Woodbridge Township School District (23-5850)

Woodbridge Township School District

Report Card Narrative 2015-2016

The vision of the Woodbridge Township School District is to instruct and inspire our young people to become successful and significant beyond their classrooms. This vision constitutes a sacred promise we make to the students in our schools. Our core beliefs help guide us to realize this vision; beliefs such as: 1) great teachers who provide continuously engaging instruction will improve student achievement, 2) all children can learn, but learning takes effort, 3) every lesson should be a positive learning experience, 4) every child deserves our best every day, 5) we are here to help and 6) we need to give our children what they need.

With a firm resolve to present our students with the skills and knowledge they require, Woodbridge Township boasts of a unified curriculum that is rich in content and varied in method. Our curriculum allows us to differentiate instruction and address the requirements of college and career readiness. We are especially proud of our dual-enrollment courses and our university partnerships. Students at our high schools can take certified courses through Syracuse University, New Jersey Institute of Technology and Middlesex County College. Students enrolled in these dual-enrollment courses complete the actual college curriculum, enjoy visits from the college professors, and receive college transcripts.

We have two programs continuing at Woodridge High School promoting the medical field. The first program is called the Decision for Dentistry Program. We are currently in our third year running the program. Students who are interested in a career in dentistry apply for admittance during the first two weeks of school. Accepted students are bused to the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey four times throughout the school year to attend dentistry training courses. The second program runs in conjunction with our Anatomy classes. Selected students visit the Robert Wood Johnson facility and work with cadavers to gain a deeper level of understanding of the human body.

Our school district continually updates curricula putting particular focus on the common core state standards. Our curricula provide our students with the skills and knowledge they need to be ready for college and/or careers. The Woodbridge Township School District is particularly proud of our staff technology initiative. Every staff member has been provided with either a chromebook or an iPad to enhance instruction, provide positive learning experiences and engage students. In just four years, our district-wide computing device inventory has gone from under 3,000 to over 14,000 devices.

Recognizing that good instruction requires well trained and dedicated teachers, Woodbridge is alive with professional improvement activities. Utilizing our own highly trained practitioners, as well as instructors from Middlesex County Regional Educational Services Professional Development Academy, we have created a program that is consistent with current research regarding staff improvement. We have also instituted vanguard training for iPads for our teaching staff. We have seven Apple certified staff members who provide individual support to classroom teachers.

We are proud to announce that last year high school students took 1,198 Advanced Placement Exams. Woodbridge Township School District students obtained all-time highs in both the number of AP tests taken and passing scores earned. Of these students, 709 (nearly two-thirds) scored a “3” or higher. As a result, our graduates were eligible to receive credit for over 700 college courses. Additionally, our SAT averages continue to improve while the number of students taking the SAT district-wide has increased. Over 60% of our students scored over 1000 on the newly designed SAT. Meanwhile, the majority of our grades 3 – 11 PARCC scores were above participating PARCC State average.

At the elementary level we will continue to provide a strong foundation of knowledge in core subject while cultivating a genuine appreciation of the process of learning; only then can we truly produce life-long learners. We are proud of our revised K-5 math curriculum and our Journeys language arts literacy program.

Our middle schools have new math courses in order to differentiate the speed, scope and sequence of mathematical knowledge to ensure later success. Students will be afforded the chance to learn middle school math at a rate that is more individualized to their abilities. This will ensure they are optimally prepared for higher level math in high school.

The vital task of education is not done in isolation. We are grateful that the Mayor and the Woodbridge Township Council work cooperatively with the Board of Education to improve the educational experience as well as the community. As a result of this collaboration, we have increased our already considerable commitment to safety, technology and capital improvement. We are particularly proud of our improvements to the community use athletic and recreation facilities that were made possible by the unprecedented cooperative agreement between the Township and the Board of Education. These facilities include upgrades and renovations to many of our existing community use facilities, including gyms, athletic fields, playgrounds and auditoriums. We know this monumental undertaking will benefit all community members, young and old, artistic and athletic, parent and child, because our children deserve our best.

Although the academic achievement of our students has been commendable, Woodbridge educators are not complacent. We intend to guarantee that every student will learn and will be proficient on grade level curriculum and become successful and significant beyond their classrooms. While this is a lofty goal, the Woodbridge Township School District will accept nothing less.