The primary goal of NJ Gear Up is to increase the number of low-income students who are prepared to enter and succeed in postsecondary education. Through programs at seven higher education partner institutions, students in Grades 6-12 are provided with after-school and Saturday tutoring, summer programs, mentoring, counseling, test preparation, information about financial aid and college visits.
In order to enhance these efforts, it is critical that the personnel in the targeted schools receive appropriate professional development that can support this primary goal and help to sustain the work of the partner institutions.
The Gear Up Academy will provide professional development opportunities for school district personnel that will be available through real-time workshops, web-based activities, on-site support, and the promotion of professional learning communities among Gear Up districts. These activities will be developed, delivered, and evaluated by collaborative planning and monitoring among Academy participants and will create opportunities for educators in participating school districts to share their ideas with peers and colleagues, and ultimately improve their teaching practices and the education provided to all students.
The Gear Up Academy is a partnership between the Southern Regional Institute and ETTC (SRI&ETTC) and NJ Gear Up in the New Jersey Department of Higher Education.