Principal's Message

Welcome to the 2021-2022 School Year

Northern Valley Regional High School at Old Tappan
Home of the Golden Knights

On behalf of the students, faculty and staff, I welcome you to Northern Valley Regional High School at Old Tappan where a most dedicated and caring group of professional educators positively impacts the lives of our students.

Despite the unprecedented challenging environment caused by COVID-19, NVOT continued to be a center of effective teaching and productive learning through the conclusion of the 2020-2021 school year. We were tested to great limits and united together to overcome many challenges. We will continue to build strong communication and relationships among students, staff, our families, and the administration. Our priority is to keep our schools a safe place physically and emotionally for our students and staff, and ensure that everyone is accepted regardless of any perceived differences. We will continue to do our part to end systemic racism, inequities, unconscious bias, and discrimination.

The tradition of excellence at NVOT is exemplified in the Class of 2021 that included multiple National Merit Commended students and a National Hispanic Scholar. More than 700 Advanced Placement Tests were administered to students across multiple grade levels in 31 subjects.  There were a total of 116 students recognized as AP Scholars as well as 15 students recognized with the AP Seminar Research Certificate. Over the past 4 years, the percentage of students who scored “3” or higher on AP Exams has ranged from 68% to 89%.

The Math League Team excelled at the county and state levels. The Technology Student Association captured multiple awards at the New Jersey State Conference. DECA and FBLA Clubs excelled at the virtual local and state competitions and had multiple students qualify at the national level. The Technology Student Association captured multiple awards, including 1st place finishes at the state level for its essay, Optimizing COVID-19 Distribution.

In Theatre Arts, the drama, The COVID Project, and the musical, A Chorus Line, were performed and viewed virtually. Additionally, the 2020 musical, Into the Woods, was recognized by the Montclair State University Theatre Department as a High Superior production and was named the best musical in the state. The Music Department continued to be recognized as an outstanding Music Community by the National Association of Music Merchants, and multiple music students were honored for their virtual performances in events, including but not limited to the New Jersey Solo and Ensemble Festival, American Protege International Talent competition, North Jersey Senior Regional Band, VIVO Music competition, Elite International competition, and the New York Laureate International Music competition.

The Visual Arts Department coordinated a virtual Fine Arts Festival, and a student was recognized for work at the Art Administrators of NJ Emerging Artists Exhibition. Co-Curricular clubs such as the Debate and Math Teams, Peer Mentors, Heroes and Cool Kids, and Winter Guard provided purposeful and positive opportunities. 

Golden Knights Athletics enjoyed an outstanding year highlighted by the following team championships: Fall: Boys Cross Country - Big North division; Boys Soccer - Big North division; Spring: Boys Golf - Sectional; Softball - Big North division; and Boys Track & Field - Sectional and Big North division. NVOT was recognized by the NJSIAA for the 4th consecutive year with a Sportsmanship Banner for being disqualification-free in 2020-2021.  

Students attended and participated in multiple virtual assemblies including Turning Adversity into Opportunity by Mr. Alhassan Susso, a virtual Black History Month program that highlighted the accomplishments of former congressman, Mr. John R. Lewis, and virtual Holocaust education presented by Mr. Paul Galan and Mr. Peter Somogyi. Virtual Veterans Day and Memorial Day observances also were presented. Additionally, virtual presentations were communicated on the topics of substance awareness education, bullying, diversity, and mental health/well being.

NVOT has been recognized in state and national publications. Scores on standardized tests such as AP, ACT and SAT are among the highest in the county and among the highest in the state within its District Factor Group. Approximately 95% of the graduates of the Class of 2021 are continuing their education at four and two-year colleges.

We at Northern Valley-Old Tappan are proud of the caliber of instruction that is offered. The high school will continue to investigate and implement teaching strategies that foster the development of critical thinking, problem-solving skills. We also will continue to promote a positive learning environment in which all students have equal access to learning as well as a respect and appreciation of diversity.

Northern Valley-Old Tappan’s educators are professionals who inspire students to be the best that they can be by translating their potential into successful lifetime skills.  We realize that we are entrusted with the ultimate responsibility, the education of a child, and are justifiably proud of our faculty and staff who motivate students to develop a consistent work ethic and achieve their goals.  The lifetime skills of effort, work ethic, perseverance, and integrity, skills that students are able to control, are consistently reinforced. It is our belief that when students concentrate on the process and control what they can control, desired results invariably will follow.

As we keep moving forward into the 2021-2022 school year, we will continue to Control What We Can Control, regardless of the challenges confronting us, at the Home of the Golden Knights!

Bruce R. Sabatini, Ed.D., Principal

Northern Valley Regional High School at Old Tappan

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