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St. Joseph High School (Metuchen, New Jersey)

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Title: St. Joseph High School (Metuchen, New Jersey)  
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St. Joseph High School (Metuchen, New Jersey)

St. Joseph's High School
145 Plainfield Road
Metuchen, NJ, (Middlesex County), 08840
Type Private, All-Boys
Motto Where excellence is a habit, not a goal.
Religious affiliation(s) Roman Catholic
Patron saint(s) St. Joseph
Established 1961
Status Open
President Lawrence Walsh '68
Principal Justin Fleetwood[1]
Faculty 49.4 (on FTE basis)[2]
Grades 912
Enrollment 798[2] (2009-10)
Student to teacher ratio 16.2:1[2]
Campus size 70 acres (280,000 m2)
Campus type Suburban
Color(s)      Kelly green and
Athletics 14 sports
Athletics conference Greater Middlesex Conference
Team name Falcons
Rival Monsignor McClancy (NY)
Accreditation Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools[3]
Average SAT scores 600 critical reading
660 math
630 writing
Publication The Vignette (literary magazine)
Newspaper The Falcon
Yearbook Evergreen
Tuition $13,100 (2015-16)[4]
Affiliation Brothers of the Sacred Heart
Athletic Director Jerry Smith

St. Joseph High School, also known as St. Joe's, is an independent, all-boys Roman Catholic college preparatory school located on a 70-acre (280,000 m2) site in Metuchen and Edison, New Jersey.[5] It draws students from a wide geographic area encompassing over forty school districts and over seventy grammar schools in Middlesex, Somerset, and Union counties, as well as other outlying areas. It is located in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Metuchen. The school is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Secondary Schools since 1968.[3]

St. Joseph is operated by the Brothers of the Sacred Heart, who have been active in American education since their arrival from Lyon, France in 1847. From 1901 to 1961, St. Joseph’s served as a center for training and educating Brothers prior to their apostolate. The main school building was dedicated in the spring of 1963.[5]

There are both lay and religious teachers. As of the 2009-10 school year, the school had an enrollment of 798 students and 49.4 faculty members (on an FTE basis), resulting in a student–teacher ratio of 16.2.[2]


  • History 1
    • The Brothers of the Sacred Heart move to Metuchen 1.1
    • Education of novices 1.2
    • The community expands 1.3
    • Founding of the high school 1.4
  • Student Life 2
    • Athletics 2.1
  • Publications 3
    • The Falcon 3.1
    • The Vignette 3.2
  • Extracurricular achievements 4
  • Notable alumni 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7


The Brothers of the Sacred Heart move to Metuchen

Brothers Stanislaus Florent and Philip Lindner moved into a three-story roadhouse in 1902 with the intention of setting up a training center for novices. Their funds were limited and finding willing recruits for the novitiate proved to be difficult as few people had heard of the Brothers of the Sacred Heart. However, by the start of the first session in November 1902 there were ten postulants.

The arrival of the additional personnel fueled support for the construction of a new building that could serve as both a dormitory and classroom. However, in June 1903, a fire destroyed St Stanislaus College and with it the hopes for the new building.

The Brothers could afford to make only patchwork repairs and they had to assume the roles of blacksmiths and carpenters in order to repair damaged farm equipment and property. They also had to instigate cost-cutting measures, one of which involved the heating of the various buildings. Coal was used only to heat the main building, while stoves in the other buildings were fueled by railroad ties. The novices had to transport and handsaw the ties during their leisure time.

The greatest asset to the novitiate was the farm. The community could afford only things such as meat, bread, coffee and sugar. The rest had to be grown. The novices and postulants worked on the farm both in their free time and on scheduled work rotations. A common recreational activity of the residents was fishing on nearby Woodburn Pond.

Education of novices

The arrival of sixteen novices from France caused overcrowding. Due to the community's budget constraints, they were forced to improve on their facilities in piecemeal fashion.

The first true expansion of the novitiate occurred in 1907 when the main house was renovated. It was determined that a new chapel was needed in order to handle the number of inhabitants. A new building would have been too expensive and so it was decided to add a new wing. Three years later, the main house underwent another refurbishment. The top floor was refitted as a dormitory, while dining and recreation rooms were added to the lower level. Outside, the carriage house that held the novices was moved and a small cottage was placed adjacent to the main building.

Not all the changes were strictly practical. The community was concerned about the appearance of the grounds and after the addition of the new wing in 1907, a marble statue of Saint Joseph, weighing 1,400 lb (640 kg), was installed in front of the building.

The community expands

During the early 1920s, various fund-raising events provided the necessary capital to begin construction of a proper chapel. This was formally opened in 1922. At the dedication ceremony, the Bishop of Trenton, Thomas J. Walsh, asked the Brothers to take control of the Cathedral High School in Trenton.

In 1924 construction of what is now known as O’Neil Hall was completed. The building, designed by the same architect who had created the chapel, provided recreation rooms, kitchens and dining rooms, science labs, several classrooms and a large dormitory.

In 1951, a proposal was made to move the novitiate to Blairstown but failed due to lack of funding. Ten years later, the novitiate moved to Belvidere. This resolved the problem of overcrowding and enabled the separation of the novitiate from the postulant programs, as had been originally envisaged by the Province.

Founding of the high school

With the newfound space, the Brothers decided to establish a high school and in the fall of 1961 admitted 150 ninth grade students. A high school grew out of the old postulant program, which had existed for some time. The building was constructed on the land occupied by Brother Fabian’s vineyard that had been planted about sixty years before. The building was completed in 1963 at a cost of US$1 million.

The school soon developed high academic standards. The class of 1965 had two national merit scholarship semi-finalists, the first of many students in this category.

Student Life


The St. Joseph High School Falcons compete in the Red Division of the Greater Middlesex Conference (GMC), comprising 32 public and private high schools located in the greater Middlesex County area, operating under the supervision of the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association.[6] The school fields teams from freshmen through varsity levels in various sports including football, cross country, soccer, basketball, bowling, ice hockey, swimming, winter track, baseball, golf, lacrosse, spring track, crew, tennis and volleyball. Football was the most recent addition to sports at St. Joseph's, with varsity play beginning in the 2010 season, with the team playing independently in 2011 and beginning play in the GMC White Division in 2012.[7]

In 1963, St Joseph’s established their first varsity teams, these being in track, basketball and baseball. A varsity soccer team was set up in the following year. St. Joseph's soccer team has won seven NJSIAA state championships, winning the Non-Public A state title in 1964, 1971, 1972, 1976, 1978, 1988 and 1994.[8]

The swimming team was formed in 1968 by Brother Aldric Smith, Ph.D., and has since gone on to do well in state competition. St. Joseph has won twenty-two(22) state swimming championships in 1980–91, 1993–97, 1999, 2002–04 and 2006, as well as winning 37 consecutive Greater Middlesex Conference championships in total.[9] The school has also won state titles in basketball, cross country, curling, winter and spring track, soccer, tennis, lacrosse and volleyball.

The varsity volleyball program has brought home three state championships in 2002, 2006, and 2008.[10] The team has also won four sectional state championships in 2006, 2008, 2010, and 2011.

The varsity basketball team captured their first Tournament of Champions title in 2014, beating Newark East Side 49-47 in the Championship Game. They've won Non-Public South A six times (92,98,99,2012,13,14) and the overall Non-Public A title three times (2012,13,14).

Although no longer offered, the school once had a competitive gymnastics program, winning state championships in 1992 and 1993. Other sports no longer played are water polo and wrestling.

The St. Joseph athletes are supported by their student fan section, commonly known as the "Falcon Flock."[11]

In March 2015 the school began construction on a new football stadium and track and field facility that is expected to be completed later in the year.


The Falcon

The student body publishes a newspaper, The Falcon. The Falcon is entirely student run. Published monthly, the newspaper seeks to inform the student body of important events transpiring in the St. Joe’s community.[12] The Falcon has often been recognized by the American Scholastic Press Association for first place among high school newspapers in its national contest, including four consecutive awards from 2005-2008.[13] Long considered to be a branch of the administration's marketing and recruiting plans, The Falcon took a significant step in Fall 2009 toward student-interest stories and articles that were occasionally critical of administrative policies.[14] Frequent segments include "Brother Mike's Movie Review," student columns, and a sports section.[15]

The Vignette

The school publishes a yearly literary magazine. In 1963, The Falcon, had a literary contest and published their winners in a special edition. This contest continued to be held under the auspices of the newspaper until it grew into the current school literary magazine, The Vignette, which has since won various awards and received national recognition. Another product of the arts program was the Drama Club, established in 1963 with its first production, Stalag 17.

Extracurricular achievements

On February 29, 2012 the 2011-2012 College Bowl team traveled to Manhattan to compete in MSG Varsity's annual show The Challenge.[16][17] The Challenge, hosted by Jared Cotter, showcases the best and brightest high school students from 192 tri-state area high schools[18] testing competing teams on their knowledge of history, arts and literature, current events, math, and science in front of a live studio audience.[19] St. Joes won its first two matches against DePaul Catholic and Howell Township to advance to the state quarterfinals on March 15, 2012. On the final day of competition, St. Joseph High School defeated three teams, (Chatham High School, Torah Academy of Bergen County, and Mountain Lakes), all in close matches, to win its 2nd straight New Jersey Challenge State Championship.[20] As New Jersey champions, St. Joseph received $2,500.[21] Although they were able to advance to the tri-state championship, St. Joseph High School did not emerge victorious.[22]

The Saint Joseph History Bowl team competed at the National History Bowl championships in Alexandria, VA in 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014, finishing in 3rd, 5th, 5th, and 9th places respectively. Individually competing in the National History Bee in 2012, Senior Alex Frey of Dunellen, NJ won the national championship, going on to win the international championship as well, and Sophomore Jack Mehr finished in the top ten of the Junior Varsity competition. The following year, Mehr and another player were semifinalists in the Varsity and Junior Varsity divisions respectively.

In 1999 and 2000, the school's chess team was the New Jersey high school team champion, winning the Father Casimir J. Finley Trophy.[23] [24]

Notable alumni


  1. ^ Mr. Justin Fleetwood, Saint Joseph High School. Accessed September 30, 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d Data for St. Joseph High School, National Center for Education Statistics. Accessed June 12, 2011.
  3. ^ a b Saint Joseph High School, Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Secondary Schools. Accessed November 10, 2011.
  4. ^ Tuition/Fees Information, Saint Joseph High School. Accessed September 30, 2015.
  5. ^ a b School Overview, Saint Joseph High School. Accessed April 15, 2011.
  6. ^ League Memberships – 2012-2013, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed September 27, 2012.
  7. ^ Haley, John. "MIDDLESEX COUNTY: St. Joseph-Metuchen coach Bob Molarz sits down for a Q and A", The Star-Ledger, September 8, 2011. Accessed October 12, 2012. "Had a chance to sit down with St. Joseph of Metuchen head coach Bob Molarz, an old friend who decided to start a football program from scratch three years ago.... After playing an independent schedule in 2011, St. Joe’s entered the GMC White Division in 2012. They won the GMC White Division in 2013 with an undefeated season going 9-0 with new head Coach Casey Ransone."
  8. ^ History of NJSIAA Boys Soccer, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 10, 2011.
  9. ^ Bevensee, Rich. "Middlesex County boys swimming season in review, 2010-11", The Star-Ledger, April 3, 2011. Accessed November 10, 2011. "At the GMC, Burzinski won two events, Louie won once and 16 swimmers — Aker, Joe Baron, Burzynski, Dezenzo, Louie, Kurt MacDonald, McDermott, McNamara, Andrew Nesbitt, Riker Pasterkiewicz, Matt Rein, David Scala, Danny Sullivan, Kyle Terracciano, Tonery and Alex Torrisi — scored individual points to help St. Joseph steam toward its 33rd straight title. In the Non-Public A tournament, St. Joseph overpowered Bergen Catholic (118-52) and Seton Hall Prep (120-50) to find itself in the state championship meet for the first time since 2007."
  10. ^ Hageny, John Christian. "NJ Boys Volleyball: Fair Lawn rolls through Super Six Showcase EXPANDED COVERAGE",The Star-Ledger, May 15, 2011. Accessed November 10, 2011. "Southern Regional swept the round-robin Super Six tournament in 2009 and '10 en route to back-to-back NJSIAA titles. In 2008, host St. Joseph swept the tournament on the way to the state crown."
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^ Gubernat, Martine. "College Bowl: State Champs Who Also Meet "The Challenge”", "St. Joseph’s Professer. April 2012. Accessed November 20, 2012. "As if all this success was not enough, on February 29, the College Bowl Team traveled to Manhattan to compete in the annual NJ Challenge hosted by the MSG Varsity cable TV station."
  17. ^ MSG Varsity. "The Challenge: St Joseph wins NJ championship", "MSG Varsity", June 9, 2012. Accessed November 20, 2012. "The St. Joseph team is represented by Michael Ploch, Jason Hill, Alex Frey (captain), Nicholas Palmieri and Frank Fritz (alternate). The academic advisor is Edward Powers."
  18. ^ MSG Varsity. "The Challenge: St Joseph wins NJ championship", "MSG Varsity", June 9, 2012. Accessed November 20, 2012. ""The Challenge" includes 192 high schools from the entire tri-state area"
  19. ^ MSG Varsity. “The Challenge", "MSG Varsity", November 19, 2012. Accessed November 20, 2012. " The Challenge is an award-winning, academic televised quiz show for high schools featuring the best and brightest local students from across the tri-state area. Jared Cotter, former FUSE TV host and a popular semi-finalist from American Idol, serves as moderator, asking competing high school teams questions based on their knowledge of history, arts and literature, current events, math and science."
  20. ^ Gubernat, Martine. "College Bowl: State Champs Who Also Meet "The Challenge”", "St. Joseph’s Professer. April 2012. Accessed November 20, 2012. "The team won its two matches against DePaul Catholic and Howell Township to advance to the state quarterfinals on March 15. On that final day of competition, the Falcon squad defeated three talented teams (Chatham High School, Torah Academy of Bergan, and Mountain Lakes), all in close matches, to win its 2nd straight New Jersey Challenge State Championship!"
  21. ^ MSG Varsity. "The Challenge: St Joseph wins NJ championship", "MSG Varsity", June 9, 2012. Accessed November 20, 2012. "As New Jersey champions, St. Joseph receives $2,500."
  22. ^ MSG Varsity. "The Challenge: Ardsley wins Tri-State championship", "MSG Varsity", June 18, 2012. Accessed November 20, 2012. "Ardsley High School has completed their run through the Regional Competition and Tri-State Playoffs of MSG Varsity’s “The Challenge” to be crowned the 2011-12 Overall Tri-State Champions."
  23. ^ N. J. High School Team Champions 1956 – Present, New Jersey State Chess Federation. Accessed August 13, 2013.
  24. ^
  25. ^ Jon Bon Jovi remarks, American Music Awards, November 14, 2004. "In the fall of 1977, I was just another sophomore at St. Joseph's High School in New Jersey."
  26. ^ Spears, Mark J. "Bynum worth seeking out", The Denver Post, April 7, 2007. Accessed May 31, 2007. "Instead of going to Connecticut out of St. Joseph's High (N.J.) in 2005, the 7-footer joined the last group of high schoolers eligible to enter the draft."
  27. ^ Stephenson, Colin. "Caps take Colonia's Carlson at 27", The Star-Ledger, June 21, 2008. Accessed June 12, 2011. "Carlson, who played one season at St. Joseph's High School in Metuchen, also played youth hockey for the New Jersey Rockets."
  28. ^ Moritz, Owen; and Katz, Celeste. "TEN FACTS ABOUT GOV. JIM MCGREEVEY.", Daily News (New York), August 13, 2004. Accessed January 8, 2009.
  29. ^ Parker, Brandon. "Towns Jr. going global; N.J. native, 16, will play for the Dominican Republic during Olympic qualifying", ESPN, June 18, 2012. Accessed July 12, 2012. "But Towns is much more than a charismatic guy with a pair of size 20 shoes. For one, the rising sophomore helped his St. Joseph (Metuchen, N.J.) team to a state title this winter before taking the No. 1 spot in the recently released ESPN 25. Even more impressively, Towns' clout reached international status in May when he was named to the Dominican Republic National Team that will attempt to qualify for the London Olympics in July."
  30. ^ Jay Williams profile, NBA Draft. Accessed May 31, 2007.
  31. ^ "Garry Witts NBA stats". Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved September 25, 2014. 

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