Hightstown High School

Hightstown High School is a four-year comprehensive public high school that serves students in ninth through twelfth grades comprised of three communities in Mercer County and Monmouth County, in the U.S. state of New Jersey, operating as part of the East Windsor Regional School District. Students come from East Windsor and Hightstown, both in Mercer County. Students from Roosevelt (a community in Monmouth County) attend the district's high school as part of a sending/receiving relationship with the Roosevelt Public School District.[4]

Hightstown High School
Hightdtown Rams.jpeg
Hightstown High School front.jpg
Main entrance of the school
25 Leshin Lane

, ,

United States
Coordinates40°15′40″N 74°31′52″W / 40.261°N 74.531°W / 40.261; -74.531
TypePublic high school
School districtEast Windsor Regional School District
NCES School ID340432003054[2]
PrincipalDennis M. Vinson Jr.[1]
Faculty131.3 FTEs[2]
Enrollment1,621 (as of 2021–22)[2]
Student to teacher ratio12.3:1[2]
Color(s)  Blue and
Athletics conferenceColonial Valley Conference (general)
West Jersey Football League (football)
Team nameRams[3]
PublicationThe Ram Page

The school is approved by the New Jersey Department of Education and is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.[5]

As of the 2021–22 school year, the school had an enrollment of 1,621 students and 131.3 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 12.3:1. There were 347 students (21.4% of enrollment) eligible for free lunch and 127 (7.8% of students) eligible for reduced-cost lunch.[2]


The inaugural Hightstown High School opened for the 1913-14 school year, before which students in grades 11 and 12 attended Trenton Central High School. With rapid growth in the area, the second high school building opened in January 1925. The third and current school building opened during the 1965–66 school year.[6]

Additions to the original structure were completed in 1973, 1982 and 2005.[5]

Awards, recognition and rankingsEdit

The school was the 126th-ranked public high school in New Jersey out of 339 schools statewide in New Jersey Monthly magazine's September 2014 cover story on the state's "Top Public High Schools", using a new ranking methodology.[7] The school had been ranked 161st in the state of 328 schools in 2012, after being ranked 180th in 2010 out of 322 schools listed.[8] The magazine ranked the school 175th in 2008 out of 316 schools.[9] The school was ranked 119th in the magazine's September 2006 issue, which surveyed 316 schools across the state.[10] Schooldigger.com ranked the school 225th out of 376 public high schools statewide in its 2010 rankings (an increase of 4 positions from the 2009 rank) which were based on the combined percentage of students classified as proficient or above proficient on the language arts literacy and mathematics components of the High School Proficiency Assessment (HSPA).[11]


The Hightstown High School Rams[3] compete in the Colonial Valley Conference, which is comprised of public and private high schools in Mercer, Middlesex and Monmouth counties, operating under the supervision of the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA).[12] With 1,218 students in grades 10-12, the school was classified by the NJSIAA for the 2019–20 school year as Group IV for most athletic competition purposes, which included schools with an enrollment of 1,060 to 5,049 students in that grade range.[13] The football team competes in the Valley Division of the 94-team West Jersey Football League superconference[14][15] and was classified by the NJSIAA as Group IV South for football for 2022–2024, which included schools with 893 to 1,296 students.[16]

Interscholastic sports include cross country, football, soccer, field hockey, cheerleading, wrestling, indoor track and field, basketball, swimming, ice hockey, baseball, softball, tennis, golf, and lacrosse.[3]

The school participates with Ewing High School in a joint ice hockey team in which Lawrence High School is the host school / lead agency. The co-op program operates under agreements scheduled to expire at the end of the 2023–24 school year.[17]

The boys' soccer team was awarded the Group I state championship in 1946 (declared as co-champion with Chatham High School), 1947, 1949, 1950, 1951 (won vs. Harrison High School), 1956, 1957 and 1964 (won vs. Harrison), was awarded the Group II title in 1958 and 1959, and won the Group II title in 1961 (vs. Irvington Tech), 1962 (vs. West Morris Central High School) and 1963 (vs. Harrison). The streak of four consecutive titles won from 1961 to 1964 is tied for the third-longest streak in the state.[18] The 1962 team won the Group II title with a 3-1 win against West Morris.[19]

The boys track team won the indoor relay championship in Group I/II in 1971 (as co-champion).[20]

The girls' field hockey team won the Central Jersey Group IV state sectional championship in 1983.[21]

The girls' basketball team won the Group IV state championship in 1987, defeating Bloomfield High School by a score of 59-39 in the tournament final at the Louis Brown Athletic Center.[22][23]

The ice hockey team won the Mercer County Championship in 1987, 1989, 1994, 1999 (as co-champion with Hopewell Valley Central High School) and 2002.[24]

The softball team finished the season with a 25-4 record in 2019, after winning the Group IV state title with a 9-4 score against runner-up Mount Olive High School in the tournament finals at Kean University.[25][26]

Extracurricular activitiesEdit

FIRST Robotics TeamEdit

Hightstown High School is also home to FIRST Robotics Competition Team #1089, Team Mercury. What makes Team Mercury particularly notable is its transition (since 2016) into a more student-centric method to approaching the competition, in which students independently engineer the robot and self-manage, instead of a more mentor-centric approach, in which adult mentors guide students at every step of the process of building the robot. Since the team's inception in 2003, Team Mercury has received a number of awards, including the prestigious Chairman's Award in 2009. The team also participated in the FIRST Robotics FRC World robotics competition in the 2014, 2015 seasons.[citation needed] Team Mercury is sponsored by Oracle, Holman Enterprises, Trumpf, Bloomberg, Lockheed Martin, Briston-Myers Squibb, Abbott Laboratories and the East Windsor Regional School District. In terms of team structure, the team is divided up into different committees, which are known as Programming & Electronics, Public Relations & Marketing, Award Submissions, Robot Design, Spirit & Imagery, Media Design & Production, Scouting & Strategy, and Web Design. Each committee has one or two Committee Head team members, depending on the sheer size of the committee and its workload, which serve as managers selected by the Head Coach, Mr. Gregory, for their specialty. Within each committee, there are also sub-committees, such as the Scouting App team for Scouting & Strategy, and project managers, which report to the Committee Head oversee more specific tasks with smaller groups from their committee. There is also a smaller 10-member team named FTC 3944 under the same Head Coach, which competes in the FIRST Tech Challenge, builds a smaller robot for a different field, and tracks their progress using an Engineering Notebook. As a community service opportunity, FRC members can volunteer to mentor any of several FIRST LEGO League teams, which consist of students in grades 4-8 that want to participate in the designing, building & programming of Lego EV3 robots for competition.[27]

Hightstown Marching RamsEdit

The Marching band competed in the USBands national championships and state championships in Group 3A in 2015 with their field show "España". The band placed 2nd out of 23 in the state championships with a score of 93.663 and placed 3rd out of 27 in the national championships with a score of 96.275 beating Hightstown's record and won the Cadets award for Excellence in Creativity and Overall Effect.[28]

In 2016, the Marching Rams competed in the USBands state championships and national championships, with their field show "Pure Imagination". The band won the state championship title, placed 1st out of 22 bands with a score of 93.500 and won the caption for Best Overall Effect.[29] In the 2016 Group III A national championships the band placed 4th out of 26 with a score of 94.738.[30]


The school's principal is Dennis M. Vinson. His core administration team includes four assistant principals and the athletic director.[1]

Notable alumniEdit


  1. ^ a b Staff Contact Information, Hightstown High School. Accessed April 4, 2022.
  2. ^ a b c d e School data for Hightstown High School, National Center for Education Statistics. Accessed December 1, 2022.
  3. ^ a b c d Hightstown High School, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed October 20, 2020.
  4. ^ East Windsor Regional School District 2016 Report Card Narrative, New Jersey Department of Education. Accessed October 3, 2017. "The East Windsor Regional School District, located in central New Jersey at New Jersey Turnpike Exit 8, is a stable K-12 public school district serving the communities of the East Windsor Township and the Borough of Hightstown as well as Roosevelt Borough students' grades 7 through 12."
  5. ^ a b About Us, Hightstown High School. Accessed December 3, 2019. "Hightstown High School is a comprehensive four-year high school serving the Borough of Hightstown, East Windsor Township and the town of Roosevelt with a student body of approximately 1300 students. The Hightstown High School building was first occupied during the 1965-1966 school year with additions being completed in 1973, 1982 and 2005. The High School is approved by the State of New Jersey and is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools."
  6. ^ Pratt, Richard Harlan. Hightstown and East Windsor, pp. 29-31. Arcadia Publishing, 2014. ISBN 9781467120982. Accessed April 4, 2022. "The first Hightstown High School opened on the south side of Stockton Street on September 8, 1913. Up until this time, students in Hightstown had gone to school through the 10th grade and then completed their studies in Trenton.... The second Hightstown High School opened on January 12, 1925. Only 11 years after the establishment of the first Hightstown High School it became necessary to build a new school because of the growth of the community and the state mandate of compulsory education.... Hightstown High School served as a high school from January 1925 to February 1966, when the current high school located off Leshin Lane was opened."
  7. ^ Staff. "Top Schools Alphabetical List 2014", New Jersey Monthly, September 2, 2014. Accessed September 5, 2014.
  8. ^ Staff. "The Top New Jersey High Schools: Alphabetical", New Jersey Monthly, August 16, 2012. Accessed October 6, 2012.
  9. ^ Staff. "2010 Top High Schools", New Jersey Monthly, August 16, 2010. Accessed February 2, 2011.
  10. ^ "Top New Jersey High Schools 2008: By Rank", New Jersey Monthly, September 2008, posted August 7, 2008. Accessed August 19, 2008.
  11. ^ New Jersey High School Rankings: 11th Grade HSPA Language Arts Literacy & HSPA Math 2009-2010[permanent dead link], Schooldigger.com. Accessed January 1, 2012.
  12. ^ League & Conference Officers/Affiliated Schools 2020-2021, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed October 20, 2020.
  13. ^ NJSIAA General Public School Classifications 2019–2020, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 20, 2020.
  14. ^ Hightstown Rams, West Jersey Football League. Accessed May 1, 2023.
  15. ^ Home Page, West Jersey Football League. Accessed May 1, 2023. "The WJFL is a 94-school super conference that stretches from Princeton to Wildwood encompassing schools from the Colonial Valley Conference, the Burlington County Scholastic League, the Olympic Conference, the Tri-County Conference, the Colonial Conference, and the Cape Atlantic League. The WJFL is made up of sixteen divisions with divisional alignments based on school size, geography and a strength-of-program component."
  16. ^ NJSIAA Football Public School Classifications 2022–2024New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed May 1, 2023.
  17. ^ NJSIAA Winter Cooperative Sports Programs, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed December 1, 2020.
  18. ^ NJSIAA History of Boys Soccer, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed January 1, 2022.
  19. ^ "West Morris Bows 3-1", Courier News, November 19, 1962. Accessed January 1, 2021. "Hightstown High School defeated West Morris, 3-1, Saturday in the finals of the Group 2 soccer tournament at Buccleuch Park, New Brunswick."
  20. ^ History of the NJSIAA Indoor Relay Championships, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed October 20, 2020.
  21. ^ History of NJSIAA Field Hockey Championships, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed May 1, 2023.
  22. ^ NJSIAA Group Basketball Past Champions, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 20, 2020.
  23. ^ Schwartz, Paul. "Bloomfield exceeds expectations, but falls in final", The Record, March 15, 1987. Accessed December 6, 2020. "When coach Jim White's Bloomfield girls basketball team had a 1-3 record in December, his goals were comparatively modest.... 'Here' was Louis Brown Athletic Center, site of the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association Group 4 championship game. But the final dream of the Cinderella Bengals will have to wait until next year. Vicky Picott, perhaps the finest inside player in the state, scored 25 points and grabbed 14 rebounds last night to lead Hightstown to a 59-39 victory and the Group 4 title."
  24. ^ NJSIAA Ice Hockey State Championship History, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 20, 2020.
  25. ^ NJSIAA Softball Championship History, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed May 1, 2023.
  26. ^ Fortenbaugh, Rick. "Hightstown softball makes history with first state title in program history", The Trentonian, June 1, 2019. Accessed December 6, 2020. "When Hightstown beat Mount Olive by the score of 9-4 in the Group IV championship game at Kean University on Saturday, it did more than win the school's first state title in any sport since 1987. Continuing what's become a real fixture on the New Jersey softball scene, what Hightstown (25-4) also did is make it four straight years Mercer County has produced at least one softball state championship team."
  27. ^ "Team Mercury 1089". Mercury 1089. Team Mercury 1089. Retrieved November 4, 2020.
  28. ^ Batista, Amy. "Hightstown: HHS marching band experiences the sweet sounds of success", CentralJersey.com, November 12, 2015. Accessed December 20, 2016. "The Hightstown High School Marching Rams took second place at the USBands New Jersey state championships last month and placed third at the Nationals this past weekend."
  29. ^ Morsch, Mike. "Hightstown: HHS band marches to state title", CentralJersey.com, November 3, 2016. Accessed December 20, 2016.
  30. ^ USBands A Class National Championships (Group III A) Saturday, November 05, 2016 Allentown, PA, USBands. Accessed December 20, 2016.
  31. ^ HHS grad coaches team to Southeastern Conference title Archived September 30, 2007, at the Wayback Machine, Princeton Packet, March 16, 2007.
  32. ^ Staff. "Six-Member Freshmen Class to Join Princeton Men's Soccer in 2006: Group includes players from Colorado, California.", CBS Sports, June 5, 2006. Accessed February 2, 2011. "Head coach Jim Barlow, in his 11th season in 2006, welcomes a group that includes players from six states, including California and Colorado. One will become the third member of his family to play for Barlow at Princeton, while another is a graduate of Hightstown High School, Barlow's alma mater."
  33. ^ Forstchen, William R. Pillar to the Sky, p. 5. Macmillan Publishers, 2014. ISBN 9780765334381. Accessed January 29, 2022. "And thus this dedication to Betty Keller, librarian at Hightstown High School, and Russ Beaulieu, history teacher who shaped my life at such a crucial and sensitive time."
  34. ^ Men's Soccer Coaching Staff: Marlon LeBlanc - Head Coach, West Virginia Mountaineers. Accessed July 9, 2008. "A Hightstown High School four-year starter, the New Jersey native received All-State, All-Area, and All-County honors during his scholastic career."
  35. ^ Oldfield, Greg. "Marlon LeBlanc embracing role in developing next-level talent with Philadelphia Union II", Brotherly Game, February 28, 2021. Accessed January 29, 2022. "LeBlanc’s coaching journey started before his involvement in Penn State’s program. Growing up in East Windsor, New Jersey, he was an All-State player out of Hightstown High School and a member of the New Jersey ODP program before playing for the Nittany Lions."
  36. ^ "Local Happenings", The Hightstown Gazette, June 23, 1983. Accessed March 21, 2021. "Douglas V. Mastriano of 15 Leshin Lane, Hightstown, won an award for academic excellence in German at Mercer County Community College's Honors Convocation.... A 1982 graduate of Hightstown High School, Mastriano plans to transfer to Rider College and enter the ROTC program."
  37. ^ Kratch, James. "Meet the little-known Rutgers guy who could be the next ESPN radio star", NJ Advance Media for NJ.com, August 31, 2020. Accessed January 26, 2022. "East Windsor native and Rutgers graduate Zubin Mehenti is the new co-host of ESPN Radio's national morning show.... Mehenti didn’t play sports at Hightstown High in Mercer County."
  38. ^ Dakota Mills, Saint Joseph's Hawks. Accessed January 29, 2020. "High School: Hightstown; Hometown: East Windsor, N.J."
  39. ^ Cheslow, Jerry. "If You're Thinking of Living In/Hightstown; A Borough With Respect for Its Roots", The New York Times, February 6, 1994. Accessed February 2, 2011.

External linksEdit