Our History-A Matter of Justice
Link Community School was founded in 1969 by the Sisters of St. Dominic of Caldwell, New Jersey, in response to the Newark riots and the resulting devastation of the Central Ward community. The school was originally named “Project Link,” but adopted “Link Community School” in the 1990′s.
The non-denominational independent middle school was established to help rebuild the community by providing an exceptional educational opportunity for young people left in poverty. It was founded on the belief that small class settings combined with opportunities for creative expression would transform potential dropouts into community leaders.
Critical to achieving that goal was providing each child the freedom to develop intellectually and emotionally in a safe, structured learning community. Based on these convictions, Link has grown into a thriving scholarship-based independent school serving up to 128 seventh- and eighth-grade students.
View our short film, A Matter of Justice, to learn more about the history of Link and its impact on the youth of Newark.
Today, Link continues to fulfill its original purpose: to provide Newark adolescents, at a crucial time in their lives, an exceptional middle school experience aimed at ensuring their long-term success. Link’s approach continues to have great success in overcoming the significant challenges our urban youth face in achieving their potential.
Link currently enrolls approximately 128 seventh- and eighth-grade students, primarily of African-American descent, who come from low-income families. The school employs a unique balanced admissions policy, selecting a cross-section of students who are below grade level, at grade level, and above grade level, to ensure that Link positively impacts students of all academic abilities. Link provides a rigorous high school preparatory education in a setting that emphasizes community, challenges students academically and instills core values.
Link’s commitment to our students’ learning is reflected in our small classes of 16 or fewer students and student-to-teacher ratio of 9:1. The tremendous commitment of Link’s faculty, staff, parents and trustees to our students’ education underlies each student’s personal success.
To ensure that any family can afford Link’s education, we ask families to pay a nominal contribution for their child’s education. As a result, Link depends upon the generous support of our partners to make our students’ education possible. Gifts to Link provide approximately 85% of the school’s operating revenue.
Link’s success has been measured by the changed lives of over 2,000 students, many of whom have attributed their personal success to the life-changing experience they had at Link. Link places its graduates in some of the finest independent schools in the mid-Atlantic region as well as leading parochial and magnet high schools in the Newark area. 100% of the past 9 graduating classes (1999-2008) were accepted into quality private high schools of their choice.