Statement of Commissioner Frank Edelblut: Joint Legislative Fiscal Committee denies 120 NH students education choice - Granite Grok

Statement of Commissioner Frank Edelblut: Joint Legislative Fiscal Committee denies 120 NH students education choice

Frank Edelblut3

July 10, 2020

Contact: Grant Bosse
(603) 271-0448 office
(603) 513-3030 cell

Statement of Commissioner Frank Edelblut

CONCORD- Following today’s party-line vote of the Joint Legislative Fiscal Committee to keep a $46 million charter school replication grant on the table, Education Commissioner Frank Edelblut issued the following statement:

“I remain disappointed that partisanship has left New Hampshire charter schools and their students in limbo. The Northeast Woodland Chartered Public School is seeking start-up funds under a federal grant in order to educate 120 students who wish to attend this fall. Because of the party-line vote of the Fiscal Committee, these vital funds remain out of reach, and 120 New Hampshire students may not be able to pursue their best educational path.”


Attachment: Letter from Northeast Woodland Chartered Public School to Joint Legislative Fiscal Committee:

July 9, 2020
Joint Fiscal Committee NH State Legislature

Dear Honorable Members of the Fiscal Committee,

As you prepare to again consider acceptance of the Federal Charter School Startup Grant funds tomorrow, I wanted to provide an update on where Northeast Woodland Chartered Public School currently stands. When the federal startup funds were originally on the agenda for acceptance, Northeast Woodland had not yet officially received its charter from the Board of Education. Our charter was officially granted in March of this year and we are preparing to open in September of this year. We need your help to ensure that happens.

About Northeast Woodland:

We are the first chartered public school to successfully complete the updated, more- rigorous charter school application process and were commended by the Board of Education for our model application.

With almost two months remaining before opening day, we have already received 120 completed student applications for enrollment from early childhood through seventh grade (our year one cap is 143, including early childhood).

We have hired a Harvard educated, nationally recognized educator with both Waldorf and traditional public school experience as Head of School. She has packed up her family and relocated to New Hampshire specifically for this opportunity and is in the process of purchasing a home in Madison.

In addition to our Head of School, we have hired an excellent faculty of educators, some of whom have also relocated their families to New Hampshire specifically for the opportunity to teach at Northeast Woodland.

All told, Northeast Woodland is creating at least 18 new, high-quality jobs providing competitive pay and full health insurance benefits to teachers in a part of the state heavily impacted by COVID-19’s effect on the tourism economy.

Northeast Woodland is the first public Waldorf-inspired, outdoor education focused school of its kind in the northeastern United States. Our outdoor focus in particular works to develop the foundational skills needed to support the outdoor recreation economy of the Mount Washington Valley and northern New Hampshire.

Attached to this letter are photos showing the families of Northeast Woodland including why, in their own words, the educational opportunity provided by Northeast Woodland is so important to them.

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for taking the time to look through the photos as you get to know the Northeast Woodland community and why your acceptance of these funds is so important to so many New Hampshire families.

Respectfully submitted,

Northeast Woodland Chartered Public School

CC: Governor Chris Sununu
Senator Dan Feltes
Senator Jeb Bradley
Senator David Watters
Senator Jay Kahn
Senator Tom Sherman
Senator Martha Fuller Clark
Executive Councilor Michael Cryans
Executive Councilor Andru Volinsky
Executive Councilor Russell Prescott
Executive Councilor Ted Gatsas
Executive Councilor Debora Pignatelli
Commissioner Frank Edelblut