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The Public Schools
(From: The Minutes of Board of Education in 1957)
Nothing tells the story of Teaneck's growth as vividly as the expansion of the school system.
Three schools served the residents of this locality in the early nineteenth century. One, in the New Bridge district dates back to 1822 and met first in the chair shop of James Purdy. The teacher was an Irishman by the name of Gillfillan.
A second school was located in lower Teaneck and was known as the "little red school house." The third was located on the southeast corner of Teaneck Road am Forest Avenue. In 1854 the building was moved to the west side of Teaneck Road and finally replaced in 1869 by the "elegant structure" dear to the hearts of the people of Teaneck and known as the Old Town Hall. In this building the threads of Teaneck's history cross and recross. All movements, religious, educational and political started there.
When Teaneck Township was formed in 1895 the three schools described above were known as District No.5, lower Teaneck; District No.9, Teaneck; and District No. 10, New Bridge. These districts were relisted as 1, 2, and 3 respectively at the annual meeting held March 19, 1895.
The Board of Education at that meeting included, Jasper Westervelt, James B. Demarest, Henry J. Parker, Peter I. Ackerman, Walter Bound, Peter Raderman, Robert Stevenson, John H. Brower and John H. Ackerman.
The entire school population in 1895 numbered 221 for three schools. Forty years later 4,075 chi1dren attended school in eight public school buildings and 325 pupils are enrolled in the parochial school of St. Anastasia.
The New Bridge school with a small enrollment was abandoned early in the history of the Township and the pupils were transported to District No.2.
Old residents speak frequently of Alexander Cass who came to Teaneck in 1853 and served for about thirteen years as a teacher. He later became the first Superintendent of Public Instruction in Bergen County. Other teachers whose names appear in the early records are Joseph B. Miller, Esq., Adelaide Sherwood, Margaret Murray, Vida Myers, J. Edgar Waite, A. A. Hoover, William Banta and Walter DeClarke.
During the past twenty-eight years Teaneck has been engaged in an almost continuous program of school construction to keep pace with the increasing population. The oldest school now in use is School No.2, named Washington Irving and completed in 1907. School No.1, Longfellow School, followed in 1910. The minutes of the Board of Education reveal the completion of the others as follows: School No.3, Emerson - 1916; School No.4, Whittier- 1923; School No.5, Hawthorne - 1925; School No.6, Bryant - 1927; Teaneck High School - 1929; School No.7, Lowell - 1935; Junior High School wing now in the process of construction.
The elementary schools are strategically located throughout the township. There is an elementary school within easy walking distance in every section of Teaneck. This enables your child to avoid the danger of crossing many streets or walking long distances during bad weather. In these schools your child meets with experiences and high type of instruction that establishes not only thoroughness in the fundamental subject but also builds desirable habits, attitudes and appreciations which contribute to the complete development of your child. The plan of individual instruction prevails.
The Junior High School continues the close pupil supervision that is carried on in the elementary schools. The early adolescent period of your child's life is given over to exploratory, broadening and finding courses.
The Teaneck High School is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools and is approved by the New Jersey state department of education.
Real living depends not only upon the wise selection of a home or community, but upon educational opportunities available for your children. Teaneck offers more than thirteen consecutive years of educational activity, provisions being made for one year of Kindergarten, six years in the Elementary Schools, three years in the Junior High School and 3 years in the Senior High School. Teaneck invites you to consider the opportunities for your child.
Teaneck Public Library
840 Teaneck Road, Teaneck, NJ 07666
Tel.: (201) 837-4171, Fax: (201) 837-0410