Hillside High School (New Jersey)

Hillside High School (New Jersey)

Hillside High School is a comprehensive community four-year public high school that serves students in ninth through twelfth grades from Hillside, in Union County, New Jersey, United States, operating as the lone secondary school of the Hillside Public Schools. The school has been accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Secondary Schools.

As of the 2018–19 school year, the school had an enrollment of 842 students and 77.2 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 10.9:1. There were 475 students (56.4% of enrollment) eligible for free lunch and 82 (9.7% of students) eligible for reduced-cost lunch.

Awards, recognition and rankings

The school was the 250th-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. The school had been ranked 166th in the state of 328 schools in 2012, after being ranked 217th in 2010 out of 322 schools listed. The magazine ranked the school 287th in 2008 out of 316 schools. The school was ranked 262nd in the magazine's September 2006 issue, which surveyed 316 schools across the state.


In 2001, students from David Brearley High School and Hillside High School collaborated to develop literary and art projects about bigotry presented at an exhibit, "Making Connections: Two Culturally Diverse Schools Address Prejudice and Hatred by Studying the Holocaust Together." The exhibit was presented at Kean University, and was viewed together with local Holocaust survivors and concentration camp liberators.


Hillside High School on Liberty Avenue was originally constructed in 1939–40 with the first graduating class in 1941, replacing the Coe Avenue (A.P. Morris) School which became a grammar school. Additions were later added to accommodate the baby-boomers of the 1950s and 1960s. In the mid-sixties the high school held some 1,500 students.


The Hillside High School Comets compete in the Union County Interscholastic Athletic Conference, which consists of public and private high schools in Union County and operates under the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA). With 658 students in grades 10-12, the school was classified by the NJSIAA for the 2015-16 school year as Central Jersey, Group II for most athletic competition purposes, which included schools with an enrollment of 498 to 750 students in that grade range. Before the 2010 realignment, the school had participated in the Mountain Valley Conference, which consisted of public and parochial high schools in Union County, Essex County and Somerset County.

In 1986, the Hillside Comets football team finished with an 11–1 record and a North II Group II state championship with a win against Madison High School. After knocking off the second and third seed in the first two rounds, the seventh-seeded Hillside team won its second North II Group II state sectional championship with a 20-13 win at High Point Solutions Stadium against top-seeded and previously undefeated Point Pleasant Borough High School in the final game of the 2017 tournament playoff.

The boys' basketball team won the Group II state championships in both 1990 and 1992, defeating Middle Township High School in the tournament final in both years.

In 2011, the Hillside High School cheerleading team, under coach Keyla Silva, won the title of State Champions at the NJCDCA competition in Trenton in the Intermediate Varsity division. After this victory the cheerleaders held this title for three years in a row, repeating as state division champion in 2012 and 2013.


The school's principal is Christine Sidwa. Her administration team includes two vice principals.

Notable alumni

  • Clint Bolick (born 1957, class of 1975), Associate Justice of the Arizona Supreme Court.
  • Hiram Chodosh (born 1962), Fifth president of Claremont McKenna College in Claremont, California.
  • David Jones (born 1968}, former NFL tight end who played for the Los Angeles Raiders in 1992.
  • Marc Leepson (born 1945, class of 1963), journalist, historian, author of Saving Monticello, Flag: An American Biography, Desperate Engagement and editor of the Webster's New World Dictionary of the Vietnam War.
  • Rollie Massimino (born 1934, class of 1952), coach at Hillside who went on to become a college basketball coach, best known for leading the Villanova Wildcats to an NCAA championship in 1985.
  • Jerron McMillian (born 1989), NFL safety for the Green Bay Packers.
  • Kendall Ogle (born 1975), linebacker who played in the NFL for two seasons with the Cleveland Browns.
  • Alan Paul (born 1949), Grammy Award-winning singer and composer, best known as one of the founding members of the current incarnation of the vocal group The Manhattan Transfer.
  • Arthur Seale (born 1946, class of 1964), responsible for the kidnapping and murder of Sidney Reso, the Vice President of International Operations for Exxon on April 29, 1992.
  • Marquis Spruill (born 1991), football linebacker.
  • Dan Studney (born 1941, class of 1959), former track and field athlete who competed in the javelin throw, winning a gold medal for the United States at the 1963 Pan American Games.
  • Hela Yungst (1950–2002), Miss New Jersey 1971, representing the state in the Miss America Pageant. She changed her name to Hela Young and became the New Jersey Lottery representative on television.


External links

  • Hillside High School
  • Hillside Public Schools
  • Hillside Public Schools's 2015–16 School Report Card from the New Jersey Department of Education
  • School Data for the Hillside Public Schools, National Center for Education Statistics

Hillside High School (New Jersey)

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