NV High Schools Named Apple Distinguished Schools

NV High Schools Named Apple Distinguished Schools
Posted on 02/03/2020

Both Northern Valley high schools have been recognized as centers of innovation, leadership, and educational excellence that use Apple Technology to inspire creativity, collaboration, and critical thinking.

Both Northern Valley Regional High School District high schools have been recognized as Apple Distinguished Schools.  This designation, awarded to each school separately, is in recognition of the innovative teaching and learning practices that the students, staff, and administration utilize daily.

Apple characterizes Apple Distinguished Schools as centers of innovation, leadership, and educational excellence, that use Apple technology to inspire creativity, collaboration, and critical thinking. They showcase innovative uses of technology in learning, teaching, and the school environment, and have documented results of academic accomplishment. Due to the stringent criteria and application process in place to receive this recognition, there are only 470 Apple Distinguished Schools worldwide.  Northern Valley currently represents the only New Jersey high school to earn this honor.  For five consecutive years, Northern Valley Regional High School District has provided Apple MacBook computers to all students and staff while emphasizing student-centered instruction, the use of transformative technology, and Universal Design for Learning. Northern Valley Superintendent James Santana feels these are critical for learning in the 21st century.

“More and more, our teachers are ensuring that students are at the center,” Santana explained.  “Our kids are engaging in real-world problem-solving and engineering solutions to tomorrow’s problems.  They’re connecting with experts across the globe.  In some cases, they’re literally video conferencing with astronauts.”

NVOT Social Studies teacher Christine Massaro, whose students do in fact video conference with astronauts, served on Old Tappan’s Apple Distinguished Schools team.  Regarding the application process, she explained, “I was in awe of all the different and innovative ways our teachers are using technology across the curricula. I think we are humble by nature as teachers and don't always showcase our amazing teaching strategies with technology. As soon as we asked for student examples from teachers, the results came flying in!”

NVD English teacher Dave Caminiti, who served on Demarest’s Apple Distinguished Schools team, elaborated: “The students and staff at NVD have transformed the school through the use of the MacBook Airs.  Our classrooms have become learning labs where we are now able to do more than we ever had before.  All the teachers and students have strived to put their MacBook Airs to the best possible use, and, as such, we have become a leader in educational technology.”  He added, of the application process: “We were able to see just how much our school's culture and learning environments have changed in the past years.  It seems as though each new class of students that enters our building finds another way to enhance their high school experience with their MacBooks.  We look forward to seeing what the future can bring.”

Earlier this year, Northern Valley Regional High School District was also awarded the highest level of recognition offered by Future Ready Schools - New Jersey, “Future Ready Silver District Distinction.”  When asked about the various recognitions being earned by the district, Superintendent Santana said, “I am honored to have the privilege to work with students and staff who are motivated by and committed to excellence in everything they do. For many years Northern Valley has been at the forefront of innovation and these many recent awards affirm that we are still leading the way.”


Northern Valley Regional High School District is a nationally recognized school of excellence located in northeastern Bergen County that serves students of all abilities from ages 3 - 21.  

If you would like more information about the innovative use of Apple technology at NVRHS, please contact David Janosz, NVRHS Supervisor of Technology Education: janosz@nvnet.org or Marc Cicchino, NVRHS Director of Innovation (cicchinom@nvnet.org).