The educational attainment of the average Hunterdon resident is considerably higher than the rest of the state, which, in turn, suggests that residents expect more of their local schools — and they are used to getting it. The average SAT scores from all five of the county’s high schools is well over 1000, and a significant portion of the graduating classes go on to college. Our elementary and middle schools, too, do very well, with several of them regularly winning state and national awards for educational excellence. The public school systems are large enough to offer a full range of educational and extracurricular activities, but small enough so students don’t get lost in the system. In 1999, the average class size ranged from 13-18 students for elementary and middle schools, and from 15-24 students at the high school level.
Baccalaureate and masters-level programs, as well as a wide range of associate degree and certificate programs can be pursued at Raritan Valley Community College through joint programs with the New Jersey Institute of Technology, Seton Hall, and Fairleigh Dickinson University. The college has a guaranteed admission program with Rutgers and Montclair Universities. Raritan Valley enrolls more than 10,000 student annually, many taking business and professional courses through the college’s Institute for Business and Professional Development.
Career and technical education is available at Hunterdon County Polytech, and an enormous range of short courses and evening classes are available through the YMCA, the County Parks system, the Hunterdon County Adult Education Program, and from other for-profit educational organizations, offering art, dance, scuba, and computer programming courses, for example.
Most of these educational operations are funded largely through local property taxes, but there is a broad base of support and the county’s schools rarely lack generous funding.