Passaic Valley Regional High School

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Passaic Valley Regional High School District
100 East Main Street
Little Falls, NJ 07424

United States
Coordinates40°52′42″N 74°13′12″W / 40.878468°N 74.220007°W / 40.878468; -74.220007Coordinates: 40°52′42″N 74°13′12″W / 40.878468°N 74.220007°W / 40.878468; -74.220007
District information
SuperintendentDr. JoAnn Cardillo
Business administratorColin Monahan
Students and staff
Enrollment1,301 (as of 2015-16)[1]
Faculty106.0 FTEs[1]
Student-teacher ratio12.3:1[1]
Other information
District Factor GroupFG
Ind. Per pupil District
%± vs.
1ATotal Spending$19,11512$18,8911.2%
1Budgetary Cost13,8071015,592-11.4%
2Classroom Instruction8,014148,807-9.0%
6Support Services1,38812,294-39.5%
8Administrative Cost1,488161,592-6.5%
10Operations & Maintenance2,134311,9549.2%
13Extracurricular Activities77017873-11.8%
16Median Teacher Salary68,5752671,726
Data from NJDoE 2014 Taxpayers' Guide to Education Spending.[2]
*Of 9-12 districts with any number of students. Lowest spending=1; Highest=47
Passaic Valley Regional High School
Passaic Valley Regional High School is located in Passaic County, New Jersey
Passaic Valley Regional High School
Passaic Valley Regional High School
Passaic Valley Regional High School is located in New Jersey
Passaic Valley Regional High School
Passaic Valley Regional High School
Passaic Valley Regional High School is located in the US
Passaic Valley Regional High School
Passaic Valley Regional High School
TypePublic high school
PrincipalRay Rotella
Asst. principalsJared Fowler
David Settembre
Color(s)     Green and
Athletics conferenceBig North Conference
Team nameHornets[3]

Passaic Valley Regional High School is the name of both a public school district and regional high school for students in ninth through twelfth grades from a district comprising Little Falls, Totowa and Woodland Park, three communities in Passaic County, New Jersey, United States.[4][5][6][7]

As of the 2015-16 school year, the school had an enrollment of 1,301 students and 106.0 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 12.3:1. There were 339 students (26.1% of enrollment) eligible for free lunch and 92 (7.1% of students) eligible for reduced-cost lunch.[1]

The district is classified by the New Jersey Department of Education as being in District Factor Group "FG", the fourth highest of eight groupings. District Factor Groups organize districts statewide to allow comparison by common socioeconomic characteristics of the local districts. From lowest socioeconomic status to highest, the categories are A, B, CD, DE, FG, GH, I and J.[8]

The Passaic Valley Board of Education consists of nine members, with three members elected from each municipality. The board generally meets on the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month during the school year and once a month during the summer.[9]

Awards, recognition and rankings[edit]

The school was the 225th-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.[10] The school had been ranked 202nd in the state of 328 schools in 2012, after being ranked 144th in 2010 out of 322 schools listed.[11] The magazine ranked the school 170th in 2008 out of 316 schools.[12] The school was ranked 166th in the magazine's September 2006 issue, which surveyed 316 schools across the state.[13] ranked the school 192nd out of 381 public high schools statewide in its 2011 rankings (a decrease of 4 positions from the 2010 ranking) which were based on the combined percentage of students classified as proficient or above proficient on the two components of the High School Proficiency Assessment (HSPA), mathematics (79.1%) and language arts literacy (92.3%).[14]

Extracurricular activities[edit]

Passaic Valley participates in "24 Hours Around the World" in which students teleconference with other nations for 24 hours.[15]

Passaic Valley's Drama Department is a part of the North Jersey Metro Cappies, a student critic program that introduces students to the world of theater journalism. They run a summer program where students in grades 9-12 all around the NJ/NY area can work together on a performance.


The Passaic Valley Regional High School Hornets[3] compete in the Independence Division of the Big North Conference, following a reorganization of sports leagues in Northern New Jersey by the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association.[16] With 963 students in grades 10-12, the school was classified by the NJSIAA for the 2015-16 school year as North II, Group III for most athletic competition purposes, which included schools with an enrollment of 778 to 1,062 students in that grade range.[17] In the 2009-10 school year, the school competed in the North Jersey Tri-County Conference, which was established on an interim basis to facilitate the realignment.[18] Prior to the realignment, the school had participated in the Skyline Division of the Northern Hills Conference.[19] Passaic Valley's school colors are green and white.[3] The school mascot, the Hornet, was derived by vote of the first class from the Green Hornet radio series popular in the 1940s.[citation needed]

The school is the host school / lead agency for a joint ice hockey program with Cedar Grove High School, under an agreement that expires at the end of the 2016-17 school year.[20]

The boys' cross country team won the state group championships in 1961 (Group III) and 1962 (Group IV). The school's Jesse Mizzone was the individual champion in Group III in both 2000 and 2001.[21]

The boys' bowling team won the overall state championship in 1973.[22]

The football team won the North I Group IV state championships in 1975, 1979, 1980 and 1986.[23] In 2006, the football team beat Wayne Valley High School during the regular season and again in the playoffs, making it to the semi-finals before losing to defending North I Group III champions, Wayne Hills High School in the semifinal round.[24] Under first year coach Al Capello, the Hornets made it to the Group 3 Section 2 state championship at Giants Stadium on December 4, 2009, losing to West Morris Mendham High School by a score of 28-19.[25]

The field hockey team won the North I Group IV state sectional championship in 1976, 1977, 1981, 1984, 1986 and 1987.[26] In 2005 and 2006, the girls' field hockey team won back-to-back county championships led by Coach Cheryl Grande, before repeating as county champion in 2009, defeating Wayne Hills High School in the final game in all three championship seasons.[27]

The wrestling team won the North I Group IV sectional title in 1981, the North II Group II title in 2005 and the North II Group III title in 2010.[28]

In 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010, the girls' varsity gymnastics team won the county championships, led by Coach Jenai Agosta.[29] No other team in the 24 years of county championships has won the championship in four consecutive seasons.[30]

Alexis (Missy) Arena continues to hold the gymnastics all-time state record for All Around (AA) scoring with a 37.95 set in 2009. Arena's score breaks the previous mark of 37.325 by Passaic Valley's own Jackie Friscia in 2006. The meet dates to 1986. Arena also holds the 2010 New Jersey State beam Champion title with a 9.475, she placed third on vault with a 9.575 and fifth in the all-around with a 37.25.[31]

In 2007, the boys' basketball team won the North I, Group III state championship, defeating Wayne Valley High School by 60-48, in a game played at Passaic County Technical Institute. The win was their first ever sectional championship in school history and came in Head Coach Rob Carcich's third season. The Hornets also advanced to the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association state championship Game held at the RAC at Rutgers University.[32][33] The boys' basketball team returned to the sectional final in 2011, this time losing to Teaneck High School on March 8, 2011.[34] They returned to the Sectional final again in 2008 losing once again to Teaneck who was ranked #3 in the state at the time. The team had a record of 150-85 in the previous nine seasons.

In 2007, the varsity baseball team, led by Head Coach John Mazzo, won the Passaic County Championship with a 4-2 victory over Passaic County Technical Institute, the team's third title and their first since repeating in 1998 and 1999.[35] In 2010, they advanced to the Passaic County final, losing to Wayne Valley High School by a score of 5-4.[36]

In 2007, George Abyad won the Penn Relays discus championship at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.[37]

In 2008, the boys' ice hockey team coached by Gary Steele captured their first Nardello Cup, 3-2 against River Dell Regional High School.[38]

In the 2009 spring season, senior Gerardo Valenzuela of the boys' tennis team won the County Championship at 2nd Singles.[39]

In Fall 2009, the Marching Band won 2nd Place against six other bands in the Group 2A division at the Yamaha Cup competition that was held in Giants Stadium. In Fall 2011, the Marching Band won 1st place against four other bands in the Group 3A division at Verona High School. In Fall 2016, The Passaic Valley Marching Band placed 4th at the USBands state championship for group 2A.[citation needed]

In the 2009-2010 season the Hornets Wrestling Team captured the state sectional championship by beating Roxbury in the finals. Then they captured the District 13 Tournament championship. In 2012 again they were able to get the District 13 Tournament championship.


Core members of the district's / school's administration are:[40][41][42]

  • Dr. JoAnn Cardillo, Superintendent
  • Colin Monahan, Business Administrator / Board Secretary
  • Ray Rotella, Principal
  • Jared Fowler, Assistant Principal of Humanities
  • David Settembre, Assistant Principal of Discipline

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d School data for Passaic Valley Regional High School, National Center for Education Statistics. Accessed February 12, 2018.
  2. ^ Taxpayers' Guide to Education Spending April 2013, New Jersey Department of Education. Accessed April 15, 2013.
  3. ^ a b c d Passaic Valley High School, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 23, 2015.
  4. ^ Passaic Valley Regional High School 2016-17 Report Card Narrative, New Jersey Department of Education. Accessed February 19, 2018. "Comprising the communities of Little Falls, Totowa, and Woodland Park, the regional district, is served by Passaic Valley Regional High School."
  5. ^ District Information, Passaic Valley High School, backed up by the Internet Archive as of February 14, 2008. Accessed October 8, 2018. "The regional district which is served by Passaic Valley High School is comprised of the communities of Little Falls, Totowa Borough and Woodland Park."
  6. ^ 2004 New Jersey Legislative District Data Book, Rutgers University, Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, December 2004, p. 211.
  7. ^ West Paterson no more, The Record, November 5, 2008. Accessed November 5, 2008.
  8. ^ NJ Department of Education District Factor Groups (DFG) for School Districts, New Jersey Department of Education. Accessed September 21, 2014.
  9. ^ Board of Education, Passaic Valley High School. Accessed September 21, 2014.
  10. ^ Staff. "Top Schools Alphabetical List 2014", New Jersey Monthly, September 2, 2014. Accessed September 5, 2014.
  11. ^ Staff. "The Top New Jersey High Schools: Alphabetical", New Jersey Monthly, August 16, 2012. Accessed September 19, 2012.
  12. ^ Staff. "2010 Top High Schools", New Jersey Monthly, August 16, 2010. Accessed February 17, 2011.
  13. ^ "Top New Jersey High Schools 2008: By Rank", New Jersey Monthly, September 2008, posted August 7, 2008. Accessed August 19, 2008
  14. ^ School Overview; Click on "Rankings" for 2003-11 HSPA results, Accessed March 11, 2012.
  15. ^ Around the World
  16. ^ League & Conference Affiliations 2016-2017, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed January 10, 2017.
  17. ^ General Public School Classifications 2015-2016, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association, as of December 15, 2015. Accessed December 12, 2016.
  18. ^ League Memberships - 2009-1010, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association, backed up by the Internet Archive as of July 24, 2011. Accessed September 20, 2014.
  19. ^ Home Page, Northern Hills Conference, backed up by the Internet Archive as of January 28, 2011. Accessed December 15, 2014.
  20. ^ NJSIAA 2017 - 2019 Co-Operative Sports Programs, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed February 12, 2018.
  21. ^ 2016 Cross Country State Group Championship Program, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed January 15, 2017.
  22. ^ History of NJSIAA Boys Bowling Championships, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed January 15, 2017.
  23. ^ Goldberg, Jeff. NJSIAA Football Playoff Champions, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 19, 2015.
  24. ^ NJSIAA 2006 Football - North I, Group III, accessed December 6, 2006.
  25. ^ Hague, Jim. "WEST MORRIS CAPTURES FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP: North 2, Group III Championship", Daily Record (Morristown), December 4, 2009. Accessed June 20, 2011. "Burton carried the ball 16 times for 158 yards and scored a touchdown, returned a kickoff 80 yards for a touchdown and threw a 47-yard touchdown pass, leading West Morris to a 28-19 victory over Passaic Valley in the NJSIAA North Jersey Section 2, Group III championship game at Giants Stadium."
  26. ^ History of the NJSIAA Field Hockey Championships, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed January 15, 2017.
  27. ^ Staff. "Passaic Valley's Grande hits milestone", Wayne Today, October 29, 2009. Accessed June 20, 2011. "Grande's first County title came in 2005 with a thrilling 3-2 win, on strokes, over Wayne Hills. The following year, the Hornets repeated as County champions by winning another close game against Wayne Hills. After failing to reach the finals in 2007 and 2008, Passaic Valley made a spirited run in this year's tournament. Coming from the fourth seed, the team defeated fifth seeded West Milford, and then stunned the two-time defending champion, Pompton Lakes, in the semifinals before stopping an undefeated Wayne Hills club in the final."
  28. ^ History of the NJSIAA Team Championships, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed January 15, 2017.
  29. ^ Staff. "NJ Gymnastics: Missy Arena leads Passaic Valley to Passaic County Championships title", The Star-Ledger, November 1, 2010. Accessed June 20, 2011. "Senior Missy Arena posted first-place scores on vault (9.375) and beam (9.0.) and Dominique Brown, Jessica Burden and Ali Fischbach delivered timely performances as Passaic Valley amassed 103.75 points to capture its fourth consecutive Passaic County Championships title Monday in West Milford."
  30. ^ Passaic County Gymnastics History, Passaic County Gymnastics Association. Accessed June 20, 2011.
  31. ^ Smith, Kate. "NJ Gymnastics: Missy Arena of Passaic Valley wins state beam title", The Star-Ledger, November 13, 2010. Accessed June 20, 2011. "Although Arena was one of the earlier competitors on beam, her score of 9.475 held up, earning her the state balance beam title Saturday at the NJSIAA/The Star-Ledger individual finals at Montgomery."
  32. ^ Zagoria, Adam. "Title worth the wait -- Passaic Valley secures first sectional crown", The Record (Bergen County), March 7, 2007. Accessed May 31, 2016. "Three years ago, Joe Castro and the Passaic Valley boys' basketball team were mired in a 40-game losing streak. Now, after a remarkable turnaround, they are celebrating the school's first North 1, Group 3 championship. Castro put on a magnificent display, piling up 17 points, 11 assists, three rebounds and two steals as the No. 7-seeded Hornets defeated their archrival, No. 9 Wayne Valley, 60-48, before a capacity crowd at Passaic Tech."
  33. ^ 2007 Boys' Basketball - North I, Group III, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed March 7, 2007.
  34. ^ Idec, Keith. "Teaneck defeats Passaic Valley for North 1, Group 3 title", The Record (Bergen County), March 9, 2011. Accessed June 20, 2011. "Members of the Teaneck boys' basketball team didn't do much smiling and jumping around after winning the North 1, Group 3 title Tuesday night. They weren't overconfident or disrespectful to Passaic Valley, the team the Highwaymen defeated, 64-40, to capture Teaneck's second sectional title in three years."
  35. ^ Baseball Tournament History, Passaic County Coaches Association. Accessed June 20, 2011.
  36. ^ Idec, Keith. "Wayne Valley rallies to win Passaic County Tournament", The Record (Bergen County), May 31, 2010. Accessed June 20, 2011. "The junior center fielder crushed a solo homer over the short porch in right field in the top of the sixth, before blasting an even longer two-run shot in the seventh to lead fifth-seeded Wayne Valley to a 5-4 victory over second-seeded Passaic Valley in the Passaic County Tournament final."
  37. ^ 304 HSB Discus Throw Championship, Penn Relays. Accessed June 9, 2007.
  38. ^ Vasquez, Andy. "Goal-oriented victory -- Passaic Valley holds off River Dell to capture title", The Record (Bergen County), February 26, 2008. Accessed June 20, 2011. "It was more nerve-wracking than dominating, but the Passaic Valley hockey team captured its first Nardello Cup title Monday night. The No. 1 seeded Hornets beat River Dell, 3-2, in a close game at South Mountain Arena that wasn't decided until, literally, the final second."
  39. ^ 2009 Boys' Tennis, Passaic County Coaches Association. Accessed January 7, 2012.
  40. ^ 2017-2018 Student Handbook, Passaic Valley High School. Accessed March 14, 2018.
  41. ^ New Jersey School Directory for Passaic County, New Jersey Department of Education. Accessed December 29, 2016.
  42. ^ Passaic County 2016-17 Public School Directory, Passaic County, New Jersey. Accessed January 15, 2017.
  43. ^ Behrens, David. "THE ART OF WONDER / From performing death-defying stunts to launching readers of his new book on an old-fashioned treasure hunt, David Blaine delights in surprises", Newsday, November 7, 2002. Accessed September 18, 2007. "Later, they moved to New Jersey, where he attended Passaic Valley High School in Little Falls."
  44. ^ Caldera, Pete. "Sniffen Has His Act Together after Football", The Record (Bergen County). Accessed October 8, 2018. "This wasn't the career that Jeff Chase envisioned at Passaic Valley in the mid '80s. But here he is, in the company of Tom Cruise, shooting a scene with Paul Giamatti, standing on a red carpet with Donald Sutherland. Back in West Paterson and Totowa, he was Jeff Sniffen, a high school tight end and basketball player growing into an agile and affable 6-foot-7, 300 pound man."
  45. ^ Sharkey, Joe. "Their Son, the Writer, Finally Tells All", The New York Times, June 2, 1996. Accessed March 11, 2012. "At Passaic Valley High School, he was undoubtedly the only boy nicknamed Phyllis, and probably the only one with his own Cuisinart."
  46. ^ Beckerman, Jim. "Ex-Totowa resident a shaper of Star Trek", The Record (Bergen County), September 8, 2016. Accessed September 12, 2016. "'That was kind of the only way at the time,' says Fontana, who was born in Sussex, moved to Totowa a year later, and lived there for the next 19 years.... Which is why Fontana, though she had early dreams of being a novelist, majored in business – first at Passaic Valley High School where she graduated in 1957, and then at Fairleigh Dickinson University (at the now-defunct Rutherford campus) where she graduated in 1959 with an Associate in Arts degree, Executive Secretarial major."
  47. ^ D'Uva. Nancy. "Boys' Soccer: Totowa's Gurrieri working with U.S. Team", Wayne Today, September 11, 2013. Accessed October 12, 2015. "Totowa's Kyle Gurrieri played soccer at Passaic Valley High School his freshman year before accepting the invitation to the U.S. Soccer Under-17 Men's Residency Program for the 2013 fall semester."
  48. ^ Iannazzone, Al. "Little Falls' Bobby Marks a key to Nets' future", The Record (Bergen County), July 18, 2010. Accessed October 7, 2016. "Armed with a computer, calculator, spreadsheet and the Collective Bargaining Agreement, Marks has been the behind-the-scenes backbone of the Nets' basketball department... But the former All-Northern Hills Conference football and tennis player at Passaic Valley wasn't satisfied."
  49. ^ Margolin, Josh; and Sherman, Ted. "Arrests shine spotlight on an unknown crime fighter", The Star-Ledger, August 2, 2009. Accessed May 18, 2013. "He played football for Passaic Valley Regional High ('I wasn't anything great, but it was fun') and then went on to Rutgers University, where he majored in history, and then New York University Law School, where he was a member of the law review."
  50. ^ Biography, Accessed December 2, 2017. "Michael Peter Smith was born in South Orange, New Jersey in September of 1941 and raised in the area, attending Catholic schools later referenced in a few of his songs.... I sang bass with an a capella doowop group in high school (Passaic Valley Regional, in Little Falls, New Jersey)."

External links[edit]