• Washington Township Middle Schools

    Chestnut Ridge Middle School



    Parent Guide and Curriculum At A Glance

    The Administration and Staff of Chestnut Ridge Middle School welcome you to the 2017-2018 school year. We look forward to a year of bright beginnings and many student successes. We hope to provide an environment that fosters learning and a secure emotional haven for our students. On the following pages, we have offered information that we feel is important to both you and your child. Please keep this pamphlet on hand so that you may refer to it throughout the school year. Should you have a need for additional information, please do not hesitate to call us at

    (856) 582-3535 or check the CRMS website link by logging on to www.wtps.org.


    James Barnes – Principal

    Jennifer MacMillan– Assistant Principal


    Back To School Night ~ A partnership between school and home is essential to your child’s success.  Please come out to visit us on Back to School Night!

    Grades 6, 7, 8 – Thursday, September 7 - 6:30 PM

    Emergency Closing #803/Alert Solutions ~ In case of inclement weather, it may be necessary to have a delayed opening or to close school.  KYW Radio #1060 AM provides emergency closing information for our district; listen for our number 803.  School opening delays and closings are posted on the district’s website and on the Chestnut Ridge Middle School’s telephone answering system.   Through Alert Solutions, a web-based school communication system, general and emergency announcements will be delivered instantly to parents’ and guardians’ home phone number or voice mail using the district’s Power School database.  Please keep us updated of any changes to your contact information.  Please follow the below instructions for getting started on Alert Solutions also look on the CRMS E-Backpack for a “Welcome to Alert Solutions” letter.



    As part of our District’s continuing efforts to save money, conserve natural resources and increase overall efficiency, the Washington Township Public Schools are changing the way we think about paper and printing. We are going to utilize technology as a tool to increase our parental involvement and awareness while simultaneously decreasing costs.

    It is widely recognized that student achievement is positively affected by strong family involvement. We are actively adding resources to utilize available tools to improve the school-home connection.

    Below are some of the tools parents can use to get connected and stay connected with our schools and their children’s education:

    Get Connected with Alert Solutions

    Alert Solutions, a messaging system run through PowerSchool affiliate BLI Messaging, provides a portal that enables parents to log in and provide additional phone numbers and email addresses to the District. Given our District’s focus to rely on email communication, providing updated email addresses is critical.




    Parents also can provide the District with mobile phone numbers so we can send text messages through Alert Solutions. This will be used as an additional method of communication for important matters, such as emergencies, school closings and other changes to the school calendar.

    Log into your PowerSchool account and click on the Alert Solutions tab on the left-hand side. From there, using the “Preference by Message Category” section, you can select which types of messages you wish to receive via text. Your personal text messaging rates will apply.

    If you misplace your Power School login, you can contact your child’s individual school to receive it. You also may email your request to mpesyna@wtps.org , including your full name, your child’s name, your address, student ID number and phone number.

    Stay Connected with PowerSchool

    The PowerSchool student information system enables parents to access their child’s schedules and advisory (grades 6-12), report cards (grades 3-12) and progress reports (grades 3-12). This information is available online only and will not be mailed home unless parents opt out of the paperless option.

    View our PowerSchool FAQ/Help page for instructions on how to use the PowerSchool system. This can be found by clicking on the “Help” link in the top right-hand corner of your screen after logging into PowerSchool.

    Families who do not have Internet access should contact the office at your child’s school to receive correspondence via another method.

    Keep up to Date with Weekly eBackpack Visits Check out the District- and school-level eBackpacks weekly on the District website (www.wtps.org) for important information about District, school and parent-teacher group events, as well as Township, Parks & Recreation and Community Organization announcements.

    Teacher webpages and School and District Websites

    Our District and individual school websites are key locations to watch for announcements and information. In addition, many of our teachers utilize their personal webpage sites to post important class information like lesson plans and homework assignments. Check these out on a regular basis.

    Communication with CRMS

     We will send home a weekly Alert Solution to the email addresses listed in PowerSchool.  These announcements will contain important information about CRMS and the various activities.  I would also recommend that parents/guardians sign up for Remind to receive instant text messages from me throughout the year.  If you signed up last year, please do so again for the appropriate grade level.  Depending on your child’s grade level, please text the message below to the listed number.  You can also follow me on Twitter at @CRMSprincipal.



    Text Message














    Student 1:1 Laptop:

    • Students should charge their laptop each night and bring their fully charged laptop to school each day.
    • Student should carry their laptop in the case provided.
    • Middle School Student Support Hours are 7:45-2:50PM in Room 119
    • Technical support information is located on wtps.org/onetoone



    Attendance #582-5172 ~ Good attendance is directly linked to academic achievement.

    Please encourage your child to attend school regularly. Refer to the Student Handbook for the district’s attendance policy. If your child is absent, we ask that you call the school before 9:30 AM on the morning of the first day of absence. Upon your child’s return to school, please provide a parent note or doctor’s excuse. Level III absences are absences covered by a doctor’s note, lawyer’s letter, or absences due to religious holidays. You may request homework for your child for absences of three or more days.  Please call between 7:30 AM and 3:30 PM. Allow 24 hours for the gathering of the work and materials.  If you do not call for work, your child will still be afforded the opportunity to make up all class work, homework, tests and quizzes.  Make-up time is directly related to the length of the absence. For example, three days of absence equals three days to make up assignments. 

    On a daily absence basis, please check the teacher’s webpage.

    School Health Services – Healthy students learn better. The school nurse at Chestnut Ridge Middle School screens the students for barriers to learning  (hearing, vision, vaccine status), treats accidents and illnesses, administers medications, manages chronic illness,  monitors control and spread of communicable disease and supports educational success through IHP’s, IEPs and disaster plans. Keep the nurse informed of any changes in your child’s health status by calling the nurse at 582-3535 ext 5330 or email rcoleman@wtps.org. Visit the WTPS website or Mrs. Coleman’s webpage for all state and district wellness policies along with medical forms.


    Student Planner/Handbook ~

    Each Chestnut Ridge student will receive a student planner/handbook on the first day of school.  Students are expected to use this to log daily and long-term assignments. 

    You may monitor homework assignments by checking the assignment book every day, or accessing teacher or team webpages at wtps.org.  If you see that homework is not coming home regularly, please contact your child’s community leader or school counselor.  If needed,

    a replacement planner/handbook can be purchased for $3.00 in the main office.


    Cell Phones ~ Students are not permitted to use their cell phone during the school day.

    Students are permitted to have cell phones; however, they must be turned off during the school day.  Students using their cell phones will be disciplined and their phones will be confiscated.  


    Dress Code

    Chestnut Ridge Middle School is an air-conditioned facility.  The following items of apparel

    are examples of inappropriate attire:  short-shorts/skirts, ripped jeans, tank tops, flip-flops, see-through clothing.  If a child’s clothing is determined to be unacceptable for school, parents will be contacted to bring in a change of clothing for the day or the student will be restricted from classes for the remainder of the day. Please refer to the Student Handbook for the complete student dress code and consequences for its violation.


    Gum Chewing

    Gum chewing is not permitted.  Students will be warned, receive a teacher detention, and parent contact will be made if the gum chewing continues.  Our desire is not to punish, but to instill a sense of pride throughout the building. 




    Items dropped off for Students

    Students will be called at 10:33, 11:25 and 12:17 only.  This will help continue a positive uninterrupted educational process.  We appreciate your understanding and cooperation in establishing this important accountability procedure.



    After-School Activities

    Participation in extra-curricular activities helps to create a well-rounded child.  We encourage all of our students to participate in as many after-school activities as possible.  Permission slips must be signed by parents in order for students to participate.  Intramurals vary from season to season.  Students will be notified of current intramural activities via announcements, postings and the scrolling message board.  Intramurals begin immediately after school.  Students will be dismissed for the 4 PM late bus; walkers are permitted to ride the 4 PM late bus.

    Students participating in athletic related activities must have a physical completed and signed off by the CRMS nurse.  Information is located at www.wtps.org/Page/17252


    Extra Curricular Activities all three middle schools offer:

                                      Drama                Future Acts              Class Councils

                                      Yearbook             Musical                    Newspaper

                    Prep Club            Student Council        


    See our website for details and a complete listing of activities.

    Student Drop-Off & Pick-Up / Parking/New Traffic Patterns

    Students who are provided district busing are encouraged to ride their bus to and from

    school each day.  Parents who bring their child to school add vehicle congestion to the school grounds, thus posing an endangerment to student safety.

    Student, parent, and staff safety during arrival and dismissal continue to be major concerns at CRMS.  The volume of traffic at these times poses hazards and creates congestion in the driveway.  In response to those concerns, new traffic patterns will be instituted the first day of school.  The entrance and exit driveways will remain the same.  However, there will be a new pattern for both buses and car students.

    1. Car Students: Parents will no longer drop off children in front of the school. Instead they will drive around the back of the school.  Students can then enter the building at the cafeteria door or from the courtyard.  After dropping off their child, parents will continue around the back of the building and leave the school grounds using the driveway exit.  Students may be dropped off or picked up in front of the school after 8:00 AM until 2:30 PM.
    2. Buses: Buses will park in front of the school in double file. In the morning, the buses will be parked out front from 7:30-7:50 AM. During dismissal time, the buses will be parked out front from 2:30-3:00 PM.  All students who ride the buses will enter and exit the building through the three front doors or doors at the end of hallway.


    There is reserved parking with a few spaces for visitors in the front of the school. 

    When visiting the school, you can also park in the large parking area to the left of the school or behind the building. 


    Assessment This year our students will be participating in the PARCC (Partnership for Assessment for Readiness for College and Careers) Assessment in English Language Arts and Mathematics.  This assessment replaces the NJASK and will be administered once during the school year.  Our grade 8 students will still be taking the NJASK in Science. 

                      PARCC:  May 15, 16, 17, 2018          

                         NJASK – Science Grade 8 only – Dates are to be determined




    Academic Offerings
    All students in grades six, seven, and eight receive instruction in Math, English Language Arts, Social Studies, and Science. Students who demonstrate the necessary skill level are able to take Advanced Math and/or Advanced Science in grade seven, and Algebra and Advanced Science in grade eight. Basic Skills Instruction (BSI) is provided in Math, and English Language Arts for students identified as having skills below the district norm in these areas. Humanities is offered in grades six, seven, and eight for students identified as ready for enriched and accelerated instruction. This program is Social Studies based in all three grade levels.



    Physical Education and Health
    All students receive three marking periods of Physical Education and one marking period of Health each year.  Students must have a change of clothes for physical education; sneakers are required.  Clothing should be labeled with the student’s name.  Students must utilize the key controlled master lock system with the lockers in the boys and girls locker rooms to secure clothing and personal items.


    World Language
    Students in grades 6, 7, and 8 will receive instruction in their choice of French, German, or Spanish. The selected language will be studied for all 3 years.   In grade six, World Language and Computer Literacy will be offered for one full semester. Grades seven and eight will receive World Language instruction for a full year.


    Exploratory Cycles  
    Students who do not elect to participate in Band, Chorus, Orchestra, or Talented Art (Grade 8) will receive four marking periods of Exploratory Arts each year.  The Exploratory Arts are offered as a marking period class.  For specific dates, please refer to Important Dates listed on the next page.


    Grade 6:  Art, Keyboarding, Music Appreciation, and Invention and Innovation in STEM  
    Grade 7:  Art, Computer and Financial Literacy, Drama, and Introduction to Technology and                Engineering

    Grade 8:  Art, Computer and Financial Literacy, Drama and Engineering in Our World


    Students who participate in a music program (Grades 6, 7, 8) will take one Exploratory offering each year:
    Grade 6:  Keyboarding

    Grade 7:  Art

    Grade 8:  Engineering in Our World


    Eighth graders selected for Talented Art will take this course for the entire school year.



    Special Programs
    Band is an instrumental music course in which students are offered the opportunity to study music through performance of wind, brass, or percussion instruments.
    Chorus is a vocal music offering to develop musicianship, vocal technique, music literacy, and choral literature.
    Orchestra is an instrumental music course for string instruments.




    School Counselor / Communication – Phone Number 582-5173
    The Middle Schools provide three counselors for each school and a Student Assistance Counselor (SAC). Counselors meet with students individually, in small groups, and provide large group sessions. Listed below are the names of counselors in our Guidance Department:


    Mrs. Susan Kane          - Grade 6

    Mrs. Deana Leonard    - Grade 7

    Ms. Jaclyn Vernon       - Grade 8


    Mr. Alex Illas - Student Assistance Counselor



    Open communication between the home and the school is another key to student success. Your child’s teachers may contact you, by telephone or e-mail, to discuss issues relative to your child.  You may be requested to come into school for an individual teacher or “community” conference.  This request may be initiated by your child’s community leader or school counselor.  We encourage you, the parents, to contact the school should you have a question or concern.  There is no issue that is too small or insignificant. You may call for a specific teacher or your child’s counselor.

    Student Progress / Grading Scale

    In addition to the quarterly report card, each student and parent is given access to our PowerSchool Program.  Parents and students are encouraged to view their child’s grades via PowerSchool.  Parents can be provided with details and access passwords through our guidance office.  The PowerSchool program will keep you well informed on your child’s achievements.  For further details, please refer to the Important Dates below.   

    Report cards are issued quarterly.  Students will be awarded numerical grades on a zero to 100 point scale.  Students achieve Honor Roll by carrying all A’s and B’s on their report card.  Principal’s List recognition occurs when students receive an “A” in each subject.  Please note that Physical Education, Health, Music and Exploratory Arts classes are also considered for both Honor Roll and Principal’s List.  A = 93-100, B = 85-92, C = 77-84, D = 70-76, F = 69 and below. 


    Important Dates


    Mid-Marking Period:       October 4, December 14, February 28, May 9

    Marking Period End:       November 3, January 26, April 6, June 11

    Report Cards:                November 15, February 7, April 18, June 15 (tentative)


    • Progress Reports will no longer be mailed unless requested through the

    School Counselor Office.