NJDOE News

Districts reviewed by the department last year and their responses
[Excel Spreadsheet]

Response Type Alignment w/EVVRS Administrative Response Linkages w/ Community Curricular/ Programmatic Student Population Changes Summary Decision
District            
Atlantic City   Administrative personnel change; created administrative teams; centralized data input to reduce duplicating incidents; add a guidance counselor;  added cameras to school buses; improved school climate; increased staff morale; revised Student Discipline Guidebook; administrative decision making focus on positive student behavior. Student engagement program co-sponsored with Atlantic City Police Dept. Sponsored student assemblies on gangs and violence; added a full-day alternative school program.   Response satisfactory. 
Atlantic Co. Spec. Serv. SD Our staff has been trained in the proper reporting of incidents to the EVVRs website.   Added one full-time security person and an SRO officer from the Hamilton Township Police Department; more cameras to help with surveillance;  School/Parent Advisory Council Workshops in safety awareness; SRO presentations to students.  Increased student involvement in governance.   Response satisfactory. 
Bound Brook SD   Adequate staffing of assistant principal positions; concerted effort to address discipline issues in high school; staff development related to positive student discipline. An SRO was [put] in place. A Positive Behavior System Grant through UMDNJ was initiated Gang members removed. Response satisfactory.  Result of Site Visit:  No systemic failure to report incidents on the EVVRS; many actions taken by district contributed to the decline. The department will take no further action. 
Burlington Co. Spec. Serv. SD Some incidents should have been judged less than serious offenses and were primarily minor skirmishes. Training provided on what constitutes a reportable incident.      Continued with counseling programs which focus on anger management, conflict resolution and the reduction of harassment, intimidation and bullying.  Continued to provide Crisis Prevention Institute training to staff.   Response satisfactory.  Result of site visit:  Overall, the district correctly applied the standards for reporting of incidents on the EVVRS. The department will take no further action. 
Camden City SD Adjustments made after review found many incidents reported were merely documented in-house infractions, grade appropriate situations which should not have been forwarded to the EVVRS system. Transfer of administrative staff and security officers; installation of security cameras;  purchase of metal detection inspection program and security radio communication system.  Establishment of Camden Collaborative; Community and Town Meetings; Cops in Schools. The Cadet Program; Camden/Rutgers Leadership Program, Challenge Course Program, and the Youth Court Program.   Response satisfactory.  Result of site visit:  Based on the records reviewed, the district's reporting of violence and vandalism through EVVRS was inconsistent. The district was directed to take immediate action to ensure that the EVVRS definitions determine the incidents reported. 
Cape May Co. Spec. Serv. SD Review to determine if incident is a direct result of a student's disability. The high school principal has instituted a pro-active presence in hallways when students are present.     Revitalization of a district-wide social skills program, incorporating the UMDNJ Social Decision-Making Problem-Solving Program; utilization of a variety of behavior modification techniques.    Response satisfactory. 
Dover Public Schools Insuring cases are reported accurately. Providing in-school suspension as a disciplinary alternative.  Increasing home/school communication. Providing student assistance counselors at the high school and middle school.   Response satisfactory.  
Englewood City SD Item-by-item review of the Violence and Vandalism reporting  requirements and the use of the definitions as enhanced by the scenarios. Result was tighter control of language used in the reporting resulting in an immediate drop in reportable incidents.  Removal of administrative personnel; transfer of teaching staff; changed lunchroom and class change procedures.      Middle and high schools began to review residency related issues while dealing with students.  Ensuing residency checks resulted in the removal of six students, four of whom had accumulated multiple reportable incidents over their years in the district. Response satisfactory.  Result of site visit:  The district has taken a number of actions to reduce the level of school violence.  The district has correctly applied the standards for reporting of incidents on the EVVRS; the department will take no further action.
Gloucester Township   Survey of students on school safety and suggestions for bullying prevention. Workshops with local police department; end-of-year Police Appreciation Week activities Morning anti-violence announcements; life skills bullying prevention classes; anti-bullying theater group presentations; peer mediation; lessons on self-esteem; Random Acts of Kindness Month;  essay contest (theme "Make our school safe from Bullying"); GAPP - Gang Awareness and Prevention Program; SADD Club ribbon campaign in support of Violence Prevention Week; pamphlets on dating violence and sexual harassment.   Response satisfactory.  
Hillside   Effective school administration.       Response insufficient. No description of intervention. Department site visit to be arranged. 
Jersey City SD Key district personnel trained in utilizing information provided by DOE at its regional training.  Senior administrators review Suspension Report submitted by schools before information is put onto EVVRS.        Response satisfactory.  Result of site visit:  Based on the records reviewed, the district's reporting of violence and vandalism through EVVRS was inconsistent. The district was directed to take immediate action to ensure that the EVVRS definitions determine the incidents reported. 
Liberty Academy Charter School           Response insufficient  No description of intervention.  Department site visit to be arranged. 
Paterson Public Schools Every school was provided a copy of the Incident Scenarios - this cleared up for many administrators the uncertainty of what incidents were reportable on the EVVRS; ensured substance abuse incidents were entered correctly.  Enhanced training for security personnel; "Wanding" of students done randomly. Superintendent has established a multi-cultural task force that assists the school in calming students so as to prevent acts of violence that had occurred in the community from continuing in school.      Response satisfactory. 
Schomberg Charter School High counts of incidents in 2002-03 the result of improper inputting of incident data, e.g., entering one incident with two offenders twice instead of once.          Response satisfactory. 
Southern Regional   School security guard place on duty in evenings; Lighthouse (training staff to identify trouble students) implemented. School Resource Officer playing a more active role; increased police attendance at large events. Increased use of  peer mediation; Character Counts initiative emphasized; increasing number of students enrolled in  Jump Start (early release program for seniors); SAC-led substance intervention program; increased use of physician-based substance screening; district purchase of breathalyzers for alcohol screening.  Student enrollment decline due to sending district's pullout. Response satisfactory. 
Toms River Regional   Installation of cameras on buses and in schools.  School Resource Officer program in three high schools and then in two intermediate schools. Expanded character education and peer mediation programs; purchased "Lions Quest:  Skills for Action, Exploring the Issues of Promoting Peace and Preventing Violence". Provided training on the curriculum.    Exemplary response. 
Trenton School District School-based training on proper classification of incidents.  Revised discipline policies and procedures; provided professional development on de-escalation techniques and dealing with students with aggressive behavior.  Issued guidance on school safety and security.  Implemented Positive Behavior Support programs; implemented character education, anger management, anti-bullying  programs.   Response Satisfactory. 
Union City   Full complement of security guards hired for each school.  They attend violence prevention workshops.  They work with assigned uniformed police officers in the high schools and larger elementary schools. Support services teams have worked to identify "at risk" students and assist on an individual basis; MSW's added to assist teams.  District works closely with the police department and state police to offer gang awareness workshops for parents, staff and students in an ongoing preventive effort. Our core curriculum has been revised at all grade levels to include character education in addition to our conflict resolution/peer mediation effort to help students make positive decisions. DARE officers have initiated a new anti-violence curriculum.  The district works closely with the local police department and state police to offer gang awareness workshops for parents, staff and students.    Exemplary response. 
Vineland School District Greater use of the examples/scenarios issued by the state.   Closer teacher/student/parent communication and involvement. 2nd Step character education program; motivational speakers;  Peace and Respect Initiative.    Response satisfactory.