March 2018


“Never let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.”

~John Wooden


Welcome to March!


We have much–and so many–to celebrate at Vernon Township High School:


Congratulations to Matt Kubik and Mike Kubik, two of our seniors, who were selected to attend the National Leadership Forum, hosted by the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA) in Washington, DC from February 2nd through 8th. They joined 3,500 amazing people from all over the world along with Rebecca Dorney from the Vernon Coalition and Conor Brennan, the Vernon Youth Coordinator. While there they had the opportunity to attend powerfully educational workshops, tour Washington, DC and meet some of our policymakers up close and personal! We look forward to sharing some of their newfound expertise in the upcoming weeks.


Congratulations to Michael Stefkovich, who will be honored as the VTHS Football Scholar Athlete dinner on March 22nd. Football Scholar Athletes are chosen from each of the secondary schools in Morris, Sussex and Warren Counties and are selected by their Athletic Directors and Football Coaches; they are selected not only for their football ability, but also because they are excellent scholars and have demonstrated outstanding school leadership, character and citizenship. By honoring them, they hope to encourage others to follow in their footsteps.

Maya Rakoczy will be honored at the 33rd Pass It Along Scholar Athlete Awards Banquet on Thursday, March 8th at Lake Mohawk Country Club in Sparta, NJ. At this banquet, students from throughout the area will celebrated and awarded scholarships. Congratulations, Maya!

Maya Rakoczy who has also been selected as the 2017-2018 Superintendents’ Roundtable Recipient for the Vernon Township School District. She will be receiving her Superintendents’ Roundtable Award at a luncheon at the Lafayette House on Friday, April 27th.

Our Ice Hockey Team concluded a great season with a heartbreaking loss to Wall High School in the quarterfinal round of the state playoffs with a score of 5-4. The team was led by seniors DJ Decker, Ryan Eilinger, Steven Gay, Pat Graham and Eric Loughren.

The Boys Ski Team repeated as State Public School Champions and were second overall in the state to Don Bosco Prep. Sophomore Kyle Hayes also won the Boys Giant Slalom State Championship. Kyle Hayes and junior Tea Brich will move on to compete in the Eastern Regionals.

Junior Jeremy Kayhart in his first year of wrestling took fourth place at the District Tournament along with Sophomore John Alvarez.


Using its second snow date on Friday 9th,  Chapter 1480 of the Tri-M Music Honor Society honored its new members: Mark Bosma, Cole Benkendorf, Jacob Buurman, Breanna Frasco, Bryce Grier, Emilee, Hamler, Brandon Lee, Emily McQuaid, Sieanna Munafo, Timothy Nuzzetti, Vasilisa Pallis, Amber Revelant, Valentine Travaille, Kendall Van Vugt and Colin Ziabakhsh. Second year students included Jacob Bergacs, Elisabetta Bracer, Matthew Charuka, Amanda Cueman, Bridget Fraser, Frank Incarnato, Elise Kastner, Matthew Losco, Audrey Perich and David Rusnak. Third year students included David MacMillan, Erika McNally and Ryan Shinall. Congratulations, one and all!


The Thespian Honor Society Induction  was held on February 13th; its newest members include Cole Benkendorf, Jess Carfello, Julia Chmielowiec, Tessa Heidt, Kylie Imbimbo, Hannah Kolonoski, Celeste Levy, Paloma Lupino, Emily McQuaid, David McQuillan, Sienna Munafo, Stephanie Rocco, Justin Shea, Rylee Smaldone, Kendall Van Vugt, Jaime Vitale and Reyna Whitty.


On Friday, February 16th, the VTHS cafeteria was transformed for the choir’s annual Broadway Night! The choir sang selections from Beautiful: The Carole King Musical and the Meistersingers performed solos and duets from various Broadway musicals of past and present. The following students performed beautifully: Angelina Biggio, Alex Bisanzio, Alysia Bosch, Mark Bosma, Jimmy Boss, Elisabetta Bracer, Emma Cahill, Amber Conklin, Heather Cordero, Amanda Cueman, Giana DeRosa, Emily Doumanis, Nathan Fitch, Leila Gonzalez, Blake Harrsch, David Iarkowski, Frank Incarnato, Allura Insetta, Elise Kastner, Kayla Landi, Sebastian Leak, Grace Logue, Matt Losco, Katelyn MacLean, Stephanie McCormick, Jenna Mengersen, Hailey Minter, Jessica Mitchell, Madison Muller, Sienna Munafo, Emily Norris, Olivia O’Brien, Rhett Presti, Ryan Spadafina, Sidney Sparta and Reyna Whitty.


On February 22nd, Mr. Jon Bruno and Mr. Mike DeVore had a most successful day at Bloomfield High School with some of our CFM-Engineering students. Twenty high schools came together to compete against each other. (Throughout the year, there are roughly 10 to 12 STEM League competitions at high schools throughout the state.) Vernon participated in two last year, and hope to compete in two more–with a total of three for this year. This particular event had the students build a rocket that takes into account maximum distance, accuracy and consistency with the contents of their task kit (every team receives the same kit). Each rocket must be able to launch consistently before and after the addition of a payload. The students went right to work and had numerous deadlines to hand in their prototype design and STEM connections, as well as testing their rocket until they were happy with it. The students had a very successful performance in front of the judges, along with high scores from all their design and STEM paperwork. Our students were honored with the “Outstanding STEM Achievement in the Application of Math and Physics” award at the conclusion of the event. Our team members consisted of Nolan Shade, Michael Stefkovich, Olivia Vizzini and Andre Vitrano. Congratulations, one and all!


On Friday, February 23rd, the Vernon Township High School Wind Ensemble, Jazz Express and the Symphonic Band joined forced to present the 41st Annual Pops Concert. The musical numbers and all performers will be made available via a link from the VTHS Digital Backpack.


On February 26th, the VTHS Mathematics Honor Society held an Induction for its newest members. Please see the Digital Backpack for the names of all of the officers and honorees.


The VTHS Choirs had a very successful experience with this year’s “Singing Valentines” fundraiser. Although we had a delayed opening, these talented students “sung their hearts out!” and brought smiles to everyone throughout the school. Thank you for supporting this endeavor.


On Tuesday, February 6th, award winning author of The Last True Love Story and co-author of All American Boys, Brendan Kiely visited VTHS. The day was filled with opportunities to meet and converse with the author, and/or participate in workshops on the writing process, creative writing, or thematic writing. Over 200 students from all grade levels discussed the writing process with Kiely, while others were inspired to write about cultural topics, such as racism and discrimination. All of the English teachers were also provided with the opportunity to work with this author, who taught English for ten years. It was a wonderful experience for everyone!



A new initiative developed by Sodexo continues to provide some of our culinary students with the opportunity to serve Asian food to the faculty, staff and students of VTHS once again during February. Our students gained some “real life” culinary experiences and we are looking forward to enjoying a delicious Waffle Bar on March 21st!


The high school is now well into the Third Marking Period for the 2017-2018 school year. Although there may be some adjustment due to the 8 snow days utilized this winter, the marking period is scheduled to close on or about April 5th. Please be sure to check the Parent Portal often and contact your child’s teacher and/or school counselor with specific questions as necessary. If you need assistance getting into the portal, please contact your child’s counselor.


Your child’s teachers and school counselors are in the process of completing recommendations for your child’s schedules for the upcoming year. Please call or email your child’s school counselor if you need assistance and/or clarification.



On Wednesday, February 7th, the Spring Sports’ Meeting was held for all aspiring athletes and their coaches. Be sure to log onto the Athletic Calendar on the VTHS website so you won’t miss any of the exciting sports action as we (optimistically) move into the warmer weather months!


A look ahead…


On Wednesday, March 7th, 6 students will receive a Certificate of Academic Achievement in Psychology at a Ceremony organized by Mr. Robert Chorney. Congratulations to Ailia L. Altunbilek, Michael N. Axiotes, Gabriella Colon, Emily V. Drake, Brianne C. Paragh and Jamie L. Sesak


Vernon Township High School proudly presents The New Mel Brooks Musical Young Frankenstein* on Thursday, March 22nd at 7:00 pm, Friday, March 23rd at 7:30 pm and Saturday, March 24th at 7:30 pm. Adults tickets are $12 online or $15 at the door. Student and Senior Citizen tickets are $8 online and $10 at the door. For tickets visit

            *may not be suitable for young children



The Senior Citizen Appreciation Dinner Theater (SCADT) will be held at 4:00 pm on Wednesday, March 21st, beginning at 4:00 pm. The snow date for this event will be Saturday, March 24th at 11:00 am. Please see the flyer on the VTHS Digital Backpack to see how you can help to support this wonderful annual event!



Please be sure to mark your calendars with this year’s PARCC testing dates* for the high school:


Tuesday, April 17th

ELA (grade 9)             ELA (grade 10)                        ALG2 (grades 11, 12)                GEO (grades 11, 12)


Wednesday, April 18th

ELA (grade 9)             ELA (grade 10)                        ALG2 (grades 11, 12)                GEO (grades 11, 12)


Thursday, April 19th

ELA (grade 9)             ELA (grade 10)                        ALG2 (grades 11, 12)                GEO (grades 11, 12)



Tuesday, April 24th

ELA (grade 11)             ALG1 (grades 9, 10)     ALG 2 (grades 9, 10)               GEO (grades 9, 10)


Wednesday, April 25th

ELA (grade 11)             ALG1 (grades 9, 10)     ALG 2 (grades 9, 10)               GEO (grades 9, 10)


Thursday, April 26th

ELA (grade 11)             ALG1 (grades 9, 10)     ALG 2 (grades 9, 10)               GEO (grades 9, 10)



Tuesday, May 1st                    PARCC Make-up Testing Sessions


Wednesday, May 2nd            PARCC Make-up Testing Sessions


Thursday, May 3rd                 PARCC Make-up Testing Sessions



*please note that the grade levels do not always correspond to some students’ courses for the current school year.



AP Testing will be held at Vernon Township High School from Monday, May 8th through Friday, May 18th. Please note that not every student will be testing every day. If you would like further information, the 2018 AP Exam Schedule can be found at


The NJ Student Learning Assessment – Science (NJSLA-S) for 11th graders  is scheduled  for Tuesday, May 22nd and Wednesday, May 23rd this year.


*These standardized testing sessions will not change the schedule for VTHS. We will operate on a regular, full-day schedule on each testing day, altering the daily schedule as necessary.



Board of Education Meetings – please note: In the event the Vernon Board of Education anticipates a lengthy Executive Session meeting, the Executive Session portion of the meeting will begin at 6:00 pm. The public portion of the meeting will not start before 7:00 pm.


            Work Sessions


Thursday, March 8th

Thursday, April 12th

Thursday, May 10th

Thursday, June 7th


            Regular Public Meetings


Thursday, March 15th            – Approve tentative budget for County Office

Thursday, April 26th  – Public Budge Hearing  and  Recognition of Mr. McCotter (VTHS                                                                                       Governor’s Educator of the Year) and Ms. Whiteman (VTHS Educational                                                                   Services Professional of the Year)

Thursday, May 17th    –

Wednesday, June 13th            – tentative based on Eighth Grade Advancement and VTHS Graduation


All meetings will be held at Lounsberry Hollow School, 30 Sammis Road, Vernon, NJ.



As we reach the end of the school year, please be sure to encourage your Senior(s) to look for all of the scholarship applications available in the guidance offices and/or on Naviance. There is scholarship money available and you don’t want them to miss out!



The VTHS Class of 2018 presents “Una Bella Fine.” This year’s prom will be held at Perona Farms in Andover, NJ on May 31st. Please be sure that your seniors don’t miss out on this memorable event!


As we move closer to Prom season, please take a moment to review the flyer from Project Self-Sufficiency announcing their FREE “Sister-to-Sister” Prom Shop. A copy of the flyer is available in the VTHS Digital Backpack.



As the weather gets warmer, black bears may begin to again make an appearance. Please visit for some safety tips. Thank you!


Be sure to visit the VTHS Digital Backpack for the Pass It Along flyer and help to Be the Change!



Please be sure to contact the school directly if you have any questions and/or concerns as we proceed with the 2017-2018 school year. We will be happy to assist you.


Thank you for your continued cooperation,


Pauline F. Anderson


Pauline F. Anderson