FA School Performance Ranks in Top Third of NJ Schools

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Foundation Academy ranked higher than most schools statewide on the 2023 New Jersey School Performance Report published April 3, making up more than half of its pandemic learning loss in just one academic year to rank in the 69th percentile.

"At Foundation Academies, we are intentional about excellence," said CEO Sheria McRae. "This achievement is not just a number—it's a reflection of our shared vision, determination, and unwavering belief that our scholars can and will achieve.

"We are celebrating," Mrs. McRae said. "But we also are continuing to provide more resources, inspire greatness, and make a lasting impact in the lives of our scholars."

Like nearly every school, Foundation Academies has been challenged by the pandemic. Prolonged remote learning, and a lack of resources in urban communities resulted in learning loss that pushed FA school performance from the 92nd percentile in 2019 to 30th in 2021-22.

In 2022-23, FA soared to the 69th percentile -- making up more than half the pandemic loss in just one academic year. FA showed the most improvement among charter schools in Mercer County, and ranked sixth among the most improved charter schools statewide.

School performance rankings are determined by factors including Academic Proficiency, Academic Growth, Chronic Absenteeism, English Language Learners' Performance on the ACCESS assessment, and Graduation Rate.

To climb back from the pandemic's disproportionate toll on scholars, FA continuously assesses whether scholars are meeting benchmarks for achievement and tailors our teaching to meet their needs.

FA provides high-dosage tutoring, and summer programs to accelerate learning and prevent learning loss. FA scholars spend more time learning, with a longer school year and extended instructional day. And families are active partners with teachers to support scholar achievement.

Chief Academic Officer Natasia Cooper credits the rise to a schoolwide focus on excellence.

"This remarkable progress is a testament to our 'classroom superheroes' and their determination to equip our scholars to excel," Ms. Cooper said. "Even beyond the classroom, our entire staff -- from the facilities team to the business office -- has been focused on empowering our scholars to take flight, and that’s exactly what they are doing."

Foundation Academies is Mercer County's only K-12 public charter school, educating more than 1,000 scholars living in Trenton with more than 90% receiving free and reduced-price school meals. FA's graduation rate exceeds the NJ state average and college acceptance is near 100%.

Michelle Ruess