Education

Montville’s “Twin” Schools Celebrate 50 Years of Education and Community

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Cedar Hill, in the Towaco section of Montville Township, is searching for people who attended the elementary school during the 1964-1965 school year. A year-long jubilee is planned with its “twin” school, Woodmont in Pine Brook, to celebrate 50 years of elementary education. Credits: Sue Marinello
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Woodmont, in the Pine Brook section of Montville Township, is searching for people who attended the elementary school during the 1964-1965 school year. A year-long jubilee is planned with its “twin” school, Cedar Hill in Towaco, to celebrate 50 years of elementary education. Credits: Sue Marinello
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MONTVILLE, NJ – It’s been 50 years since Cedar Hill and Woodmont Elementary Schools graduated the first classes that attended the “twin” Montville Township Public Schools. For the 2014-2015 school year, both schools hope to commemorate their beginnings with visits and stories from those who attended the schools during the 1964-1965 year.

“We are looking for graduates from that first class to help our students and teachers celebrate,” Cedar Hill Principal Dr. Michael Raj said. “In looking at 50 years of history and education, many valuable lessons can be designed.”

In addition to graduates, anyone who attended either school during the 1964-1965 school year is asked to come forward. Both schools are interested in learning about what the first year in brand new schools was like.

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“This is a wonderful educational opportunity,” added Woodmont Principal, Dominic Esposito. “We want to explore the history of our schools by examining the decades that have passed since they were built. Looking through a global lens within the context of our community, students have an opportunity to understand how history has impacted their community.”

Located in the Towaco and Pine Brook sections of Montville, Cedar Hill and Woodmont opened their doors in the middle of the 1964-1965 school year. Built at opposite ends of the township, the schools shared almost identical architectural plans.

“Cedar Hill and Woodmont were considered ‘twin’ schools,” President of the Montville Historical Society Kathy Fisher said. “Cedar Hill opened a month before Woodmont. Woodmont was built in 1964 and opened January 5, 1965. [It] was to open the same day as Cedar Hill but, they had labor problems and water shortage issues at Woodmont.”

To celebrate, Cedar Hill and Woodmont Elementary Schools are each planning a variety of educational events to highlight 50 years of learning. Additionally, family friendly events will be sponsored by the parent associations at each school. For the spring, in the spirit of “twin” schools, a joint Spring Fling is being planned.

Time capsules, history lessons and assemblies, as well as T-shirts, banners, and carnivals will mark the year-long jubilee.

Records of those who attended each school during that first year have been lost, therefore, the Montville Township School District is asking the community for assistance in locating individuals, articles, photographs and memorabilia from the time.

“We hope to compile a history of the schools, particularly for that first year,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Paul Fried said. “The principals and the teachers are planning to incorporate the schools’ histories into the curriculum.”

The public is invited to help celebrate 50 years of elementary education at Cedar Hill and Woodmont. In addition to stories and memories, there will be events and activities.

If you, or someone you know, attended Cedar Hill or Woodmont for the 1964-1965 school year, please reach out to learn more. For information, contact Susan Marinello, District Communications Officer, at 973-331-7100, ext. #2244 or e-mail communications@montville.net.

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