Explore 2000, the first vocational middle school in New Jersey – which is a part of the Hudson County Schools of Technology – held their ribbon cutting ceremony in Jersey City yesterday.Â
HCST Superintendent Frank Gargiulo, also a North Bergen Commissioner, revealed that Explore 2000 actually started 20 years ago inside the Liberty Science Center, with just 24 students.
Hudson County Executive Tom DeGise revealed that he was initially against Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulopâ€™s plan to move the school from Montgomery Street to 9th Street, but they were eventually able to agree on a contingency plan.
Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto (D-32), a longtime supporter of vocational schools, expressed his satisfaction with the project.
Additionally, Fulop called Explore 2000 a positive addition to the Jersey City schools.
Jersey City Council President Rolando Lavarro, also the chairman of the Jersey City Redevelopment Agency, referred to the project as â€œthe cutting edge model of education.â€
School Principal Amy Lin-Rodriguez was delighted to be inside the new building, which will provide students the greatest â€œacademic freedom” possible.
Before the ribbon was cut, Sarah Masoud, a third year student at Explore, said the school has had a positive impact on her life.