We are a group of involved residents from the Cranford community who have come together for one reason — to be better informed about the decisions being made that affect the future of our town. This site is available for Cranford citizens as a reference relating to Cranford development. We do not support the solicitation of money nor are affiliated with any political party or candidate for elected office.
Frank Krause in his letter to the Westfield Leader ON 3/1 (link below) expresses his frustration about the lack of public input and discourse at the DMC Strategic Plan one-sided presentation. Residents were asked to place dots on DMC ideas to express themselves. Just the continuance of the lack of transparency, accountability and citizen input with the present Cranford Township administration.
There are eight schools in the Cranford Public School System. Bloomingdale Avenue School that houses 249 students in grades K-2, Brookside Place School that houses 426 students in grades K-5, Walnut Avenue School that houses 305 students in grades PreK-2, Livingston Avenue School that houses 261 students in grades 3-5 are all neighborhood elementary schools. Orange Avenue School and Hillside Avenue School also house elementary students in grades 3-5 and K-5, respectively, and also house the districts two middle schools with students in grades 6-8 with their total student population being 737 and 707, respectively. Cranford High School houses 1140 students in grades 9-12. In addition, Lincoln Avenue School is home to an alternative elementary, middle and high school program housing 79 students.
The most recent demographic study done in 2009 only noted numbers for two of the three large development projects that are under development, approved or in the process of seeking approvals in our community. Those developments were the Riverfront and Birchwood. Furthermore, although the projected numbers were noted for both, only the figures for the Riverfront were included in the actual counts that were provided for the long term projections because the Birchwood project was in litigation at the time the report was written. The report projected that 19 students would enter the district's schools as a result of the Riverfront project and that the overall student population would decline by approximately 60 students by the 2014-2015 school year. This report would like to note that the demographic study's numbers indicated that the student population for the school year 2011-2012 would be 3855 and as of January 2012 the student population is 3900.
An extreme concern for the school district and the community is the Birchwood Development proposal. If as many as 419 units are built, it is expected that approximately 300 additional children of school age would potentially be enrolled in our schools. This number of students exceeds, or closely matches, the total population of three of our neighborhood schools. The number of classrooms that could be needed to educate these students property is estimated to be least 12, and the number of teachers and aides, support staff and administrative personnel, including those in specialty areas would be at least 25. In essence, the implications of this development would require the equivalent of one additional neighborhood school to be built.
As was mentioned previously, the third large development project, 555 South Avenue East, was not included in a demographic study and therefore the impact cannot be objectively included.