STILLWATER TOWNSHIP SCHOOL DISTRICT (37-5040)

STILLWATER TOWNSHIP SCHOOL DISTRICT

The Stillwater Township Board of Education operates a Pre-K through sixth grade district housed in one building. This rural township comprises the entire district. Among the thirty-eight instructional areas are a gymnasium, media center, art and music rooms, and a technology lab. Student population is approximately 300. Stillwater School is truly a reflection of its community. It remains a rural school in an increasingly suburban county. Active parental involvement in the education of their children helps to keep the ties between home and school strong. The school is small enough that the students have a sense of community, with staff members knowing the majority of the children by name. This adds to the feeling of warmth and nurturing that one can notice in the interaction between students and adults. The curricula provided to our students are rich and varied. Curricula are continuously reviewed and revised to reflect the New Jersey Student Learning Standards. Language arts instruction is balanced and unifies reading, grammar, writing, spelling, speaking, and listening. These basics are taught using valued children's literature. Our program is an award-winning program as it was recognized by the International Reading Association's Exemplary Reading Program for the State of New Jersey. A problem solving approach is employed to teach mathematics while strong emphasis remains on the basics. Science lessons increasingly have students conducting hands-on experiments, as mandated by the Next Generation Science Standards. Geography and study skills are important strands of the social studies curriculum. Our world languages program has Spanish being taught in kindergarten through sixth grade. Art, music, library, technology education, health and physical education are important subjects that support and enrich the traditional academic offerings. Support services for our students include Special Education, Basic Skills Improvement, and Gifted and Talented programs. To the maximum extent possible, extra services are provided within the regular classroom, allowing for coordination of these programs. Resource Centers and small group instruction are provided when they best meet the needs of the students. A program for the gifted and talented affords these students opportunities to channel their gifts. Students who demonstrate artistic, musical, and technological talents are also given extra avenues for expression. The four elementary schools and the receiving high school, Kittatinny Regional High School, coordinate curriculum development. The Five Year Curriculum Development Calendar was synchronized so that a major subject field is the regional focus each year. At the end of the five-year cycle all major curricula have been rewritten so that students from all four elementary systems enter their seventh grade year with similar experiences. The schools in the Kittatinny sending districts employ a curriculum consultant whose job is to coordinate the development of state of the art curricula. Each year he works with a committee consisting of teachers from all of the schools to create a new curriculum that is built upon the recommendations contained in the New Jersey Student Learning Standards. Teacher training opportunities for the year focus on enabling educators to implement revised programs. Computers, connected by high speed internet are used throughout the school. Students in grades 3-6 are now 1:1 with portable technology, while students in grades PK-2 have access to desktop computers in their classrooms. We also have a computer lab that houses 26 desktop computers. We have appropriate tools for students such as digital cameras, scanners and printers. All of our classrooms have an ActiveBoard. These boards integrate software appropriate for all of our lessons and activities within the classroom. The digital classroom enhances the different types of learning and opens an immeasurable amount of information to share and discover. In the Applied Technologies class, students learn the functions of the hardware and many different types of software. These include, but are not limited to, Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Publisher, and Google Apps for Education. Students also use software that incorporates keyboarding skills, presentations, and design. In class, learning is enhanced by integrating the core curriculum. This includes language arts, math, science, and social studies. Our students strive to learn more while expressing their creativity with computers. Many extracurricular opportunities are provided for our students. Nearly one quarter of our students participate in band and chorus. The Student Council helps to make the students aware of the importance of government and provides an opportunity for the children to serve their community through activities like food and toy drives, and visits to senior citizens. Enrichment classes in hand-bells, the environment, technology and more are taught as after-school electives. Family Math, Family Science and Literacy Connections classes are presented during the evening. We offer an after-school learning center for all students in grades 1-6 to take advantage of, which is intended to support their daily learning. A summer library program provides weekly lessons and allows parents and students year-round access to our media collection. A four week summer school helps students to stay intellectually active, and over 100 pupils attend each year. An active Parent/Teacher Association supports the school by providing assemblies, a book fair and numerous other student-centered activities. They also financially support school projects such as money toward the laptop carts and an outdoor classroom. A spirit of cooperation exists between the school and the community that it serves. The township government works to support the efforts of our maintenance staff by providing snow removal and on occasion heavy equipment when needed. We have a mutual agreement with the Sussex County Sheriff’s Office to visit the school weekly to provide additional security. They also provide the L.E.A.D. program (Law Enforcement against Drugs) to our 5th grade students. The fire company gives yearly fire safety assemblies. Recreation leagues offer services to keep our athletic fields maintained. Community members volunteer their time as guest speakers and readers, subject area experts, and library aides. In turn the school makes its facilities available for numerous activities for nonprofit organizations. The school is the hub of community activities. This symbiotic relationship defines the culture that makes Stillwater a unique place to live, study and work.