PARAMUS, NJ – On Tuesday, April 18, the Bergen County Technical School District held a groundbreaking ceremony to mark the beginning of construction for a new Career and Technical Education School at their Paramus Campus.
The new Career and Technical Education (CTE) school will bridge the gap between high school and postsecondary plans, providing a versatile curriculum that prepares students for their next step, whether it is a trade apprenticeship program, a two-year college, or four-year college. CTE focuses on academic, employability, and technical skills used in a specific occupation. The new Bergen County CTE School, will feature programs tailored to address shortages in high-demand fields that will help our nation remain competitive in a 21st century global economy including Fabrication and Design, Logistics, and Dental Science.
Construction for the school is being funded largely thanks to 2021 New Jersey Department of Education Securing Our Children's Future Grant. Under the terms of the grant, the State Department of Education will fund 75% of the total project with the County providing the additional 25%. The Bergen County Technical School District received $25,875,000 from the Department of Education for the new CTE School while the County of Bergen is providing the additional $8,625,000.
"This new school will be a milestone project for our Technical School District and the County of Bergen," said County Executive Jim Tedesco. "As we look to the future of what education can and should be, it is critical to anticipate the needs not just in education, but in the workforce. This new career technical education school supports alternative paths and builds a more inclusive education system that has something for every single student, all while helping ensure Bergen County remains competitive in the 21st-century global economy.”
“The Board of Education and school administration are grateful to all the county officials for supporting the addition of three new programs, which will allow BCTS to meet the increased demand for CTE programs by county residents,” said Dr. Howard Lerner, Superintendent of the Bergen County Technical School District. “These new programs, which will focus on Dental Assisting, Design and Fabrication, and Supply Chain Management, will provide students the requisite academic and technical skills to pursue postsecondary/technical education, apprenticeship programs, or immediate entry into the workforce upon graduation.”
“The Career and Technical Education School will provide students with diverse technical tools and career paths – all essential to unlocking our future workforce's full potential while meeting the labor needs of New Jersey’s evolving industries. The nearly $26M grant from the state is a testament to the profound importance of this project,” said Assemblywoman Lisa Swain. “By continuing to invest in vocational education, New Jersey is investing in the success of our students. As a legislator and longtime Bergen County resident, I’m confident this new CTE school will soon become a cornerstone of the Bergen County community and a vital educational resource for future generations."
"The Career and Technical Education School will provide hands-on training and experience for those coming out of high school seeking opportunities to make a good living," said Commissioner Chairman Tom Sullivan. "These cutting-edge programs can make the world of a difference to our students in Bergen County, thanks to our forward-thinking administrators and educators."
The ceremony was attended by state and county officials including Assemblywoman Lisa Swain, County Executive Jim Tedesco, and representatives from the Board of County Commissioners. The school is set to open in 2025 and will support the capacity for about 260 students.