With two kids in high school, we chose to move to Hopatcong from a very highly rated, affluent Essex County town. We haven't regretted the decision for a moment. The school may be smaller, offering less options, but the personal attention my kids receive is invaluable. My kids participate in Football and Track and LOVE their teams. The kids in Hopatcong have been taught from very young to be accepting of those with disabilities, instead of simply shipping them all off to "special schools" where they don't have to interact with them. Hopatcong is educating their kids to be good citizens, good human beings.
My children are not at this school yet, and will go out of district before they're ever allowed in HHS, unless major changes take place. There are VERY few AP/Honors courses. There are barely any sports programs compared to local districts. The entire freshman sports program was eliminated. There is no field hockey; no volleyball; no ice hockey; no swimming; no lacrosse; no winter/comp cheer; no gymnastics. This school is constantly losing enrollment and while the inside of the school is modern and nice looking, the grounds are a joke. There's one football/track field (no turf), one baseball and one softball field and that's it. Everything else (soccer, tennis) has to be hiked through the woods to the grounds behind the civic center and that facility is awful. There's only one gym and the auditorium is tiny.
HHS is a poor high school. The leadership is disingenuine and self-serving. I know the district well and the people in the high school. The teachers are stifled, Guidance has been a disaster since the departure of a truly student-centered man, and students are not being uplifted. Teachers and students can immediately pick up on administrators who are only out for themselves and it has a tremendous impact upon morale. Even some secretaries are just plain mean and should retire or leave. The principal, vice principal, guidance director, two counselors, a long time guidance secretary and one particular main office secretary should leave. They are bad for the district on multiple levels.
I am currently a student at Hopatcong High and I agree with the fact that too much is going into the extra-curricular activities more than the academics. They have been class after class away and it is not fair. There are barely any AP & Honors classes. Many students are horrible and teachers do not seem to do anything about it when they should. It reflects how others see our school, especially when kids are right outside the building smoking.
Overall, schools are good. However, I feel that for the # of students in the town, we should have more schools. Agree that school should focus less on the sports extracurricular and more on the academic, e.g. math, science, arts.
I couldn`t disagree more those students that they leave in the classes that are disruptive are a horrible example to the rest of the student body. I rarely saw anyone being told to leave unless obscenities were said or physical contact was involved. I believe not enough people were taken out of the classes. Don`t blame the teachers and the school for your children`s actions no one can change them unless they want to be changed. The only way to do such is to have them see what could be if they keep up their bad behavior.
As a parent of student who has graduated through the H.S. system, and as someone who has been a substitute teacher there for a 6-month period, the school overall is doing a very good job. As a person very involved with sports & activities in town, there is quite a deal of attention given to these areas; but never too much ! If those parents commenting about other options available to their students, would have a group show interest in other areas, I'm sure the school would accommodate their wishes. And as far as the 'troublemakers' are concerned, I agree with more attention being shown to them. However, before throwing the 1st stone, maybe we can figure out why they are the 'troublemakers' to begin with...
Too much focus on extra-curricular sports-related activities. School should focus on offering a wider variety of activities for more students to get involved in. Also, the guidance department needs to be more involved in helping students and parents to plan for life after high school.
Hopatcong School District is comprised of 5 great schools. I spent 3 years as a board member & know from that experience the quality the district offers. Most of the parents that complain are uninvolved. We have some of the best teachers and administrators in the field of education who provide support for not only the brightest of students but also provide a higher level of support than most districts for those that students have special needs. I have had three children attend Hopatcong schools and all three have prospered from the experience. I rate the district at five.
I think that the school should spend more money on supplies for the student, add more room's to the school by maybe extending it. The teachers should focus on the students more instead of throwing them out of the rooms as soon as they feel like they don't want to put up with them anymore. Also the staff should have more activities for the students to participate in, instead of just cheerleading and sports, like culture/food clubs.