Upper Deerfield Township School District (11-5300)

Upper Deerfield Township School District

(11-5300) Upper Deerfield Township School District

Dear Parents, Guardians, and Community Members:

Upper Deerfield Township School District works to provide a secure, compassionate, and engaging learning environment for all students in grades Pre-K through grade 8. Our three schools, Charles F. Seabrook which educates students in pre-K through grade 3, Elizabeth F. Moore which educates students in grades 4 and 5, and the Woodruff School which operates as a middle school providing instruction to students in grades 6 through 8, offer programs that are aligned to meet the needs of all learners. There is an excellent bond between the community and our school, confirming the commitment to educational excellence in the lives of all children.

Our staff of highly qualified teachers is committed to providing students with a developmentally appropriate program of instruction utilizing best practices in education. Each of our three schools' curricula is aligned to the Common Core State Standards in order to provide a better opportunity for improved student achievement. All three schools have their own Report Card. A review of previous Report Cards shows an increasing enrollment, moving our total student population to approximately 980 students. District students in Grades 9 through 12 can attend either Cumberland Regional High School or Cumberland County Technical Education Center for their high school education.

Once again in the classrooms this year is an across-the-board initiative to enhance student engagement and responsibility for learning. The staff is committed to finding ways to continue to improve student learning as evidenced by the work of several Professional Learning Communities (PLC) focusing on this topic. The Common Core has been embraced and is being implemented on all levels, supported by our ever expanding technology initiatives.

In grades three through eight students have individual chromebooks while the pre-k through grade two students are working with iPads in the classroom which will be expanded for individual iPads in the next year. There is access to computers in each building in a personal computer lab. The Common Core is supplemented by an opportunity to participate in Spanish in grades four through eight and all students are exposed to a rich experience in visual and performing arts and vocal and instrumental music.

Our community of Upper Deerfield has much to be proud of because of our three schools. The entire School District "family" maintains a great sense of pride in all that has been and continues to be accomplished in our district and our three schools both individually and collectively. Each school collaborates with all of its stakeholders to continue a tradition of providing our students with an excellent, challenging education in an environment promoting and cultivating lifelong skills. Our faculty, staff, and parents dedicate their time and energy to our schools in order to provide each student with a rewarding and enriching educational experience. The PTO is very involved in the successful operation of the District as they work tirelessly not only to support, but also enhance the District both financially and in helping provide assistance to staff in a variety of activities. The Board of Education continues to provide support of the District leadership and staff through support of programs, policy and governance.

Upper Deerfield Township Schools utilize a systems approach to achieve the vision established by the Board of Education. Our staff members set high academic and behavioral expectations for all students. Teachers engage in collaborative planning to create high student engagement and connect classroom learning and lessons to daily life. In our district's vision, the focus is on the students being at the core of our business to promote the development of the whole student while providing them with the knowledge, skills, and integrity to meet life's challenges, fulfill their needs and enable them to become productive in both the school and the community. All three schools of the Upper Deerfield Township School District are committed to creating a community of tolerance and acceptance that provides children the opportunity for extraordinary educational experiences. An inclusive environment is promoted in our district as we find a fitting place for every child.

The educational programs are designed to ensure all students are provided with opportunities to prepare themselves for the future of their choice. We recognize that not all children learn at the same rate. Accordingly, our three schools are structured to provide diverse learning environments which actively engage students in critical thinking, strategic planning, hands-on learning and problem solving. All students are active partners in their learning experience and equally accepting of their responsibility to challenge themselves to meet with success.

We continue to review our assessment data from the state and school assessments. Our results of these reviews indicate we are closing gaps and will continue our diligence in this area as we are encouraged due to gains in closing achievement gaps among the diverse student population and the amount of students who were on the cusp of meeting the expectations. Because our district holds firmly to our core belief that all students can achieve and all things are possible. Student achievement data is continuously analyzed within a Professional Learning Community culture. We are proud of our student attendance rate which, over the past three years is averaging 95% for all three schools. These rates and other positive indicators such as parent participation, strong PTO, rigorous curriculum, and student achievement noted in 100% student growth are important because consistency of instruction influences student performance.

Upper Deerfield Township School District provides our students with many extra-curricular activities, including clubs, intramurals, and musical performances. Our ACE Music/Theatre program once again was recognized at the Junior Theater Arts Festival by receiving an award for Excellence in Acting. Once again our program has been selected to pilot a Disney Show this year which marks the fourth consecutive year of this recognition.

As previously noted, we have passionate parental involvement, community and board support, professional development programs for the entire educational team, and high expectations among the staff are integral components of our district and are the keys to our success. The Upper Deerfield Township Board of Education's commitment to our students and community gives us the tenacity to remain focused on providing a distinguished education for all students. The pride of our district is substantiated by the rapport and collegiality among our students, parents, staff and administration. This type of atmosphere, coupled with the family involvement in children's learning is crucial to realizing a high quality of education. When school, home, and community work together, great things happen!

Our district has, and will continue to provide Upper Deerfield Township School children with schools of excellence while maintaining cost effectiveness and addressing the concerns of the community taxpayer. For more information on our district, policies, facilities, curriculum, staffing, Board of Education, and PTO meetings, I invite you to visit our website at www.udts.org.

Peter L. Koza, Ed.D., Superintendent/Principal