Dr. Neely Hackett, Superintendent of SchoolsSUPERINTENDENT’S MESSAGE
I firmly believe that all students have the ability to achieve at the highest levels of learning, if afforded the opportunity. In order for a District to successfully provide that opportunity, a mindset of continuous improvement is essential. In addition, a robust system of support and accountability, grounded in collaboration with district staff, provides the necessary guideposts to move toward excellence. My experience in executing strategic plans and implementing the supports necessary for continuous improvement has prepared me to collaboratively engage with the Voorhees community toward a common vision of educational excellence.
The Core Beliefs that guide my work toward improving student achievement are as follows:
1. Each student is entitled to a quality education that the entire community of invested stakeholders value, support, and enlarge by collaborating with one another.
2. Teacher quality is vital to engaging students in relevant, authentic tasks and improving student achievement.
3. Each student possesses the ability to achieve his or her potential in any learning environment when the adults provide the most appropriate supports for success.
4. The educational environment must be safe, respectful, and guided by skilled administrators who focus on advancing teacher effectiveness and student achievement.
I am committed to laser-like focus on academic success through a rigorous and relevant curriculum that empowers students to become productive, responsible, and self-directed learners and citizens. The curriculum must be designed to meet the individual needs of all students through authentic assessment, researched-based instruction, and responsive differentiation that encourages students to think critically and to connect all learning to life beyond the classroom.
We must be deliberate in staging the arena in which we expect our students to excel. Such an arena must be one that exudes a structured and safe environment conducive to learning. Having set the stage for excellence, we must place great emphasis on ensuring that our students are presented with a solid curriculum and a rigorous instructional program. Our curriculum must be aligned with the New Jersey Student Learning Standards and supported by resources and materials that are of high interest with a diverse perspective that represents the diversity of our student population. We must ensure that we employ highly qualified, competent, and caring teachers who present our students with relevant lessons that are rich with student-centered learning opportunities grounded in critical thinking skills to help students solve complex, real-life problems. We must capitalize on our students’ various learning styles and integrate technology to promote 21st century thinking and learning. We must conduct assessments that best measure student achievement and effectively analyze data to enable us to make decisions that will drive future instruction.
I am thankful and most appreciative for the opportunity to work with parents and community members and I am committed to continuing to build strong supportive partnerships with them. Parental involvement plays an integral role in improving academic achievement. The district will continue to partner with parents to provide on-going feedback on the effectiveness of services to students inside and outside of the classroom.
As the district’s educational leader, I look forward to strengthening partnerships with all stakeholders in our education community as we improve student achievement as well as the overall educational experience for our students.
Dr. Neely Hackett