Top Stories

May 17, 2017

Montville Youth "Plays" it Forward

BoyMONTVILLE, NJ – When Ryan Abfier wanted a mitzvah project, or good deed, for his Bar Mitzvah, he turned to something he loves. To read more click the following words, "click here"

Changes in Store for Montville Schools' Administration

BoardpeopleMONTVILLE, NJ – Several changes in district administration were detailed on the Montville Township Public Schools Board of Education meeting agenda on May 2, although they were not technically announced. To read more click the following words, "click here"

Montville Township Police Aid in Tri-Town Chase

CopcarMONTVILLE, NJ – Montville Township Police officers aided in the pursuit of an alleged drunk driver who led Morris County Park Police across three towns in a disabled vehicle before his arrest. To read more click the following words, "click here"

Townwide Cleanup Makes Montville Sparkle

CleaningMONTVILLE, NJ – If the township looks a little spiffier lately, it’s because more than 20 groups have been hard at work over the past few weeks cleaning the roads, properties and parks as part of the town’s annual celebration of Earth Day. To read more click the following words, "click here"

Burglary Reported in Montville Township on Monday

CopssssMONTVILLE, NJ - The Montville Township Police responded to investigate a burglary at Don Pepe Steak House in the Pine Brook section of Montville on Monday, according to Captain Andrew Caggiano. To read more click the following words, "click here"

Michael Pasciuto named next principal of Robert R. Lazar Middle School in Montville, NJ

Michael Pasciuto headshotMontville Board of Education unanimously approved appointment at May 16 meeting

Montville Township, New Jersey – The members of the Montville Township Public Schools Board of Education unanimously approved the hiring of Michael Pasciuto for the position of Principal of Robert R. Lazar Middle School. The meeting was held on May 16, 2017.

Pasciuto is coming to Montville Township after two years of serving as the Assistant Principal at Glen Rock High School in Glen Rock, New Jersey. He will assume the helm at Lazar just after the end of the academic year.

Prior to his work in Glen Rock, Pasciuto served as the Supervisor of Social Studies K-12 in the Cresskill School District from 2011 to 2015 and as a social studies teacher in grades 7 through 12 from 2008 to 2011.  He was named the New Jersey Governor’s Teacher of the Year at Cresskill Middle School for the 2009 to 2010 school year. 

A graduate of Dickinson College, Pasciuto received a Masters Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Missouri and a Masters Degree in Educational Leadership from Thomas Edison State University.

“I am extremely pleased to recommend to the Board of Education that Michael Pasciuto be appointed to the position of Principal of Robert R. Lazar Middle School,” said Superintendent Dr. René Rovtar at the Board of Education meeting.

Rovtar noted that the search for a new Lazar Principal was a very thorough process. 

“We had 97 applicants for the position. The initial screening interviews resulted in the selection of 8 candidates to bring before the full interview committee. The interview committee was comprised of parents, teachers and administrators from Lazar and across the district,” Rovtar said.

From 2010 to 2014 Pasciuto also served as a three-season, Boys and Girls Track and Field and Cross Country coach at Cresskill High School. He was named Coach of the Year multiple times by several different organizations including: The Record, BCSL/NJIC Division, NJIC Patriot Division and BCWCA.

Following the appointment, Montville Township Board of Education President Dr. Matthew Kayne officially welcomed Pasciuto to the district.

“I know I speak for the entire board when I say we are all very excited to have you join our outstanding school district,” Kayne said.

Pasciuto is slated to step into his new position in July.

“I am confident that Michael will be an excellent addition to the Lazar Middle School and to our excellent school district,” Rovtar added.

# # # #

May 16, 2017

Two-time NJ State Geography Bee champion named Top 10 Finalist in preliminary round at National Geographic Bee in Washington, D.C.

SchoolRobert R. Lazar Middle School 7th grader Veda Bhattaram will compete in National Championship Round on May 17

Montville Township, New Jersey - Veda Bhattaram, a seventh grade student at Robert R. Lazar Middle School in Montville Township, New Jersey, is a two-time champion in the National Geographic sponsored NJ State Geography Bee. He received his second state championship on March 31, 2017. That State championship earned him the opportunity to compete a second time at the National Geographic Bee competition in Washington D.C. The 2017 event is the 29th Annual National Geographic Bee competition.

On Monday, May 15, at the end of preliminaries, Bhattaram was named a Top 10 Finalist. On Wednesday, May 17 he will compete in the National Geographic Bee Championship Round. ( )

2017 is the second time Bhattaram has won the NJ State Geography Bee. Before Bhattaram’s March win, 2002 was the last time a student won the NJ Geography Bee championship two years in a row. For Bhattaram the NJ Geography Bee Championship came down to a tie-breaker round.

This unique win also provided Bhattaram with his second opportunity to compete in the National Geographic Bee competition.

“I was very calm this year, because I had won the NJ competition before,” Bhattaram said of his 2017 NJ State win. He noted that the experience of having competed twice before at the state level, and once before at the national level helped to prepare him for the 2017 NJ Geography Bee competition.

To prepare for the D.C. competition Bhattaram said he “studies during all of his free time.” He has also worked closely with Lazar Social Studies teachers Caitlin Cardinale and Christopher Carman to prepare.

“He has a tremendous passion for geography,” Carmen said. “It’s really neat.”

“The depth of his knowledge is amazing” Cardinale noted. “He keeps us on our toes.”

“Whenever I have time, I’m studying,” added Bhattaram.

Qualifying for the Championship Round is proof the 13-year old’s dedication has paid off.

Tomorrow, May 17, the Top 10 Finalists will compete for the National Championship. 2.6 million students, from 10,000 schools across the United States of America, compete for the opportunity to be one of the 54 who compete for the title of National Champion at the National Geographic Bee in Washington, D.C.

The National Geographic Bee is open to students in the fourth through eighth grades. It has been held annually since 1989. Since 1989 only two New Jersey students have landed geography’s top spot in the nation.

Champions of the National Geographic Bee receive a $50,000 college scholarship and lifetime membership in the National Geographic Society.

Bhattaram’s parents, Satyendra Bhattaram, Sirisha Suram, and his younger brother, Vihari Bhattaram, are with him in Washington D.C.

The four-day competition is being held this year from May 14-17 at National Geographic’s Washington, D.C., headquarters. It moderated by humorist and journalist Mo Rocca.

National Geographic will air the final round of the National Geographic Bee Championship at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Friday, May 19. It will also be aired later on public television stations; check local television listings for dates and times.

# # # #

May 12, 2017

Montville Township Public Schools to be featured another three times on Emmy® award-winning Classroom Close-up, NJ

SaundersWoodmont’s HIPP Award-winning program Brick by Brick – Lego Learning to air Sunday, May 14

Montville Township, New Jersey – This school year, the Emmy® award-winning television show Classroom Close-up NJ, has filmed in Montville Township Public Schools three times. On Sunday, May 14, the first of the three 2016-2017 segments will air on NJTV (In Montville Township, New Jersey, NJTV is Cablevision’s Channel 8).

Entitled Brick by Brick, this innovative educational initiative uses LEGOS to help students discover and retain concepts across all curriculum areas. Brick by Brick was developed by fourth grade teachers Margaret Beatty and Tina Janis at Woodmont Elementary School in the Pine Brook area of Montville Township, NJ. Brick by Brick-- Laying the Foundations for Learning received the New Jersey Education Association’s (NJEA) Frederick L. Hipp Foundation for Excellence in Education Award for the 2014-2015 academic year.

Just over a dozen HIPP Grants are awarded across NJ annually.  According to the NJEA website, the Hipp Grant is in place to help educators “Bring creative ideas to life,” and “Promote excellence in education.”

The Brick by Brick educational program also includes Brick Buddies, a kindergarten component where fourth grade students mentor kindergarteners in Woodmont teacher Jennifer Kelly’s class.

On Sunday, May 14, and again on Sunday, June 11, 2017, Brick by Brick will be among the featured educational programs on Classroom Close-up, NJ. The Brick by Brick segment will air on each of those Sundays at 7:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

Classroom Close-up, NJ is produced by NJEA and NJTV. It highlights innovative and extraordinary educational programs and educators across the state.

The second educational program filmed by Classroom Close-up during the 2016-2017 school year was developed by seventh grade science teacher Marisa Castronova-Wos of Robert R. Lazar Middle School. Castronova-Wos is also an NJEA Hipp Award recipient for 2016-2017. She partnered with third grade teacher Jess Shackil of Parsippany’s Intervale Elementary School to create STEM Pals, a cross-graded, cross-district project designed to connect students and teachers to a larger scientific community. STEM Pals will be featured on Classroom Close-up, NJ on Sunday, June 25 at 7:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. The segment will also air on Sunday, July 2 at 7:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

Both the Woodmont and the Lazar segments filmed in March of 2017.

On May 3, 2017, Valley View Elementary School was the site of the third 2016-2017 Montville Township Public Schools’ featured educational segment for Classroom Close-up, NJ. The segment, entitled ACES, highlights the 29th Anniversary of Project ACES (All Children Exercise Simultaneously).

Developed by Valley View Physical Education Teacher Len Saunders, ACES was launched to instill in students a passion for physical fitness. What began as a way to encourage an entire school to get up, get moving and get healthy, has grown into the world’s largest exercise class, where millions of students around the globe exercise simultaneously. Highlighted throughout its 29 year history by such media outlets as Sports Illustrated and CBS News, ACES will air on the NJTV NJEA Classroom Close-up, NJ program on Sunday, October 22 and again on Sunday, November 26, 2017. The show will be broadcast at 7:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on both dates.

Now taping its twenty-fourth season, Classroom Close-up, NJ has won fifteen Emmy® Awards. Each half-hour program shows how New Jersey’s creative and caring educational professionals inspire and motivate students. Each week’s episode highlights the excitement and learning that is inspired when teachers, education support professionals, students and parents work together for success. 

Brick by Brick, Stem Pals and ACES mark the ninth, tenth and eleventh time the NJTV NJEA television show Classroom Close-up, NJ has featured Montville Township Public Schools programs. Past shows can be viewed on-line at  and include:

  • Montville ESY – MTHS (2016)
  • Organic Farming – Lazar (2016)
  • Humanities Research Program - MTHS (2015)
  • Lazar News Network (LNN) – Lazar, (2015)
  • Every Drop Counts – Hilldale, (2007)
  • Show Case Café – MTHS, (2006) 
  • Governor’s Award Student – MTHS, (2005)
  • The Cookie Project – Hilldale, (2002) 

NJEA is the state’s largest association of education professionals, representing 200,000 public school teachers, administrators, higher education faculty, education support professionals, retired educators and students preparing to become teachers.

# # # #

May 09, 2017


Silent Epidemic: Child Sexual Abuse Focus of Montville Women's Club Seminar

WomangroupppppppppppMONTVILLE, NJ - The Montville Township’s Women’s Club sponsored a presentation on child sexual abuse at the Senior House on Tuesday, April 25 in recognition of April as National Child Abuse Prevention month. The talk was part of “The Enough Abuse Campaign.” To read more click the following words, "click here"