It was Superintendent of Schools David Miceli's Oscar moment. But instead of a tuxedo, he was wearing an Under Armour polo. And instead of a full auditorium, he was in front of only a handful of people.
But still, Miceli went through his list of "thank-you's," noting how was a product of the community and everyone's tireless effort committed to education.
Thanking everyone from administrators to custodians at the Board of Education's meeting Thursday night, Miceli said the ranking reflects the school's commitment to new and updated curriculum, meant to give students a well-rounded education.
His acceptance speech was even complete, courtesy of exit music thanks to the marching band practicing outside the school.
"The overall sentiment is that everyone is very excited about being number one," he said. "The support we have is special and we should feel very good about our school system."
His statements were echoed by other members of the Board of Education, who encouraged students to continue with their path of excellence.
"This is a long time coming," said Board President John Wolak. New Providence High School was ranked fifth in 2010. "We need to continue to pursue achievement and to lead the district in a positive direction."
The board attributed new programs, like the mobile iPad and senior year internship programs, as ways the school were pumped up in the rankings.
These programs are slated to continue next year with a newly adopted curriculum guide in 15 classes throughout the district. The new curriculum includes interactive components with the iPad program and linked studies to make lessons flow from one year to another.
"This is how we got to number one," said Board member Nancy Opperthauser.
The board approved 152 new appointments for the upcoming academic year, including 141 substitute teacher slots. There is one other spot to fill due to an unexpected resignation, Miceli said, which should be filled before school begins.
Phase I of the bleacher installation process is complete, with phase II set in the works. An architect will be working with the board within the next week to go over designs for new ramps that will be installed. If designs are approved, construction will start at the end of the next academic year.
The board approved a policy on second reading that includes cheerleading in the prevention and treatment of sports-related concussions and head injuries bylaws. Statewide, cheerleaders are not considered in the precaution. New Providence changed the language to include cheerleaders as a sport.