Bergen County Academies in Hackensack, New Jersey Review

The Bergen County Academies offers students a unique high school experience that combines comprehensive academics with technical and professional courses. Here students are encouraged to choose an academy concentration based on their preferred career choice.

In this article, we’ll explore the history of Bergen County Academies, why you should attend Bergen County Academies, the programs offered and admission requirements, what student life is like at Bergen County, the financial involvements, and a whole lot more. Carefully read through!

About Bergen County Academies

Bergen County Academies (BCA) is a free-of-charge public secondary school, which offers ninth through 12th grade pupils from Bergen County, New Jersey. The institution is located in Hackensack, New Jersey. Dr. John Grieco, the founder of the Englewood Academies, created it in 1991.

There are many opportunities for a student in one academy to interact with students from another. Students participate in interdisciplinary and class-wide projects as they take math, humanities, and world language courses together.

Students can take part in independent study, numerous academic and skills competitions, cultural travel, and college residency experiences. Sports programs and after school activities supplement Academies life.

Finally, to connect with the world of work, each student participates in an internship for academic credit during his or her senior year.

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Academies At Bergen County

Currently, the school has seven academies:

1. Academy for the Advancement of Science and Technology (AAST)

Students at AAST pursue several years of chemistry and physics while also completing AAST-specific coursework in chemical engineering, organic chemistry, and contemporary physics.

AAST graduates are equipped to pursue further education in a variety of scientific fields. The program necessitates the completion of AP Chemistry.

Students are encouraged to use the state-of-the-art facilities on campus to develop innovative answers to current research problems throughout the program.

2. Academy for Business and Finance (ABF)

Business, finance, marketing, and economics are all required courses for ABF students.

The global business environment, management, marketing, finance, economics, and entrepreneurship are just a few of the subjects covered in a variety of high-level core courses. The emphasis on a global viewpoint has been embraced by ABF.

The integration of the International Baccalaureate curriculum into an already difficult course of study is the driving factor behind this global component.


3. Academy for Culinary Arts and Hospitality Administration (ACAHA)

Culinary arts and restaurant/hospitality management are two subjects that students at the Academy for Culinary Arts and Hospitality Administration are passionate about.

An honors-level core curriculum, reinforced by elective opportunities in all aspects of food preparation, facility management, customer service, and more, prepares ACAHA students for study in any field.

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4. Academy for Engineering and Design Technology (AEDT)

The engineering sciences studied by AEDT students include design technology, computer science, manufacturing, electronics, and biomedical engineering.

By concentrating on broad engineering courses, AEDT prepares students for admittance into college engineering programs.

Students in this institution specialized in the field of design and engineering, focusing on skills relevant to any program of engineering. Examples of projects include product development, architectural and civil design, and robot competitions.

5. Academy for Medical Science Technology (AMST)

The AMST curriculum enables students to understand the basic sciences in a comprehensive fashion and presents a systems-based approach to medicine.

Transdisciplinary projects help students acquire abilities in teamwork and communication.

Students attend specialist courses in the field of medical sciences, biotechnology, medical subjects, anatomy, physiology, and AP science in addition to higher-level subjects in science.

Academy for Technology and Computer Science (ATCS); Programming, computer architecture, data structures and algorithms, and program analysis are all covered in ATCS.

Even as technology advances, the software is constructed around core concepts that will never go out of style.

BCA students strengthen their computing skills through projects and electives that include processor design, web application development, robotics, computer security, and mechatronics, among others.

6. Academy for Visual and Performing Arts (AVPA)

Those who learn at AVPA Theatre go through a rigorous training program aimed at those who want to pursue a college degree in theatre or cinema that would lead to a position in the entertainment industry.

Among the primary disciplines are acting, dancing, voice and speech, musical theatre, theatre history, theatrical design, dramatic writing, and directing. Students are exposed to a variety of ways that are most useful to their own growth.

AVPA Visual students learn the fundamentals of the visual arts by immersing themselves in a curriculum that emphasizes classic art and design skills and concepts while embracing new technology.

Graphic and web design, illustration, photography, animation/video, game design, package design, virtual reality, traditional/fine arts, and art history are just a few of the options open to this degree’s students.

While AVPA Music students have exceptional musical talent and are among the best musicians in their areas. Woodwind, brass, string, and percussion instruments are taught to students.

Harmonic analysis, counterpoint, voice leading, and ear training are among the topics they learn in college-level music theory. Students also study the most up-to-date technology and composition approaches in electronic music synthesis, using cutting-edge software.

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7. Academy for Technology and Computer Science (ATCS)

This program is ideal for students with a passion for computers and programming. The Academy for Technology and Computer Science offers a curriculum that gives students a solid foundation in core computer science concepts.

It also gives hands-on experience with a wide range of programming skills and paradigms, and a focus on applying programming to real-world problems.

ATCS students gain a solid foundation in programming, computer architecture, software engineering practices, data structures and algorithms, computation theory, and program analysis.

Bergen County Academies Rankings

Niche selected BCA in 2021 as America’s top public secondary school. BCA has also been designated one of The Washington Post’s 23 high schools in the U.S.

BCA school has a National Blue Ribbon, is a Member of the National STEM Schools Consortium, the New Jersey Education Department’s Model School in the Arts, with eleven Regeneron Science Talent Search Scholars, two of which are Finalists.

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Why Attend Bergen County Academies?

Bergen County Academies offers seven specialized high school programs, each with a particular focus on a certain career path. BCA graduates are accepted to a variety of universities and colleges around the country and overseas.

A student from one academy can interact with students from other academies in a variety of ways. While taking math, humanities, and global language classes together, students participate in multidisciplinary and class-wide projects.

Independent study, many academic and talent competitions, cultural travel, and college residential experiences are all available to students.

Academy life is supplemented by sports programs and after-school activities. Finally, each student participates in an internship for academic credit during his or her senior year to connect with the working world.

Where Is The Bergen County Academies Located?

200 Hackensack Avenue Hackensack, Bergen County, New Jersey 07601 United States

How Many Students Try Out For Bergen County Academies?

In October 2020, Niche ranked the school as the first public high school in the nation, the first magnet school, the secondary school number three, the secondary high School number fifth, the secondary school number seven, and the secondary school STEM number seven (all for America).

BCA  has won all these categories at the level of the state, county, and New York City, excluding the STEM School which he has linked the NJ and NYC regions to second place, and college preparation which is tied with the NYC area for second place.

Bergen County Academies had the highest graduation rate and SAT scores in the state of New Jersey during the 2019-2020 school year. As a result, around 1600 applications are received each year by the private high school.

The final stage of the admissions process before the final acceptance decision is the interview for prospective students. BCA typically only requests interviews from around 40 percent of applicants.

How Hard Is It To Get Into Bergen Academies?

By late February, 8th graders must visit an open house, apply, submit teacher recommendation letters, and take the NJ admission exam at Bergen County Academies.

Bergen County Academies, the hardest of the schools to get into, have a cap on the number of students admitted from each Bergen County town.

What Is The Acceptance Rate For Bergen County Academies?

That is, review the percentage of applicants that get into Bergen County Academies.

BCA has around a 15% admission rate for the class of 2024.

SOURCE: BCA_School_Profile

Is Bergen County Academies A Good School?

Yes. You could pursue your love in science, art, computers, music, theater, food, design, or finance—BCA programs will allow you to do so while also preparing you for the academic challenges of college.

You are not limited to studying a single topic; you may supplement your studies with electives and groups that cross academy boundaries.

Students receive an excellent academic foundation that equips them for postsecondary study in any field of their choice.

How Much Does Bergen County Academies cost?

Bergen County Academies (BCA) is a public high school that does not charge tuition.

What Are The Admission Requirements For Bergen County Academies?

Here’s a pictorial guide on how to get into bergen county academies;

SOURCE: BCA_GuideToApply

If you want to apply, you must be in the eighth grade by September 2020. Regardless of where you attend school, your principal home must be in Bergen County, NJ at the time of application. If approved, you would start 9th grade in September 2024.

You must first register online with a username, password, and state student ID (SID/NJ Smart-ID*) to begin the application process.

We suggest that you use Internet Explorer (IE) or Firefox as your browser. Allow pop-ups (see the “Privacy and Security” settings of your browser).

Students have to create a username and password in order to apply. For additional information, visit

You will be able to access the application website using your username and password. You must use a personal e-mail address that you check on a regular basis.

If BCA has any information or questions for you throughout the admissions process, you will be notified via this e-mail. After registering, you may log in using your already-created username and password.

There are eight steps to the online application.

In order for the application to be legitimate, all stages must be completed by Monday, December 13, 2024.

After you’ve registered, click “Apply Now” to start the application process.

Here are a few guidelines you should heed to:

  • Every kid in New Jersey who attends a public school is issued a SID/NJ Smart ID. Please inquire with your guidance counselor.
  • Candidates who attend a private school or a school located outside of New Jersey should consult the User Manual for guidelines.
  • This online checklist walks you through the stages of submitting your application. The “X” will turn into a checkmark when each step is finished. By clicking the “Edit” box, you may make adjustments. To complete your application, we recommend that you use Mozilla Firefox as your browser. This browser is compatible with all aspects of the application, including the upload and viewing of photographs (Step 5).

Step 1: Begin the application process

Fill up your personal details.

Step 2: Choose a Campus

You can apply to Bergen County Academies in Hackensack and/or Bergen County Technical High School in Teterboro using this. For both schools, you may have a first and second preference.

The majority of pupils get admitted into the school of their first choice. The entrance exam is REQUIRED in order for a student’s application to be considered complete.

Students applying to Bergen County Academies and/or Bergen County Technical High School, Teterboro, shall take an admissions test online on January 8th or 9th, 2024. After the application deadline, the candidate will get an email with more information.

Step 3: You must compose an essay

Tell BCA about yourself and why you want to attend your preferred academy in 400 words or fewer. If you have any activities or awards that you would want to share with the Board, please do so in 100 words or fewer inside the same box.

Step 4: Fill up the Reference Names and Email Addresses

Provide your teachers’ names and e-mail addresses that will provide their math, English, and science lessons with their endorsement.

You should have had English and Science professors in grades 7 or 8. In grade 8, your Math teacher should be teaching you.

Even if you are applying to both campuses, you just need one set of Recommendation Forms.

You do not need to contact BCA to ask whether or not your transcript and recommendations have been received from your school; your school will be contacted directly if more information is required.

Step 5: Upload your photo (jpg only)

Upload one student headshot (passport size 2”x 2”, 5MB). This information will be used to identify you during the admissions exam and interview.

Step 6: Go through your application

Examine your application to ensure that all procedures have been completed to your satisfaction.

Step 7: Submit

After you’ve submitted your application, you will receive an e-mail with a six-digit validation number and instructions on how to register for your admission exam.

Make a note of your validation number and bring it with you to your admission exam. Please check your spam/junk inbox if you did not get this e-mail.

Step 8: Select “Open for Editing” from the drop-down menu

If you want to make changes to your application after it’s been submitted, you can do so now. Remember to save your changes by returning to Step 6. If you don’t resubmit each time you open for editing, your validation number will expire.

Step 9: Print your Transcript, Letters of Recommendation, and Case Manager Form (if applicable)

By the December 13 application deadline, you must have completed all forms and returned them to your counselor and professors. Instructions for the Admissions Test can be printed.

What Is Student Life Like At Bergen County Academies?

IGS (Informational Gathering Session) begins at 8:00 a.m. on a normal school day. The duration of the school day is a significant distinction between the Academies and regular schools. School finishes at 4:10 p.m., but if you engage in sports, your day may end much later.

Modules, are about 17 minutes long and are used in academy classes. Classes are usually made up of two or three modifications.

Each day’s schedule is unique: Monday schedules are similar to Thursday schedules, while Tuesday schedules are comparable to Friday schedules.

Wednesdays are special. Except for seniors who have internships, all students complete a 6-module program called Projects.

Each student has a certain number of free modules. This is when there are no classes planned. During their free minutes, they may opt to do their schoolwork, meet with project partners, or study with friends.

The remaining hour of the day is reserved for electives or clubs on Wednesdays. Instead of taking an elective, students might engage in a sport.

Students may also remain late at school to work on a group project or to use materials exclusively available at school and then catch a late bus at 6.30 am

FAQs on Bergen County Academies

Why can I not use the work e-mail address of my parent/ guardian or my school e-mail address as my primary e-mail address?

The major mode of communication between the Admissions Department and the applicants and their families is via e-mail. Many institutions and companies have firewalls in place that prevent contact from outside sources.

This implies that we may never get e-mails sent from such addresses. Similarly, if you send our Admissions e-mails to a school or corporate e-mail account, you may not get them.

To avoid missing information, the applicant’s primary e-mail address must be a personal e-mail account that is checked regularly. Email from school is not permitted.

Does Bergen County accept students with learning disabilities?

Yes. Academic assistance, speech, language, and counseling services are offered to students with disabilities in line with their Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) or Section 504 Plans.

Please refer to the Case Manager form (Step 9/Print Forms) to offer appropriate accommodations for the admission test. If you’ve already had a 504 or IEP and need help choosing an academy, please contact our School Social Worker, Mr. Jon Bercovici, at

We do not live in Bergen County. Can my daughter apply?

No, the child’s primary residence must be in Bergen County, and the applicant must be registered in the primary residence’s school district.

Prior to taking the admissions test, an applicant attending a private school outside of Bergen County will be required to present proof of domicile.

Do the admission criteria for the different academies vary?

For all academies, the qualifications are the same. The audition or portfolio of the student is also a priority at the Academy for Visual and Performing Arts.

My son is home-schooled. How will you evaluate him?

Students who are homeschooled are treated equally to other students. They must submit standardized test scores from each of their middle school years, as well as reference letters from non-family teachers, and they must take the entrance exam.

How will I know if my daughter’s school has sent all documentation including the school transcript, report cards, teacher recommendations, and standardized test scores?

It is the responsibility of the student to complete and submit the online application as well as hand in forms such as the School Transcript, three Teacher Recommendations, and the Case Manager Form (if applicable) to the proper persons at their school. There is no need to contact us to check on the status of a student’s folder.


Bergen County Academies has been in operation for quite some time. It was established in 1991.

The Bergen County Academies is sometimes referred to as the Bergen Academies or the Academies because of its seven academic and professional divisions.

It is a tuition-free public magnet high school in Hackensack, New Jersey that educates Bergen County students in grades nine through twelfth.

Bergen County Academies provides students with a one-of-a-kind high school experience that includes comprehensive academic, technical, and professional courses.

Students are encouraged to select an academy emphasis depending on their interests rather than their eventual job goals.


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