This week, Assemblyman Gary Schaer, Agudath Israel New Jersey, and the New Jersey Catholic Conference worked together to protect child care centers operated as part of a non-public school. A bill that was scheduled for a hearing before the Assembly education committee would have mandated child care centers that are part of a private school to undergo additional licensing requirements that are not required of similar centers which are part of a public school. Agudath Israel objected to the fact that the bill singled out non-public schools with these new requirements.
There are dozens of nonpublic schools throughout New Jersey that have a child care center as part of their school and these additional requirements would jeopardize their ability to exist. In addition to the fact that the bill would have discriminated against the non-public school community as public schools are not required to have a license, when we alerted several school throughout the state that have a child care center about the proposed legislation we were told that if they would need to undergo these requirements they would probably be forced to close down the child care center.
We reached out to Assemblyman Gary Schaer for assistance to amend the bill and eliminate the section mandating these requirements. Assemblyman Schaer and his chief of staff, Justin Braz, worked together with Agudath Israel and the Catholic Conference, to successfully have the bill amended.
We are very grateful to Assemblyman Schaer and his staff for their efforts, as well as to the sponsors of the bill, Assemblymen Garcia and Mukherji and to Assemblyman Diegnan, chairman of the education committee, for their willingness to amend the bill and their concern with this important matter.