SANDY HOOK - Once again, MAST, the Marine Academy of Science and Technology, has scored among the best schools in the United States and New Jersey, maintaining the gold medal rating it has held for the past several years.
“And it’s all your fault!” Principal Earl Moore jokingly said to the faculty as he announced the standings as ranked by US News & World Report.
The 2018 best high school rankings were released this week and evaluate more than 20,500 public high schools. The magazine identified schools that best serve all students and assessed how prepared students are for college-level work. Schools are also recognized with gold, silver and bronze medals with gold indicating the greatest level of college readiness.
MAST was among the 23 schools across New Jersey that received the top honors. Only three schools from Monmouth County earned the gold rating besides MAST, High Technology Vocation High School in Lincroft, Biotechnology High School in Freehold, and Academy of Allied Health & Science in Neptune. All four schools are part of the Monmouth County Vocational School District.
New Jersey schools ranked 17th nationwide based on which states have the highest proportion of schools with gold and silver medals.
"Top-ranked schools succeed in three main areas: exceeding expectations on state proficiency tests, offering challenging coursework and graduating their students," said Anita Narayan, managing editor of Education at U.S. News, in the press release announcing the rankings.
“I am not surprised our Monmouth County Vocational Schools ranked among the leaders across the nation,” said Freeholder Deputy Director Lillian G. Burry. “The Board of Directors has placed a high emphasis on the importance of providing outstanding education to ensure our young men and women will be the outstanding and capable leaders of tomorrow.”
Burry said she was especially pleased to see MAST rank so high, and cites it as one more reason why completing the planned addition of a drill center, classrooms and office space is so essential. “The students at MAST accomplish all their educational standards while at the same time completing all the added responsibilities the NJROTC program imposes on them, and they have done it in spite of not even having a gym or interior drill space on premises. Monmouth County’s close work with the National Recreation Area and the rehabilitation of two buildings at historic Fort Hancock will enhance the capabilities for the students while preserving and enhancing historic buildings to continue appreciation of American history for all residents to Sandy Hook. I am proud of the role I am playing in ensuring the rehabilitation of the buildings, and am delighted the Park Service is working so closely with the Board of Education in accomplishing this great achievement within a short time.”
Moore, in addressing the faculty he has led for the past five years, added, “We wouldn’t be able to sustain the level of performance we have without the support of our Superintendent, the District’s Board of Education, and the County Freeholders. But what matters most is what happens in the labs and classrooms and out on the Blue Sea every day that makes MAST great. It’s teachers and students actively engaged in the learning process… that’s where the rubber meets the road.”