Elizabeth Public Schools Celebrate the Opening of
Juan Pablo Duarte-José Julián Martí School No. 28
On Tuesday, January 27, 2009, at 7:00 p.m.,
the Elizabeth Board of Education will
formally dedicate the district’s newly
opened, state-of-the-art Juan Pablo Duarte-
José Julián Martí School No. 28. The
ceremony will be held in the auditorium and
will be attended by school and district
representative, as well as local, county and
The namesake of School No. 28, Juan Pablo
Duarte, known as the “Father of Dominican
Independence,” and José Julián Martí, a
Cuban writer and philosopher, are well
respected patriots in the Dominican and Cuban communities, who dedicated their lives to
promoting freedom and independence in their respective countries.
Pablo Muñoz, Superintendent of Schools, noted, “Juan Pablo Duarte-José Julián Martí is a fitting
name for the school because of their lessons of leadership and community service. They serve as
an example to everyone at School No. 28 that through dedication, commitment and unity we can
achieve our mission to be one of the best school systems in the State of New Jersey.”
The ceremony will feature keynote speakers Bienvenido Lara Flores, Coordinator of the
Dominican Community Foundation and Dr. Orlando Edreira, Chairman of the Department of
Foreign Languages, Literature and Culture at Kean University. Flores dedicates his efforts to the
advancement and cultural preservation of the Dominican community. He has worked on the
documentary, “Duarte, Life and Thought” and is very knowledgeable of Duarte’s history and
legacy. Dr. Edreira is a life-long educator who has served for numerous boards and
organizations including the Elizabeth Board of Education, New Jersey State Board of Education,
Cuban-American Association of New Jersey and the Columbia University Hispanic Institute.
Dr. Edreira, a Cuban American, takes great pride in his community and cultural heritage. He
will speak on behalf of Martí, a celebrated Cuban patriot.
Highlights of the ceremony will include the playing of the Dominican and Cuban National
Anthems, performances by the school chorus, cultural foods, and tours of the facility. School
No. 28 boasts a large cafetorium, combining stage with food service facilities; a major size
gymnasium with high-tech sound system for special athletic activities; classrooms equipped with
Smart Boards (white boards linked to computers for specialized instruction) and a media center.
“Both Juan Pablo Duarte and José Julián Martí devoted themselves to achieving freedom for
their compatriots and were very passionate about their heritage. In such a diverse school district,
the lessons of unity and honoring all heritages are very important and I strongly believe that
honoring these two men with this dedication helps deliver that lesson,” said Board Member
Pastor Raúl Burgos.
Elizabeth Board of Education President, Francisco González believes “Duarte and Martí serve as
an example to everyone at School No. 28 to unite together and perform acts that will benefit the
entire school community.”
“This is in recognition of these heroes and those that have continued to defend democracy and
have given their life for democracy in the Caribbean,” said Board Member, Rafael J. Fajardo.