William T. Smith Superintendent of Schools
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Welcome to the Point Pleasant Beach School District. Author Thomas Wolfe famously wrote, “You can’t go home again,” but I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to “come home” to a district that played such an important role in my development as a new teacher. I proudly return to Point Pleasant Beach to lead a premier New Jersey school district that truly earns the moniker, “A Gem of the Jersey Shore.” The Beach has a long and storied history, which Garnet Gulls past and present hold dear, and it continues to be a unique and special school district, offering students all of the benefits that accompany a small, close-knit community while affording them unmatched opportunities to grow, excel, and develop their passions.
By way of introduction, I began my teaching career as an English teacher at Point Pleasant Beach High School in 1994. Some have heard me recall the narrow, wooden floorboards, finished with square-head nails that squeaked as the students and I moved throughout my classroom on the 5th floor—a space that I called home for nearly nine years. That classroom held history within its walls, and over eight years I discovered what residents of Point Pleasant Beach and our sending district communities know—there is no place like The Beach. As a teacher and coach, I could not have asked for a better group of educators and leaders to learn from and to work alongside. Since that time, I have sought challenges, following a path of continued personal growth and exploration—as both a student and teacher. I have had the pleasure of working in many capacities with students and teachers throughout the span of pre-K-16, and my philosophy on teaching and learning has evolved around a core set of principles: Our students succeed when schools prioritize access and opportunity and encourage creativity and exploration; Our schools succeed when our teachers seek, innovate and encourage.
As a district leader, I aspire to promote growth and success in every classroom. Schools and students are facing unprecedented challenges in the 21st century. The world is demanding from our students highly developed collaboration and content-literacy skills, and opportunities for students to bring new ideas to a “flat world” of hungry consumers of information are ever-present. I am confident that the dedicated professionals in Point Pleasant Beach School District have the passion, talent, and vision required to create life-long learners who are eager to participate productively in the world around them and who are best prepared for college and career pathways.
It is a great honor to be charged with authoring the next chapter in the history of Point Pleasant Beach School District, but appropriately the role is that of co-author. I invite students, faculty, staff, and you to join me in what promises to be an exciting narrative. Our school community is made richer by your participation and feedback. I look forward to working with you.Sincerely,William T. Smith
Point Pleasant Beach School District 299 Cooks Lane
Point Pleasant Beach, NJ 08742(732) 899-8840