Im Tony Mongelluzzo, Principal of Oakcrest High School and it is my privilege to boast to members of the community about our students, staff and school. Oakcrest High School is entering its 52nd school year of academic excellence. Oakcrest is a comprehensive high school located in Mays Landing that provides a secondary school education to Hamilton Township. Our school population is approximately 1,150 students with an ethnic distribution of 50% Caucasian, 28% African American, 16% Hispanic, and 6% American Indian and Asian. What a pleasure it is to work with a true multicultural and diverse student body.
Twenty-six varsity athletic teams and 39 co-curricular activities are in place at Oakcrest High School. Our athletic teams participate in the very competitive Cape Atlantic League Conference and our activities provide viable opportunities to compete at the local, state and national levels. Activities like our Marching Ambassadors, Chorus, Dance, Drama, Art and Media provide students with opportunities to demonstrate their creativity as well as improve upon talents that they may possess. Programs such as our Fall Activity Carnival, our annual Back-to-School Night, Character Counts activities, Spirit Week, Homecoming Dance, Proms and Project Graduation are just a few activities that demonstrate our willingness to reach out to students/community and get them involved. It should also be noted that not only do we have opportunities for students, but also activities for parents to join . so get involved!! It should be obvious that Oakcrest has something for everyone.
Oakcrest High School is a microcosm of the United States from an academic, ethnic, social and economic perspective. While there are many societal risk factors in the school population, achievement continues to grow. We are continuously seeking to raise the academic bar, and to demonstrate this effort the Class of 2012 has remained competitive with their SAT scores. Last school year 152 students took an Advanced Placement Test and earned 144 eligible scores for college credit. We are also proud that the Class of 2012 had 313 seniors accepted into 183 different colleges/universities, those seniors were awarded a total of 7.9 million dollars worth of academic scholarships.
Oakcrest remains on the cutting edge of interdisciplinary education. English and History are taught in a cohort environment that provides a collaborative approach where content teachers, inclusion and reading specialists design and implement curricular goals and objectives. The results are both academic and lifelong lessons by which students are placed in a situation that allow them to appreciate the interconnected nature of what they have learned and experienced. Our commitment to this philosophy is demonstrated in the scheduling of courses and assignment of teachers that maximize their personal talents and skills. Taking the interdisciplinary concept to the next level, Oakcrest has implemented a new and innovative curricular feature to its students course selection options. We have created an environment in which students can receive a more authentic learning experience by designing ten Small Learning Communities. These institutes are: Art History, Engineering, Entrepreneurship, Environmental Sciences, Finance, Forensics, Medicine and Health, Political Science I and II, and the Film Institute. Oakcrest HS will continue to address key concepts such as; increase of rigor in all courses, preparedness of students for both college and the work force, and efforts/initiatives to close the achievement gap for all students.
In addition to the core content courses, Oakcrest is extremely proud of our State of New Jersey Best Practice Guidance Program. The Guidance department continues to be committed to providing all students exposure to a comprehensive developmental program that addresses the academic, career and personal/social needs of the student. The proactive, enthusiastic delivery of the guidance curriculum occurs in the classroom, through evening/day programs, small group meetings as well as individualized conferences.
This year Oakcrest High School will continue to build upon previous goals as we seek new and innovative means to deliver curricular goals and objectives. Members of the faculty will continue to implement a positive Public Relations Program that will highlight the numerous educational, athletic, enrichment and social activities that our students and staff have been and will be participating in throughout the year. Our goal is to encourage and support our staff in their attempts to be published in various professional publications as well as present to other educators at State and National conventions. To highlight one last program, Oakcrest High School will continue to build its Renaissance Program. The goal of the program is to motivate and assist students towards improving their academic performance by involving parents, teachers and community as well as recognizing students for doing the right thing.
Finally, we are aggressively researching numerous ways to assist our students in their attempts to meet with success on standardized tests and remain competitive in attaining their post secondary goals. Through scheduling, challenging course offerings, after school programs, infusion of technology and other educational resources we hope to provide an educational environment that allows our students to strive for excellence.
In closing I would also like to let everyone know that I am extremely proud to serve our school community as its educational leader. We have a very caring and enthusiastic staff, tremendous student body and an extremely supportive school community. We encourage you to log on to Oakcrest.net to learn more about the variety of programs that students can avail themselves here at Oakcrest. There you would also have the opportunity to interact with teachers, coaches and activity advisors in a spirit of community via e-mail. I would also like to thank our Board of Education for their support of our students and their overall educational programs. My final statement to our school community is Oakcrest High School has been and will continue to be a source of FALCON PRIDE!!
Class + Pride + Dedication = Oakcrest High School