JACKSON - The Jackson zoning board has rejected a proposal to allow an all-girls Orthodox Jewish high school to be built on residential property there.

More than nine months of debate and four public meetings about "Oros Bais Yaakov" led to Wednesday's meeting.

The controversial proposal from a Lakewood school to build a private all-girls Orthodox Jewish school on Cross Street in Jackson has spurred questions about traffic, congestion and zoning.

Many against the proposal want homes built on the property instead.

"I'm very, very happy," says Barbara Orsini, of Jackson. "The zoning board saw the law and they gave their decision based strictly on zoning laws."

The Lakewood group says the school would have benefited the community and would have provided a quality education for 400 girls. It isn't ruling out further action. "It's a democratic process," says Ray Shea, an attorney for Oros Bais Yaakov. "It played out, not to our satisfaction. We'll take an appeal under advisement."

Up to 1,000 people have attended previous meetings.