DEMAREST, N.J. — Students at Northern Valley Regional High Schools in Demarest and Old Tappan will soon be taking college-level courses such as economics, entrepreneurship, trigonometry and constitutional law in school.
It's all part of Northern Valley School District's (NVSD) new "Career Pathways" program, in which students can begin to explore their potential majors and earn college credit while still in high school.
"We want to help kids discover their areas of interest before they get to college and give them the advantages that students in the highest achieving schools have," NVSD Schools Supt. Geoffrey Gordon told Daily Voice.
Making it possible was a $11.7 million referendum approved by district voters earlier this month.
Of the 2,300 NVSD high school students, nearly 75 percent have opted to enroll in college classes, Gordon added.
To make the program work, the district has entered into partnerships with New Jersey Institute of Technology, Bergen County Community College and Seton Hall University to certify half of each high school's teachers as adjuncts, qualified to teach 150 different college-level courses to students, Gordon explained.
Freshmen through seniors can opt to dual enroll in different career pathways — including Business, Law & Government, Fine, Practical, & Performing Arts, Human Services, and S.T.E.M. — at a cost of $75 per credit. Most full-year classes are worth three credits. Students can take up to 60 credits while in school.
"Kids can take these college-level courses for less than ten cents on the dollar and that will really help families," Gordon said.
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