Dear Editor: 

The purpose of this letter is to inform the community about a historic moment in Paterson.

Paterson’s John F. Kennedy Educational Complex became the very first high school in the entire state of New Jersey to receive the distinct designation of being a full-service community high school. 

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I had the opportunity to stand with fellow elected officials as we cut the ribbon to officially signify the grand opening of the program. I was filled with excitement as I listened to the speakers. I could feel a sense of pride and urgency in each speech made. 

I must thank our Congressman Bill Pascrell, Jr for his continued support of Paterson’s students. His efforts helped to secure federal funds for the program. The Congressman’s remarks were a reminder of what we must do as a district to ensure our student’s success.

I am particularly proud of the work that the Department of Family & Community Engagement has done. This work is not easy, but they manage to make it happen every time. 

Paterson has something to be proud of. A full-service community school will provide even what can’t be provided in a traditional classroom. With this full-service community school, the students will truly appreciate the overall experience. We must take a holistic approach when it comes to our students. This program will help do just that. 

What matters most is the overall health and wellbeing of each student. A child who feels loved, is properly nourished and is given the necessary tools to succeed will work harder in the classroom. 

Again, we as a city and school district can hold our heads up high. We have a ways to go but today was certainly a step in the right direction. 

Sincerely, 

Corey L. Teague

Corey L. Teague is a Commissioner on the Paterson Board of Education