Long Hill Township School District

Long Hill Highlights - Winter 2017


Dear Parents, Guardians, Staff, and Community Members,

As Educators, we are constantly reinventing ourselves to meet the needs of our students. In that vein and in an effort to produce more newsletters in a timely manner, we are piloting this online newsletter for the first time with our annual winter newsletter. I hope you enjoy it!

We have so much to celebrate in our schools and we are very proud of the accomplishments of our students. On December 12, 2017, students in Ms. Pogash's 7th and 8th grade classes participated in the New Jersey School Consortium Spelling Bee held at Delbarton School. Eighth grade student Adrian Jackson defeated spellers from seven other public and private schools winning first prize and bringing home a first place trophy. Congratulations to Adrian for all of his efforts.

On November 19th, FORCE Robotics Students from Millington and Central Middle Schools, parent volunteers, Watchung Hills High School Robotics students, Long Hill Girl Scout Troops, Long Hill Board of Education members, Mr. Viturello and Dr. Acevedo hosted and participated in an amazing VEX IQ Robotics Tournament. You could feel pride in the air as Long Hill welcomed 50 Robotics teams from all over New Jersey for the VEX IQ Ringmaster Challenge at the first ever Long Hill Robotics Tournament! Twenty one elementary schools and 29 middle schools competed in the event. Long Hill Students swept the competition as follows:

Middle School:

  • Team LADs with 8th graders Luka Hadzic, Aaron Binstock, and Daniel Senedzhuk swept the Skills, Teamwork, and Excellence Awards.
  • Team ASHA with 7th grader, Amiran Lerner, 8th graders: Sophia Chen, Hannah Han, and Amanda Lei amazed the judges with their Engineering skills and won the coveted Design Award.
  • Team 4 C’s with 6th graders Kevin Feinstein and Michael O’Hara, and 8th graders Mason DiGiorgio and Harrison Quinn impressed the judges and won the Judges Award.

Elementary School:

  • Team Titans with 5th grader Armaan Lerner and 4th grader Jason Zeng out-scored their competitors to win the Skills, Teamwork and Excellence Awards.
  • Team Olympians with 5th grader Kyah Morris and 4th graders Tadas Vilemaitis and Zavier Shyers battled in the final elimination round with a great show.

In late October, I shared with the Board of Education our 2017 PARCC Testing results which highlight the accomplishments in literacy and mathematics of our students in grades 3 - 8. Students take the PARCC assessment each spring. This assessment is an important tool for our teachers and administrators which provides invaluable data on how to improve our instructional practice. Overall, our students did exceptionally well when compared to the State and other states that administer the PARCC assessment. You may click this link to view the presentation. The presentation may also be found on our district website www.longhill.org under Board of Education under presentations.

The first marking period has just ended and the winter recess is upon us. I would like to take this opportunity to wish you and your family a restful holiday season and a joyous and prosperous 2018!

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On December 18, 2017, the Long Hill Township Board of Education thanked Board President Mr. Nicholas Stevens for his service to the Long Hill Township School District. The December 18, 2017 meeting was Mr. Stevens' final Board meeting. Mr. Stevens served on the Board since 2012 as President, Vice-President, and Chairperson of the Negotiations Committee, being a liaison to Watchung Hills Regional High School and a member of the Policy, Curriculum, Legislative, and Community Relations Committees. Thank you Mr. Stevens for volunteering your time and talent to our school community!
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Long Hill Students, Families, and Faculty Support Community Outreach

The Long Hill Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) held its 10th annual Coat Drive from December 4th through the 15th at each of our district schools. Thank you to all of our students, families and staff who donated gently used coats. The PTO collected 185 coats which were brought to All Saints Church in Millington. All Saints Church then distributed the coats as part of their outreach program with donated food to St. John's Church in Dover. This truly exemplifies the season of caring for others. Thank you to all who participated!


Ms. Danielle Barritta

STEAM Teacher

Central Middle School


The Long Hill School District welcomes Ms. Danielle Barritta as the new STEAM Teacher at Central Middle School (CMS). Ms. Barritta replaces Ms. Neuman who left in late October. After a long search, the district is thrilled to welcome Ms. Barritta officially on Tuesday, January 2, 2018 just in time to begin a new cycle at CMS. Ms. Barritta has vast experiences in the classroom and comes to the district from Millburn where she just completed a long-term leave replacement in their STEAM program.Ms. Barritta has experience in Robotics, Art, Digital Photography and Instructional Technology. The district will be working closely with Ms. Barritta to strengthen our STEAM program

Welcome Ms. Barritta!


Central Middle School hosted Parent Teacher Conferences from November 6th through 8th. This year, Central School utilized a system that invited parents to sign up for a conference date and time using our online Genesis Parent Portal. This provided parents with the opportunity to select a date and time that was convenient for them. During the three days of conferences, 184 parent teacher meetings were scheduled between parents and teachers. Central School is looking to improve the new system for our next round of conferences that will be held on March 5th and 6th. If you did not receive an invitation or were unable to attend, please know that you can always schedule an appointment or phone conference by contacting your child’s teacher or our School Counselor, Chrystyna Lazirko.

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All 8th grade students participate in a Book Club where students assign pages and roles, set rules and guidelines, record this information along with their analysis for each week in a journal or their Chrome Books. Students meet with their group every Wednesday to discuss the text, clarify, question, and share their analysis. All 8th graders participate in this activity throughout the year. Groups switch about every six weeks, and students select a book with their group based on a certain theme that aligns with their whole class novel. Students consistently provide insightful comments and connections.


Last year, by securing Title One Federal Funds in the amount of $22,859 through the No Child Left Behind Act, our district was able to train, purchase materials and implement a literacy intervention program called Leveled Literacy Intervention or LLI. The program provides intensive daily instruction to assist students who are struggling with reading comprehension, fluency, and decoding skills. The program is taught by Ms. Minerva our Reading Specialist and Ms. Spinello, our Basic Skills teacher for an 18 week period. The results have been monumental and we have seen students attain grade level proficiency in literacy. Students are identified based on literacy benchmark assessments completed in the district

This year, Dr. Acevedo has once again applied for Title One Funds and has secured $25,766. The funds this year are being used to implement a mathematics intervention program which is comparable to the LLI program in that it is differentiated and leveled based on where the student is currently performing. The program is called Number Worlds and the program works by identifying areas where students are struggling and a course of action is developed to bring the students to grade level. The program is offered through our Basic Skills program and is aligned to our current math program. Our teachers have just completed initial training on December 8th. We are piloting the program with students at Central Middle School and Ms. Skrobacz will be implementing the program initially in early January, with elementary school to follow in mid to late January. We will have a parent informational meeting in late January for those parents whose children are currently enrolled in either of these programs. If you have any questions about any of these programs, please contact your child's principal.


  • January 2, 2018 - classes resume
  • January 8, 2018 - Board of Education meeting - 7:30 p.m.
  • January 22, 2018 - Board of Education meeting - 7:30 p.m.
  • January 30 & 31, 2018 - Pre-school and Kindergarten Registration - Gillette School 9:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.