South Brunswick School District (23-4860)

South Brunswick School District

Dear Parents and Citizens of South Brunswick Township:

Mission Statement: The South Brunswick School District will prepare students to be lifelong learners, critical thinkers, effective communicators and wise decision makers. This will be accomplished through the use of the New Jersey Core Curriculum Content Standards (NJCCCS) and/or the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) at all grade levels. The schools will maintain an environment that promotes intellectual challenge, creativity, social and emotional growth and the healthy physical development of each student.

The South Brunswick School District is pleased to provide you with its annual School Report Card for 2015-2016 generated by the New Jersey Department of Education with its prescribed form. This report provides data and information from the prior school year to give members of the public the opportunity to assess the accomplishments of our schools and district. Data is also provided on similar districts and state averages.

As you review the data, you will find that South Brunswick Township continues to fare well in a number of areas when compared to other districts and the state. You will also notice that taxpayers of South Brunswick realize a good return on their investment. The cost to educate a South Brunswick student remains below the statewide average.

Dollars spent on education and test scores do not tell the whole story. The South Brunswick School District has maintained its status as one of the finest public school systems in New Jersey. It has been repeatedly recognized for its superior and innovative academic programs, dedicated and talented teaching staff, varied co-curricular and athletic programs, and support services for students and their families.

The District is monitored routinely as part of the New Jersey Quality Single Accountability Continuum (NJQSAC), which is the State Department of Education’s evaluation system for public school districts. The system focuses on monitoring and evaluating the District in key components that, based on research, have been identified to be key factors in effective school districts: governance, instruction and program, personnel, fiscal management and operations. The District has been proud to receive the uppermost ranking of "High Performing School District,” and to be labeled as a "lighthouse district" for the State of New Jersey.

South Brunswick also believes in exhibition of student work. Throughout the year, students routinely exhibit and present their work before classmates, within the school and throughout the district. This is particularly evident in our standardized approach to research and inquiry tasks, beginning in grade three and concluding in grade twelve; world language nights and events; the annual student art gallery; theatrical productions; and the district music festivals and concerts.

Along with our emphasis on high academic achievement for all students, we place a strong emphasis on providing a safe and caring school environment. By way of illustration, our elementary schools implement the Responsive Classroom approach, which incorporates character education as a cornerstone for teaching and learning. The middle schools build upon this with the Developmental Designs approach to character education, and the high school uses the work of the Institute of Excellence and Ethics in its “Strive for Five” program. All of our approaches are research-based and emphasize the development of both performance and moral character. Testament to our work in this area was the naming of our high school as a National School of Character by the Character Education Partnership. Ours was the only high school in New Jersey to be nominated for this honor and one of only four high schools across the entire country to have received the designation.

Our athletic programs have been repeatedly recognized for their excellence (team performance as well as the performance of coaches), and our co-curricular programs develop the many talents of our students. South Brunswick School District provides remedial, intervention, and enrichment programs for students of diverse interests and needs; before school, during school, after school, and during the summer. Many of these programs are provided through our Community Education program that also serves the adult interests of the South Brunswick community.

Academically, the South Brunswick Schools are recognized within the state and nationally. A few indicators of our past successes are as follows: National Blue Ribbon Schools, N.J. Star Schools, Governor’s School of Excellence Award, Dodge Foundation Recognized Principals, National Board Certified Teachers, New Jersey Music Educators Association Administrators of the Year, and Nationally Ranked High School Band and Color Guard. The high school has been named to Newsweek Magazine’s list of Best High Schools in America—an honor in which every staff and community member in the South Brunswick School District can take great pride. South Brunswick Township has been named to Money Magazine’s list of the 100 Best Small Towns to Live In America due in part to its “top-notch” schools. The opening statement to this honor began as follows: “People tend to move to this diverse town in Middlesex County for the great public school system…” NJ Monthly Magazine has named South Brunswick to the list of the Top 100 Towns in New Jersey—a ranking in which school academic performance is a key factor. Finally, the South Brunswick School District has been recognized as one of fewer than 400 public school districts in the nation being honored by the College Board with a place on the Annual AP Honor Roll, for simultaneously increasing access to Advanced Placement coursework while maintaining or increasing the percentage of students earning scores of 3 or higher on AP exams. In recent years, our SAT scores have risen to new heights—and in some cases, reached the highest scores ever in the history of the school district, and the number of National Merit Finalists and National Merit Commended Students has risen to all-time highs.

The District points with pride to its many partnerships and shared services including those with the offices of South Brunswick Township (police, fire, first aid, recreation, health, recycling), the Office of Aging, the Aging in Place Partnership, the South Brunswick Public Library, Municipal Alliance, the Commission on Women, the South Brunswick Education Foundation, the South Brunswick Parent Academy, the Chamber of Commerce, City Council, Parent-Teacher Organizations, School Site Councils, Recreation and Athletic Leagues, the Bridge Center of UMDNJ, the Ministerium, and our many Friday Folder Community Groups.

Our District theme this year is “Attitude Determines Altitude – Fly High!”. The staff, parents, and community of South Brunswick work together to assist all of our students in understanding the importance and power of working in collaboration to improve, grow and achieve.