“What on earth is going on? Parents are waiting on long lines in the hot sun outside the Edison Education Center”. This was the scene facing the enrollment department for the opening of school this year, as an additional 637 students were registered for the Edison schools. JP Stevens received nearly 100 more students, and other heavily impacted schools were Woodrow Wilson, John Marshall and Woodbrook.
The issue of overcrowding is surfacing with even greater intensity, even though we have recently expanded JP Stevens and Edison High School with science wings; we have constructed eight more classrooms at Menlo Park Elementary School; we will be launching the new James Monroe Elementary School in January; and we are in the midst of planning for additional classrooms at Woodbrook Elementary School.
Apart from the critical issue of overcrowding in the schools, there is good news for the town and schools of Edison. Money magazine ranked Edison 19th among the “Best Places to Live in America,” in large measure due to its “top notch schools.” Edison received high marks from the magazine for its “strong schools with nearly 80% of all youngsters attending its well-regarded public school system.”
New Jersey Monthly magazine recently published their bi-annual rankings of the 340 high schools in the State. Edison High School has catapulted from 174th in 2012 to 110 in 2016, placing the school in the top one third of high schools in the State. JP Stevens High School jumped from 80th place in 2012 to 24th place in 2016, or in the top 7% of high schools in New Jersey. While NJ Monthly selects their own academic criteria to make decisions, the higher rankings certainly indicate greater overall achievement and general perception of the Edison Public Schools.
Despite the difficulty of coping with the costs of the substantial student enrollment increase, it is reassuring to note that the efforts for educational improvement are being recognized by national and state publications We thank the parents for being so conscientious in pursuing solid learning for their children, the dedicated teachers working so assiduously in providing challenging educational opportunities for our students, and the taxpayers for giving the essential resources for the Edison schools.
Frank Heelan Ed.D., President
Edison Board of Education