CRANFORD—The Cerebral Palsy League (CPL) of Cranford celebrated the opening of a new school facility on its Cranford campus Thursday with a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by education and government officials representing a collective commitment to enhanced learning programs for children with disabilities. The CPL operates the Jardine Academy, a specialized school serving children with multiple disabilities.
The new facility provides students with multiple disabilities from age 3 to 21 with a continuum of educational services in an enhanced learning environment, including state-of-the-art technology and mobility training programs, modernized classrooms and an expanded therapy suite.
In addition, the new building will help reduce tuition costs by up to 10 percent for 27 school districts in four counties that send students to the CPL through improved economies of scale and utilization of resources. The facility – which was built on schedule and on budget – allowed the CPL to combine the operations of its Cranford and Union campuses into one location.
“With school districts across the state facing budgets cuts and greater voter scrutiny, it is essential for districts to have options that allow them to meet their obligations to students with disabilities,” said Debra Wolfel, executive director of the CPL. “This new facility allows us to not only provide education and care in a cutting-edge, state-of-the-art environment but also to offer school districts reduced tuition costs. Our savings are passed on to every school district partnering with us.”
The new facility incorporates modern and practical resources to facilitate and encourage specialized learning. These resources include centers for assistive technology; performing arts with a fully accessible stage; a fitness center for physically challenged students; a daily living model training apartment; and a school store modeled to support the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Superior architectural design allows each of these areas to simulate a “Main Street” environment and real life experiences.
Attending the ribbon-cutting ceremony were Sen. Tom Kean; Cranford Mayor David Robinson; Union County Freeholder Bette Jane Kowalski; Assemblywoman Nancy Munoz; and Glenn Mortimer, representing the office of U.S. Rep. Leonard Lance.
“The collective support the Cerebral Palsy League and Jardine Academy receive from local and state representatives of both the education and government arena is not only very gratifying to us as a school but also reflects the importance of continually advancing learning techniques that allow children and young adults with disabilities to lead more fulfilling lives,” Wolfel said.
“We believe it is imperative that education principles and processes advance. Our students and their families deserve no less. This new facility allows us to provide the education and care they deserve and to which we are committed.”
The Jardine Academy is approved by the New Jersey Department of Education and maintains Middle States Accreditation. The academy is dedicated as a Model Site of MOVE® (Mobility Opportunities Via Education), the internationally renowned mobility program for children and adults with physical disabilities, and is the only school in New Jersey that has been recognized by MOVE International for its excellence in the incorporation of MOVE principles.
Attending the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new school facility at the Cerebral Palsy League’s Jardine Academy in Cranford were (from left): Greg Reddington of REDCO Engineering; Barry Bullis, school principal; Debra Wolfel, executive director of the Cerebral Palsy League; Cranford Mayor David Robinson; Se. Tom Kean; Union County Freeholder Bette Jane Kowalski; and Assemblywoman Nancy Munoz.
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