Fort Lee School Board Touts Student Success Amid Curriculum Revisions and State Assessments

The recent Fort Lee School Board meeting was a flurry of significant achievements and detailed policy discussions. The most notable of these was the excellent performance of Fort Lee High School students on the New Jersey Graduation Proficiency Assessments (NJ GPA), where they consistently performed above the state’s average.

During the meeting, the board was vocal about their extensive preparations for the upcoming school reopening on September 7th. Efforts range from administrative training and new teacher orientation to room cleaning and resource acquisition. One of the primary concerns that were addressed involved the air conditioning status in certain school zones. Comprehensive details were provided, showing where installation was finished and where it was still ongoing.

The board presented the NJ GPA results from spring 2023. 97.19% of eligible students took the ELA test, and 98.95% took the math test. When examining the performance across diverse student groups, the board acknowledged disparities.

The board has planned a thorough examination of curriculum content and pacing. Initiatives such as emphasizing early literacy skills, diversifying text in curriculums, and ensuring professional development are in the pipeline.

The discussion wasn’t limited to test scores. In a display of the school’s broad accomplishments, Fort Lee High School’s orchestra’s invitation to perform at the New York Invitational Music Festival at Carnegie Hall stood out. This honor placed them among the top five high school groups chosen nationwide. Furthermore, student Janice Lee earned recognition for her involvement with the New York Youth Symphony, a Grammy-winning group.

Adding to the accolades, the Class of 2023 at Fort Lee High School deserves commendation. Their recent achievements include acceptances to renowned institutions like West Point, the United States Naval Academy, and Ivy League universities, amassing roughly $1.5 million in scholarships.

The school district’s recent New Jersey Quality Single Accountability Continuum (NJ QSAC) review revealed exemplary scores across the board, securing the “high performing” designation for the district.

Public participation was also active. Several topics, including contract discussions, policy documentation accessibility, and policy concerns like the use of corporal punishment, were broached. A particular emphasis was on the transparency and clarity of policies that impact student well-being.

The board also touched on innovative academic endeavors, like the introduction of a math tutoring program at the high school level. Adjustments were made over the summer to the high school intervention course to provide more tailored instruction. Newly separated courses have been introduced to accommodate the differentiated needs of students from grades 9 through 11.

Finally, in a heartfelt segment of the meeting, multiple board members and attendees expressed gratitude to Miss Joanne Hung, who is set to retire. Her lasting impact on the educational community was evident in the praises sung, with one board member stating, “I can say with absolute conviction that you are one of the best instructors…and humans that I have ever met.”

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