July 14, 2021
Contact: Edye Maier (609) 858-2909

New Jersey Schools Development Authority Breaks Ground for New Charles and Anna Booker School in Plainfield

New Middle School-Paterson

Plainfield, NJ – The New Jersey Schools Development Authority (SDA) joined Plainfield School District officials, local officials and the Booker family today to break ground for the new Charles and Anna Booker School.

“As we celebrate the groundbreaking for this important project, SDA continues to deliver on its commitment to providing high-quality educational facilities that best meet the needs of the students of Plainfield and districts throughout the State,” said SDA CEO Manuel Da Silva. “This new school will serve as a lasting legacy of Charles and Anna Booker, reminding generations of Plainfield students of their activism and commitment to the education of Plainfield students.”

The new, three-story facility of approximately 120,000 square-feet is designed to educate approximately 840 Kindergarten to fifth grade students. The new school will include 41 classrooms, an art room, a vocal/music room, an instrumental lesson room, a technology lab, a science demo room, a computer lab, a gymnasium, a cafeteria, a media center, a playground, and a basketball court. The facility is anticipated to open to students in September 2022.

“We believe our students and teachers deserve to learn and teach in state-of-the-art facilities suited with the latest technology,” said Superintendent Dr. Diana Mitchell. “I am extremely proud of the Plainfield Board of Education for voting to name our new school after Plainfield’s Hidden Figures Charles and Anna Booker; it is extremely important for schools to be reflective of their community.”

The Charles and Anna Booker School was named by the Plainfield BOE in honor of the longtime civil rights activists. In 1965, they won a legal case, Booker v. Board of Education of City of Plainfield, to end segregation in Plainfield schools. Mr. and Mrs. Booker were born and raised in the City of Plainfield. They have been involved in community organizing and advocating in the City of Plainfield their entire lives. Mrs. Booker was a teacher in Plainfield when the Plainfield Public School District began hiring African American teachers. Mrs. Booker retired after serving 20 years in the Plainfield School District.

EPIC Management, Inc. was awarded a $45 million design-build contract for the design and construction of the new school. As part of the design-build contract, EPIC Management is working with DMR Architects on the design. Cambridge Construction Management is managing the project. The total estimated project cost is $60 million.

Once completed, the school will be the third Capital Project built by the SDA in Plainfield since the inception of the school construction program. The SDA previously invested more than $83 million in completed projects in the Plainfield School District.

About the New Jersey Schools Development Authority

The SDA is the State agency responsible for fully funding and managing the new construction, modernization and renovation of school facilities projects in 31 SDA Districts. Its current portfolio of active projects is valued at approximately $2 billion – including the Capital Project portfolio, emergent projects and Regular Operating District grants. Since the program’s inception, the SDA has provided funding for and management oversight of more than 850 completed school facilities projects in SDA Districts and has executed more than 5,400 grants for Regular Operating Districts throughout the State of New Jersey. For more information about the SDA, please visit our website at: or follow us on social media at: Facebook; Instagram; LinkedIn; or Twitter.