MONROE TOWNSHIP PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICT (15-3280)

MONROE TOWNSHIP PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICT

MONROE TWP

Monroe Township Public School District continues to grow in Southern New Jersey, serving 6,135 students in four elementary schools, one middle school and a comprehensive state-of-the-art high school. The mission of Monroe Township School District is to inspire and educate individuals to realize their dreams and fulfill their responsibilities to society. Our educational programs offer rigorous academics, innovative use of technology, creative exploration, and nurturing learning experiences.

Williamstown High School boasts a model Engineering Science Academy that is supported by partnerships with Rowan University, Drexel University, Rochester Institute of Technology and Rutgers University (Camden). In like manner, our high school in partnership with Rowan University, as well as Drexel University, offers academies in Business and Finance, as well as Computer Science. In partnership with Rowan College at Gloucester County, we provide a Law and Justice Academy. All academies provide students with advanced coursework, employment internships, and dual high school/college credit. Along with distinguished academic programs our high school has award winning extracurricular programs. The Lady Braves Volleyball team won their 14th consecutive Olympic Conference, Patriot Division, while our boys and girls soccer teams won their Tri-County Royal Division Championships. Our baseball team captured its Tri-County, Royal Division Championship and South Jersey Group 4 Title. Our golf team won the Tri-County Championship. Sixteen of our Twenty-Three Varsity Sports teams qualified for their respective state tournaments. Our marching band placed 2nd in the U.S. Bands National Championship in Allentown, Pennyslvania.

Williamstown Middle School is an educational community comprised of students in grades five through eight, a competent and caring teaching staff, and involved parents. The school program was crafted with the belief that every student is unique, has the potential to learn, and that learning is a life-long pursuit. Although over 1950 students attend Williamstown Middle School, the school is structured to provide the ambience of a small school by organizing the school into small learning communities called "cores." Each core consists of approximately 180 mixed ability students with three cores per grade level in grades 6-8, and six cores in grade 5. Teams of teachers deliver instruction in the content areas of English Language Arts, math, science, and social studies. Monroe Township Public Schools has become well known in the South Jersey area for its successful implementation of its school-wide and community-wide anti-bullying efforts. During March 2012, a moderator and her film crew from EBS DocuPrime of South Korea visited Williamstown Middle School to observe its Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, bringing national recognition to our district. In 2013, Williamstown Middle School was recognized by the Character Education Partnership, another national organization, as a "Promising Practices" school for its BRAVES periods, which are advisory periods scheduled monthly.

Our elementary schools enjoy an excellent reputation and provide uniform services and programs. Each building is committed to meeting the individual needs of its students because we believe all children can learn. The goal of each elementary school is to address the academic, as well as, the social and emotional needs of our children. Programs are provided to support academic growth, beginning with a focus on reading. An emphasis has been placed on 21st Century Skills, promoting student engagement with problem-solving, critical thinking, collaboration and the use of technology. Technology is available in each classroom, including interactive whiteboards, document cameras, work stations, and laptops. In order to further address the learning needs of all students, we have adopted the NWEA MAP (Measures of Academic Progress) assessment. This adaptive test provides parents and teachers specific information regarding the academic/skill levels of children that are to be used to drive instruction, support learning, and help design flexible grouping.

To meet the ever increasing needs of our special education population we have refined some programming and initiated additional creative strategies. Over the past year we have expanded training of special needs teachers, gen-education teachers, and BSI teachers in the use of research based curriculum: including Orton-Gillingham (O.G.), SRA, and Wilson. While increasing self-contained programs for our elementary and middle school students on the spectrum, we have also equally improved programs to insure least restrictive program options. One such program for which we are especially pleased is what we call our "service rich" environment. We have also expanded first grade and second grade service rich classes to include a third grade class in each of our elementary schools. The service rich concept involves a gen-ed, special-ed and BSI instructor with the instruction of Reading, Writing, and Mathematics. What is especially relevant is that there is at least one teacher with training in SRA, O.G. and/or Wilson in each program. Results are finding students making significant growth in their early foundations in learning. The district has also taken trained Wilson educators and brought Wilson instruction to some of our most educational needy pupils at our middle school, and again the early results are staggering. To meet the Math needs of some of our students, the district has purchased a web-based, research-based program to supplement math instruction. We look forward to the same level of growth as was demonstrated in our reading efforts. We have expanded programming to our spectrum disordered students and will have a sensory room at the elementary, middle school, and high school levels. We have expanded the autism program to the high school; as well as, expanded our BD program to the high school. The district has also created a high school short-term alternative program, operating four to eight in the afternoon/evening to address unique circumstances and reduce out-of-district costs. Moving forward, we are continuing to explore ways to expand our creative programming and meet the unique needs of our special needs population.

Annual district goals are based on our strategic plan, periodic surveys, and continued stakeholder input. We established four major goals and many action strategies for achieving these four goals.

1. Teach effectively using state-of-the art technology and improve student learning.
2. Economize by reducing costs and redirecting funds to priority programs and services.
3. Aggressively market our accomplishments.
4. Mobilize stakeholders to support school funding.

With an overall focus of earning taxpayer confidence to the point of gaining financial stability, we attempt to provide excellence in safe and modern buildings with close community involvement. We continually challenge our students to take advantage of unprecedented opportunities, to dream of future possibilities, and to develop the skills necessary to achieve them. At every turn, we welcome community input and involvement through participation in various school and district-based events, committees, and organizations. We incorporate the many strengths and talents of our community in cultivating greater support for our schools as well as in generating a greater sense of civic pride.