Matawan Regional High School
|Matawan Regional High School|
|450 Atlantic Avenue
Aberdeen, NJ 07747
|Type||Regional public high school|
|Motto||Excellence in education|
|School district||Matawan-Aberdeen Regional School District|
|Asst. principals||Sean Cronin
|Enrollment||1,049 (as of 2014-15)|
|Student to teacher ratio||11.4:1|
|Athletics conference||Shore Conference|
|Accreditation||Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools|
Matawan Regional High School is a four-year regional public high school located in Aberdeen Township, New Jersey, United States, serving students in ninth through twelfth grades as the lone secondary school of the Matawan-Aberdeen Regional School District. Serving students from Aberdeen Township and Matawan, it is one of Monmouth County's largest schools. The school has been accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools since 1951. The school mascot is a husky.
As of the 2014-15 school year, the school had an enrollment of 1,049 students and 92.2 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 11.4:1. There were 219 students (20.9% of enrollment) eligible for free lunch and 91 (8.7% of students) eligible for reduced-cost lunch.
Awards, recognition and rankings
The school was the 139th-ranked public high school in New Jersey out of 339 schools statewide in New Jersey Monthly magazine's September 2014 cover story on the state's "Top Public High Schools", using a new ranking methodology. The school had been ranked 92nd in the state of 328 schools in 2012, after being ranked 126th in 2010 out of 322 schools listed. The magazine ranked the school 111th in 2008 out of 316 schools. The school was ranked 115th in the magazine's September 2006 issue, which surveyed 316 schools across the state.
Schooldigger.com ranked the school 253rd out of 376 public high schools statewide in its 2010 rankings (a decrease of 38 positions from the 2009 rank) which were based on the combined percentage of students classified as proficient or above proficient on the language arts literacy and mathematics components of the High School Proficiency Assessment (HSPA).
When the State of New Jersey mandated graded school systems replace district schools in 1894, Matawan Township and Matawan Borough constructed an eight-room brick school building at the corner of Broad Street and South Street, which was completed and occupied in 1895.
A 1913 graduate described the school as having four rooms on the first floor, and four rooms and a long, wide hall on the second floor. There was no indoor plumbing until a major addition was made to the building about 1910, so outdoor toilets were used for about fifteen years. Sanitary facilities were added in the basement. The Class of 1913 consisted of 34 eighth graders, most of whom were expected to go to work after they finished school.
By 1923, the school was so overcrowded that it was running double sessions to teach its students in 12 rooms, so the township voted to build a new high school next door.
The first Matawan High School was completed and occupied in 1924 on 8 acres (32,000 m2) at the corner of Broad Street and South Street. The 2 1⁄2-story brick building of Georgian design was constructed at a cost of $175,000. It contained 13 classrooms, a study hall, a cafeteria, an auditorium seating 527, and a gymnasium with capacity for 300. The school had 388 students and 14 teachers in 1936; 76 seniors graduated with the Class of 1936. The school had recently taken in students from Laurence Harbor, New Jersey, effectively doubling the graduating class between 1933 and 1936. The school, which included some middle school students in 1957, had 540 high school students and their 28 teachers. After it was replaced in 1962, consideration was given to making the old high school an elementary school  but it was eventually demolished.
Matawan Regional High School was built in 1962 to deal with sharp population growth due to the construction of 2,300 new housing units in the area. Population nearly doubled between the 1960 census figure of 12,456 and the 1965 estimate of 21,177. The school had 1,780 students and 102 teachers in the 1964/1965 school year. The 62 rooms included 33 classrooms, 2 gymnasiums, an auditorium, a cafeteria, 2 music rooms, 2 industrial arts shops, 8 science rooms, and 2 fine arts rooms.
The school underwent a $13.3 million renovation project completed in September 2004 which included a new facade, new chemistry and oceanography laboratory classrooms, a new art wing, including a kiln, computer labs, as well as a new greenhouse. The sports department received a renovated artificial turf football field and stadium lighting. Streetside saw a new electronic sign.
The Matawan High School Huskies compete in the Shore Conference, an athletic conference made up of private and public high schools centered at the Northern Jersey Shore. All schools in this conference are located within Monmouth County and Ocean County, and the league operates under the jurisdiction of the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA). With 794 students in grades 10-12, the school was classified by the NJSIAA for the 2015-16 school year as North Jersey, Group III for most athletic competition purposes, which included schools with an enrollment of 778 to 1,066 students in that grade range.
The Matawan High School baseball team (63-2) won the Central New Jersey championship three consecutive years from 1922 to 1924 under Coach Benjamin W. Davis. Matawan's African-American pitcher Henry Schanck was edged out by Keyport High School in a 16-inning match in 1924. The Works Progress Administration (WPA) added a sports field at the high school in 1936.
In 1958, the Matawan High School Huskies football squad, led by Coach Barry Rizzo, won the Shore Conference Championship, losing only to Neptune. They defeated their rivals, the Keyport High School Red Raiders in a hard-fought Thanksgiving Day game, 6-2. Notable players on that Huskies team were the "Touchdown Twins", David Jones and Purvis Peeler.
The 1959 Huskies baseball team, coached by George Deitz, won the Shore Conference Championship and competed in the Group 1 state championships, losing in the first round. Their star pitcher, Carl Stephens, threw three no-hitters that season and was signed by the Los Angeles Dodgers, playing in their minor league system until an arm injury ended his career.
The boys' bowling team won the overall state championship in 1969.
The football team won the Central Jersey state sectional championships in Group IV in 1975; in Group III in 1988, 1991, 1992 and 2014; and in both 2009 and 2011 in Group II. In 2009, the football team won the Central Jersey Group II sectional title by a score of 28-12 against Manasquan High School in a game played at The College of New Jersey, marking the program's first sectional title since 1992. The team won the program's seventh sectional title in 2014 with a 27-7 win against Carteret High School in the Central Jersey Group III state sectional championship.
In 2009, the boys indoor and outdoor track and field teams took the Central Jersey Group II titles, marking the first time since 1996 since the boys team took the outdoor title, and the first time the indoor team had ever taken a state title. The indoor team won a second consecutive title in 2010, defeating second place Summit Senior High School by 56-42. In 2011, the outdoor track and field team won its third consecutive Central Jersey, Group II sectional title, edging Long Branch High School 80-77 for the victory.
Both the boys' and girls' track teams won their respective Group II titles in 2013 at the state indoor relay championships.
In 2014, the Matawan High School's boys track and field team won the B-North division championships and the Central Jersey Group II sectional champs, earning the team's sevenh sectional title, having most recently won in 2011.
Music has deep roots at Matawan. In 1895, the New York Press ran a statewide competition to determine the most popular new school in the budding New Jersey school system. Matawan returned the most coupons, defeating its nearest competitor by 40,000 votes, thereby winning a Chickering and Sons piano.
The Matawan Marching Huskies band won the national championships in Jacksonville, Florida, in 1977. They are led by band director Chris Hensel .
In the 2011 season, the Marching Huskies finished first in the Tournament of Bands (TOB) Group II Chapter X (Greater NYC Metro) Championships with a score of 93.0. The chapter title was the first for the band since 2006. They ended the season with a 3rd-place finish at the TOB Atlantic Coast Championships in Hershey, Pennsylvania with a score of 95.5, earning the Marching Huskies not only their highest-ever placement at the ACCs, but their highest score in school history.
Core members of the school's administration are:
- Michele Ruscavage, Principal
- Sean Cronin, Assistant Principal
- Frank Liotti, Assistant Principal
- Phil Tyburczy, Assistant Principal
- Mike Wells, Assistant Principal
- Monica Aksamit (born 1990, class of 2008), saber fencer who won a bronze medal at the 2016 Summer Olympics in the Women's Saber Team event.
- Jay Bellamy (born 1972), NFL safety.
- Michael Davino (born 1968, class of 1986), pro baseball player who played minor league baseball from 1989-92 in the Chicago White Sox and Milwaukee Brewers organizations.
- Mark D. Hellenack, 2004 NJ Lacrosse Foundation Hall of Fame inductee (part of US Lacrosse)
- Erison Hurtault (born 1984, class of 2003), Olympic sprinter who competed in the 400 metres at the 2012 Summer Olympics representing Dominica.
- Jim Jeffcoat (born 1961), professional football player for the Dallas Cowboys and the Buffalo Bills from 1983 to 1997.
- Charlie Rogers (born 1976), former NFL running back, wide receiver and kick returner.
- J. Michael Straczynski (born 1954), writer for television, film and comics, attended 1970.
- School data for Matawan Regional High School, National Center for Education Statistics. Accessed December 12, 2016.
- Matawan Regional High School, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 23, 2015.
- Matawan Regional High School, Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Secondary Schools, backed up by the Internet Archive as of March 15, 2012. Accessed March 26, 2015.
- Staff. "Top Schools Alphabetical List 2014", New Jersey Monthly, September 2, 2014. Accessed September 5, 2014.
- Staff. "The Top New Jersey High Schools: Alphabetical", New Jersey Monthly, August 16, 2012. Accessed December 2, 2012.
- Staff. "2010 Top High Schools", New Jersey Monthly, August 16, 2010. Accessed April 5, 2011.
- "Top New Jersey High Schools 2008: By Rank", New Jersey Monthly, September 2008, posted August 7, 2008. Accessed August 19, 2008.
- New Jersey High School Rankings: 11th Grade HSPA Language Arts Literacy & HSPA Math 2009-2010, Schooldigger.com. Accessed January 17, 2012.
- Federal Writers' Projects: Matawan, 1686–1936, pp 70-71.
- Donnell, Genevieve. "When American Legion Hall Served as School", Bayshore Independent, March 13, 1973, contained in booklet entitled Matawan Memories.
- Tiemann, Alice M., Township of Matawan, 1857–1957, pg 35
- League of Women Voters, Know Your Town: Matawan Borough and Township, 1965, pp 40-46
- Matawan Regional High School Expansion/Retrofit, SchoolDesigns.com. Accessed January 17, 2012.
- School Info, Shore Conference. Accessed March 9, 2008.
- League Memberships – 2016-2017, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed January 10, 2017.
- General Public School Classifications 2015-2016, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association, as of December 15, 2015. Accessed December 12, 2016.
- History of NJSIAA Boys Bowling Championships, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed December 27, 2016.
- Goldberg, Jeff. NJSIAA Football Playoff Champions, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 19, 2015.
- Rappeleye, Warren. "Huskies savor victory, look to 2010 season", Holmdel Independent, December 10, 2009. Accessed July 7, 2011. "No sooner had the Matawan High School football team completed its victory over Manasquan in the NJSIAA Central Jersey Group II championship on Friday when talk began about a repeat in 2010.... Coach Joe Martucci's team deserves to savor the school's first sectional title in football since 1992.... Matawan won a 28-12 decision in the game played at The College of New Jersey. The victory capped an outstanding 10-1 season for Martucci's team, which also brought home the Shore Conference's Liberty Division crown."
- Kratch, James. "2014 football finals: Matawan defeats Carteret, 27-7, for Central Jersey, Group 3 title", NJ Advance Media for NJ.com, December 5, 2014. Accessed December 28, 2016. "Freshman quarterback George Pearson threw for 198 yards and four touchdowns despite a persistent rainfall throughout the evening as Matawan defeated Carteret, 27-7, on Friday night in the NJSIAA/Sports Care Institute Central Jersey, Group 3 final here at Kean University’s Alumni Stadium.The sectional championship is Matawan’s seventh in its history and its first since it won Central Jersey, Group 2 in 2011."
- Morris, Tim. "Matawan wins CJ II indoor track crown", Independent, February 12, 2009. Accessed July 7, 2011. "Whether it was sprinting, running distance, throwing or soaring vertically, the Huskies scored points in all areas to capture the NJSIAA Central Jersey Group II State Sectional Indoor Track and Field Championship. The Huskies beat another Shore Conference team, Monmouth Regional, for the title, 59-43."
- Lambert, Jim. "NJ Boys Winter Track: Matawan edges Summit for Central 2 title", The Star-Ledger, February 14, 2010. Accessed July 7, 2011. "Summit, which received a remarkable performance from Mark Jones, left the meet in frustration, while Dylan Spadaccini of Matawan earned redemption at the NJSIAA/Star-Ledger Central Jersey, Group 2 Championships at the Bennett Center yesterday in Toms River.... Summit finished second to Matawan, 56-42, as Matawan won its second straight sectional title."
- Staff. "Matawan edges Long Branch to win CJ II track championship", Independent, June 2, 2011. Accessed July 7, 2011. "Matawan High School's boys track and field team captured its third straight NJSIAA Central Jersey Group II sectional title on Saturday. The win didn't come easy as the Huskies had to overcome a Long Branch team that was led by triple winner Miles Shuler-Foster. Matawan beat Long Branch by three points, 80-77."
- History of the NJSIAA Indoor Relay Championships, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed December 27, 2016.
- Lambert, Jim. "WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS: A look at every boys sectional track and field team winner", The Star-Ledger, May 24, 2014. Accessed November 23, 2015. "GROUP 2-MATAWAN (1ST SINCE 2011-7TH OVERALL)"
- Atlantic Coast GROUP 2 OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP NOVEMBER 6, 2011 HERSHEY STADIUM, Tournament of Bands. Accessed November 23, 2015.
- Main Office, Matawan Regional High School, updated September 28, 2015. Accessed November 23, 2015.
- Principal, Matawan Regional High School. Accessed November 23, 2015.
- Monica Aksamit, Penn State Nittany Lions. Accessed August 16, 2016. "Hometown: Matawan, N.J.; High School: Matawan Regional"
- Jay Bellamy, database Football. Accessed June 21, 2008.
- Michael Davino. Baseball Cube. Accessed June 21, 2008.
- 2004 Inductees
- Staff. "Matawan grad Hurtault serves as Dominica's Olympic flag bearer", Matawan Independent, July 31, 2012. Accessed August 16, 2012. "It's the thrill of a lifetime to compete in the Olympics. Matawan Regional High School graduate Erison Hurtault was already a veteran Olympian prior to the London Games."
- Jim Jeffcoat, database Football. Accessed November 27, 2007.
- Charlie Rogers, database Football. Accessed March 26, 2010.
- Plume, Kenneth. "Interview with J. Michael Straczynski", IGN, September 5, 2000. Accessed September 15, 2007. "No. I attended four different high schools: St. Benedict's High School in Matawan, New Jersey, Matawan Public School, Lennox High School in Lennox, California, and Chula Vista High School in Chula Vista, California."
- Matawan Regional High School website
- Matawan-Aberdeen Regional School District
- Matawan Regional High School's 2015–16 School Performance Report from the New Jersey Department of Education
- School Data for the Matawan-Aberdeen Regional School District, National Center for Education Statistics
- DigitalSports Matawan Homepage
- Matawan Football Alumni Foundation
- Huskies Sports Online
- Huskies football statistics