Ross Street School #11 believes the mission of our school is to experience a sense of hope and a strong desire founded on the principles of embracing change, fostering interdependence, equity and integrity, will result in success for all children as we prepare them to be 21st Century technology infused life-long learners. Through collaboration and commitment, all members of the Ross Street family contribute to the development of an engaging learning environment, where children develop strong habits of good citizenship.
Instructional programs at Ross Street Elementary School include the design and maintenance of student-centered classrooms. Primary, K-2 and upper elementary, 3-5 language arts literacy curricula include skill and strategy experiences to encourage student development as fluent readers, writers, speakers, listeners and viewers. Literacy First, the district’s innovative first and second grade Reading and Writing Workshop program, combines best practices in language arts, including shared, guided and independent reading; reflective journaling; word study; and independent writing and conferencing and strategy groups to achieve the goal of primary literacy for all students. It also provides a time for guided reading, interest book clubs, and focuses on research based literacy strategies. New this year is the Journeys program that enhances the foundation set in the primary grades. Then in the intermediate grades, 4-5, the program extends the philosophy into Reading Writing curricula with the same components as the primary grades. The acclaimed Everyday Mathematics program is used in grades K-5 and received, district wide, the national Everyday Mathematics Outstanding Achievement award based on several years of exceptional performance on the state-wide assessments. Quality instruction is also provided in social studies, science, health, physical education, guidance, world languages, vocal and instrumental music, and art. All areas of instruction are student centered, interactive, differentiated, and align with the Common Core Standards and New Jersey Core Curriculum Content Standards.
In addition to our strong academic and technology programs, the visual and performing arts are a vital part of the Ross Street School experience. Students in all grade levels participate in vocal and instrumental music concerts, which highlight cultural diversity and include oral interpretation as well as dance opportunities. The school also provides an Intervention and Referral Service, which assists faculty with strategies and skills for students who exhibit difficulty in a particular subject and allows for differentiated instructional methodologies for all student success. There are In-class support and self-contained Special Education services, Gifted and Talented as well as Speech, Occupational and Physical Therapy, and guidance programs, including those focusing on social skills for all students. A strong Academic Support Instruction program in language arts and mathematics generates a variety of classroom and school-wide projects to encourage increased student motivation and family involvement. In addition to a highly qualified faculty and certified staff, who continuously pursue personal growth through district professional development opportunities and school-sponsored training and articulation programs in technology, literacy, mathematics, health and science-related topics as well as differentiated instruction, a full-time certified school nurse is on staff providing immediate on-site care. School # 11 once again partnered with the Visiting Nurses Association to enable students to see a Nurse Practitioner. A Health and Safety Committee, comprised of various members of our school community, meets regularly to ensure our students have a safe, healthy, positive and nurturing environment. Through the committee’s efforts our school received an Asthma Friendly School Award. In collaboration with one of our three high schools, Woodbridge High School’s Teacher Apprentice Program (TAP) allows for senior students to spend a portion of their day with students in grades 1-5 and provide tutorial assistance to small group instruction. Ross Street School is also one of several sites in the Woodbridge Township School District where an After Care Program is conducted daily from 3:30-6:30pm.
To support 21st Century Learning, our school infrastructure is equipped with wireless Internet access in all classrooms. Being the recipient of a large monetary donation of technology to equip all classrooms with state of the art items, Lap top and Netbook computers, in mobile carts, Turning Point Student Response systems, and interactive Mimio technology are available for our students and staff to use in order to access the Internet and enhance our impressive district-wide curriculum. Our school also has a site license for Measuring Up: MyQuest and Insight, are web-based tutorial programs designed to help students achieve skill level mastery, prepare for test taking, or provide remediation in critical skill areas in Math and Language Arts. In addition, Reading A-Z and Raz-Kids are web-based tutorial programs for students to master reading comprehension skills and fluency at or beyond the student’s grade-appropriate reading level.
As a part of our comprehensive education program, Ross Street School #11 is proud to offer our students an Academic Honor Roll, Student of the Month based upon the Pillars of Character Education, Monthly 100% Homework Awards, Safety Patrols, an active Student Council, Chorus, Band, and student participation in our district track meet. In addition to its academic emphasis, Ross Street School emphasizes character education and citizenship. We participate in a research based character education program, entitled Community of Caring, focusing on the values of respect, responsibility, caring, trust, and family. In fact, our school received a Heart of Gold Award for its generosity in the Statewide Kindness Awareness Campaign. Our anti-bullying initiatives focus on classroom lessons, school assemblies, and conflict resolution education. Our active Student Council promotes citizenship and caring about our community through staffing our morning announcements and sponsoring school wide participation in various food drives, intergenerational activities for our senior citizens, a walk for the American Diabetes Association, March of Dimes, St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, a backpack collection for foster children, and other charitable organizations. Ross Street has been chosen, through the Woodbridge Mayor’s Advocacy Committee for Education, to be a participant in the Adopt a School program which is a partnership between the local businesses and our school community. To build upon community relationships, Ross Street has partnered with Woodbridge Middle School and created a program called PWOW (Peer Writers of Woodbridge), which is a writing program that uses peer tutoring to enrich students at all levels in the fields of secondary level preparation, organizational and study skills with an intentional emphasis on reading and writing, to ultimately result in successful student performances on the NJASK state-wide assessments. Going Green, involves students in efforts to conserve energy in the school environment by utilizing technology to collect and analyze data and practice at school and home the three Rs: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. We also are the recipients of a sustainable garden developed by a high school student who participates in a local Eagle Scout program. Continuing with our healthy lifestyle initiative, is a weekly Fitness Club hosted by our School Nurse and Physical Education teacher due to the school being the recipient of a grant through the American Dairy Association and in partnership with NFL’s Fuel Up Play 60 program. New this year was a generous donation of a state-of-the-art jungle gym apparatus, which were the joint efforts between the Mayor of Woodbridge Township and the Woodbridge Board of Education.
A strong and supportive Parent Teacher Organization conducts many activities designed to enrich the social and academic lives of the children at Ross Street Elementary School. Parent volunteers regularly assist in the media center and all grade level classrooms. They sponsor numerous fundraisers, subsidize transportation for school trips, provide educational assembly programs, organize and conduct Field Day, and contribute newsworthy articles about Ross Street School to the local newspaper.
The core value of family develops through the many partnerships already described and as a member of the Community of Caring network; the Ross Street School proudly supports the six essential Community of Caring pillars: Respect, Responsibility, Caring, Fairness, Trustworthiness and Citizenship, which ultimately builds concerned citizens for the 21st Century. Working together, the administration, faculty, staff, parents and students strive for excellence, and as Ross Street “Super Stars” our learning community wholeheartedly supports the school’s motto—Our Path to Success Begins Today!