Montclair Campus (Ages 3-21) – NJ Special Needs School
The Deron School’s Montclair Campus offers a well-rounded program for learning disabled students, ages 3-21. While building academic and social/interpersonal skills, emphasis is placed on developing skills for independent living and career orientation.
Individualized Education Planning
Each student’s program is determined at their annual Individualized Education Plan meeting, attended by the student, their parent(s), teachers, providers of Support Services, and district Child Study Team representatives. Following review of the student’s present levels of functioning as well as their academic, behavioral, and social needs, the IEP Team develops a set of goals and objectives, teaching strategies and materials to be implemented over the course of the next year. A final (Exit) IEP meeting is conducted during the student’s last year, at which time future plans are discussed and arrangements are made to implement any necessary applications, etc.
Given the small class sizes and low student to staff ratio, The Deron School’s Montclair Campus affords each student with individual/small group instruction as well as close guidance as they step out into the world of work (see Transition). At the same time, both the class structure and activities are geared towards developing skills that will enable students to act independently.
Programs at the Montclair Campus are divided into three levels, with students assigned to each according to their academic abilities and interpersonal skills (see Admissions: Student Placement for further information). The curricular program for all students reflects the State of New Jersey Dept of Education’s graduation requirements. In addition to Mathematics, English, History, Science, Health & Phys Ed, students take classes in the Fine Arts, Life Skills and Transition. With academic classes pre-scheduled, students in the Departmentalized section have the opportunity to choose elective courses as well as
Daily Enrichment classes provide students with more in-depth study and greater skill development.
Extra-Curricular Activities – Sports, Music and more
A vast array of extra-curricular activities round out programs at Deron’s Montclair Campus.
The intramural athletics program (i.e. volleyball, softball, basketball, soccer teams and cheerleading) is a favorite and the Deron Tigers can boast many winning seasons! Students interested in the performing arts have the opportunity to participate in various vocal groups / acting class. Deron’s Chorus recently achieved a Superior rating at their annual choral competition. For those students who find enjoyment in the visual arts, there is Student Art Month, the NJ Craftman’s Fair as well as the satisfaction of taking home some truly wonderful pieces of art, textile, woodwork. In addition to the many field trips taken by various classes, the school takes students on an extended overnight trip every other year to destinations that are both educational and enjoyable for all. While the Student Council works to promote school spirit through all-school events such as holiday activities and “theme days”, they also conduct various unique fund-raisers throughout the year. Thanks, in large part to their efforts, Deron hosts a bi-annual prom – an event that students look forward to with great anticipation!
Special Education Support Services in NJ
Support Services are provided by a staff of three Social Workers, three Speech & Language Therapists, and a School Nurse. Students receive Counseling and Speech in individualized and/or small group settings as mandated by their IEPs. Additionally, Social Workers coordinate the IEP process, serve as liaisons with outside agencies, and provide graduating students with referrals and assistance in proceeding to their next placement.
Deron’s highly successful school-wide Positive Behavior Support Program provides students with a structured set of guidelines combined with consistent recognition and reinforcement of appropriate behavior. Based on positive reinforcement, students are awarded points throughout the day which, in turn, earn them privileges and rewards. Students respond well to this program which allows them to learn and grow behaviorally, socially and emotionally.
The Montclair Campus provides for shared-time placements wherein students attend a half-day for academic instruction, and attend one of the county Vocational-Technical schools for the remainder of their school day. Similarly, other students attend on a part-time basis, spending two-three days a week at Deron and the remaining days at an occupational center for job training development.
The Deron School’s Montclair Campus is housed in a well-maintained building with charm throughout. Visitors are welcomed upon entering the building with displays of student artwork, bulletin boards highlighting trips and other activities, and a trophy case celebrating the Deron Tigers\’ achievements. The large, well-lit classrooms provide ample space for the specialty courses while the newer section includes additional classrooms, offices for administration and support staff, as well as a custom-designed library / media center.