning environment throughout the reconstruction of Camden High School. Therefore we do not expect any changes until the new Camden High Campus opens in 2021.

Will all of the classes currently offered at Camden High be offered when the school is at Hatch?

The core academic courses offered at Camden High School (math, science, social students, English) will be available when the school is relocated this fall. Three Career and Technical Education programs that require specialty equipment—auto body, construction trades, and electrical engineering—will not be available during the reconstruction. Based on current enrollment, fewer than 20 students will be effected by these changes, and those students can choose to continue their CTE pathway at Woodrow Wilson High School.

Where will Camden High sports teams practice and have games?

Right now the District is working with Camden High administrators, community partners, and the Schools Development Authority to find temporary spaces for athletics and as many of The High’s extra-curricular programs as possible. The District will inform families and the community in the coming months as locations are finalized.

Will the Parent Linking Program be part of the Camden High School at Hatch?

Camden High School students with children under 2-years-old can still benefit from the Parent Linking Program during the relocation. The program will be based less than half a mile down the road at the Early Childhood Development Center. Students interested in signing up for the program should call 856-966-2000 ext 65572.

Will the Camelot Program be part of the Camden High School at Hatch?

The Camelot program will be relocated to another District-owned building in the neighborhood. The details will be announced here this summer.

What will happen to the gymnasium floor and scoreboard?

The Schools Development Authority will work with District staff to remove and, whenever possible, preserve key features of The High before demolition.

How many students will attend the newly constructed Camden High School?

The new Camden High School campus is expected to be home to 1,200 students. There will be four traditional District public high schools under one roof, all with grades 9-12: Camden High School, Creative Arts Morgan Village Academy, Brimm Medical Arts High School, and Big Picture Learning Academy.

Will the new Camden High School campus be home to any charter or renaissance schools?
No. All four small learning communities housed on the Camden High School campus will be traditional District public schools.

What is a Small Learning Community?
Smaller Learning Communities are independent District high schools formed around a specific curricular theme. Examples here in Camden are the Big Picture Learning Academy, Brimm Medical Arts High School, and the Creative Arts Morgan Village Academy. These schools teach fewer students than traditional public high schools, and often have higher graduation rates and fewer drop-outs. Trenton Central High School in New Jersey credits its rising graduation rate on the decision to break the large traditional public school into four small learning communities.

What facilities will the new campus offer?

Every space in the new Camden High School will be purpose-built to meet students’ diverse educational, social, and emotional needs. Students will have access to two state-of-the-art gymnasiums and locker rooms, as well as an occupational therapy/physical therapy center, a weight and training room, and a cardio fitness center.

Classrooms will be built to support the diverse academic pursuits offered on the new Camden High School campus. Overall, the campus will offer four modern media centers (one in each school), nine state-of-the-art science labs, an engineering and robotics lab, a forensics lab, a black box studio, and more.

The campus will also boast a new, light-filled cafeteria, guidance offices, modern nurse’s office, a special space for bilingual student services, a school-to-career advice center, a nursery for the children of teen parents, and a dedicated space for students to access community services.

How will The High’s history be preserved?

The District is working with the SDA and the Camden High Community Committees to get the new Camden High School campus to include design features honoring the history and legacy of Camden High School, including a tower along the Park Boulevard side of the building, and a room or wall with mementos from the century-old building. The District is committed to working with alumni and the community to make sure the new Camden High pays tribute to the rich history of the Castle on the Hill.

How can alumni and residents get involved in the preservation and celebration of the building’s history?

To receive periodic updates about the Camden High School renovation plan, alumni can register interest here. Separate from the District, there is also a Camden High alumni association on Facebook.

Who is ultimately responsible for the new building’s successful completion?
Approved by the Schools Development Authority board, the reconstruction of Camden High School is a project funded and managed by the State. Mayor Redd and Superintendent Rouhanifard have consistently advocated for the funding and commitment to give Camden students access to a 21st-century facility. We will continue to support, guide, and lobby the Schools Development Authority until students attend a new Camden High School in fall 2021.

Where is the money coming from? How do we know it won’t “disappear”?
On October 5, 2016, the Schools Development Authority’s Board of Directors approved a $133 million commitment to reconstruct Camden High School. This is further than the City’s ever gotten in securing a State commitment to restore The High, and the Mayor’s Office and District will continue to push to make sure reconstruction takes place.

How can I stay informed about the preservation and celebration of the building’s history?

You can sign up here to receive periodic updates about the Camden High School renovation plan.

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