Tinian Junior Senior High School (TJSHS) is a part of the CNMI Public School System and is located on the island of Tinian. Tinian is located approximately three miles south of Saipan, the capital of the Northern Mariana Islands, and one of the four more developed and populated islands in the Marianas chain. Tinian Jr. Sr. High School opened in 1986 and graduated its first class in 1991. In SY1718, Tinian Jr. Sr. High School served 258 students from grades 7th to 12th. This school year, Tinian Jr. Sr. High School has a population of a little over 259 students. The student body is made up of different ethnicities, including Chamorros, the island's indigenous people, making up approximately 53% of the total student population. Other ethnicities include Filipinos at 38% and the remaining 9% of the student population includes students of Chinese, Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), Koreans, Nepalese, and Palauan descent.
Tinian Jr. Sr. High School offers classes to grades 7th-12th, covering the following core content: English Language Arts, Math, Social Studies and Science, Physical Education and Health. In addition to this, the school offers Chamorro Culture and Language Heritage Studies at the junior high level. In addition to core content, the following electives are offered year-round: Hospitality and Tourism Management I and II, Cooperative Education and Cooperative Training, Agriculture, Fine Arts, Computer Literacy, Leadership Corp., Junior Reserve Officer Training Corp. (JROTC), Japanese, Entrepreneurship, and High School Success. Students are also given the opportunity to take online courses through the district’s Distance Education program. Courses offered include ground core courses, as listed above, as well as: Pre-AP English, AP LAnguage and AP Literature, Pre-Calculus, and AP Statistics, Chamorro Language & Heritage, Carolinian Language & Heritage, Intro to Photography, Creative Writing, and Health. Special Education services are offered for students who qualify. Approximately 5% of our student population currently receive Special Education services. Approximately 14% of our student population are identified as English Language Learners. This school year, all students receive free meals.
Tinian Junior Senior High School consists of 34 faculty members. The instructional staff include 17 classroom teachers, four teacher aides, three instructors, one counselor, and one Special Education contact teacher. Currently, 11 teachers and one instructor are considered highly-qualified based on the CNMI PSS teacher certification requirements. The administrative support staff includes a principal and vice-principal, administrative assistant, a school aide, a registrar, a librarian aide, and a building maintenance worker. With the assistance of the community, the school was given two additional staff members assigned to TJSHS, appointed by the Tinian Mayor's Office: one is assigned to the main office and one is assigned to student services.
The CNMI Public School System receives federal funding under Title I Consolidated Grant. Because school allocations are based on student population, the amount TJSHS receives is inconsiderable compared to other schools in the district.
Tourism continues to be a major economic engine for the CNMI. However an economic downturn in the late 1990's has affected income and funding levels amongst the schools. For Fiscal Year 2018, TJSHS received approx. $37,000 from the local budget, amounting to around $150 per student. This coming fiscal year we are expecting a decrease in local funds for FY 2019, with allocations at $20-$30 per student. The amount of funding our school receives on a yearly basis has placed us in challenging situations. However, TJSHS continues to strive and search for alternatives and improvise with resources we do have. Our relationship with community partners continues to benefit our students and our school.
Despite the school’s lack of sufficient funding, the TJSHS students have demonstrated exceptional performances in academics and extracurricular programs. Last school year, the senior high Mock Trial team competed in the championships and earned second place at the Mock Trial Competition on Saipan. The JROTC Stallion Battalion, along with groups from two other schools in the district, earned first place overall at the West Coast Golden Bear National Drill Meet. Additionally, the JROTC Stallion Battalion earned a rating of Honor Unit with Distinction for their JROTC Program Accreditation. The Inetnun Natibu, the school’s Chamorro Language and Performing Arts group, also won first place overall at the Chamorro Language Competition sponsored by the University of Guam.
The vision of Tinian Junior Senior High School is for students to develop school pride, aspire to become 21st Century lifelong learners, cultivate values that reflect high self-worth, motivation, discipline, and demonstrate interpersonal skills and respect for all cultures. Our school creates an atmosphere of camaraderie among staff and students and demonstrate fairness to all stakeholders. We learn to familiarize ourselves with the variety of cultures in our small island community.
The mission of Tinian Junior Senior High School is to provide educational opportunities for all students to become responsible, contributing members of the global community. We have a variety of programs implemented in our schools that promote socio-cultural and 21st century skills among students.
Below are such programs:
- The Japan Club relationship with our international partners in Japan promotes peace awareness in an exchange of cultures.
- Our JROTC program is designed to teach our students the value of citizenship, leadership, service to the community, personal responsibility, and a sense of accomplishment, while instilling in them self-esteem, teamwork, and self-discipline.
- he Close-Up program allows students to learn, experience, and be a part of the governmental processes, at both the local and the national levels; these programs allow students to travel to the places where bills are made into laws, and have conversations and share ideas their own political leaders.
- The AmeriCorps Program allows our students to engage in extensive community service activities that aim to better not just the school, but the community at large. AmeriCorps members tutor, aid in the public library program, participate in various trash pick ups, and assist in managing the different community sports.
- he members of National Honor Society and National Junior Honor Society are the students who display the highest caliber of excellence with regards to scholarship, leadership, service, and character. Both the NHS and NJHS chapters at TJSHS play an integral part in ensuring that the school's mission statement of creating helpful "members of the global community" is fulfilled through the various community service and outreach programs that the chapters take part in.
- Cooperative Education allows for students to apply skills they learned in the classroom to their practical work experience.
- Hospitality and Tourism Management Program participants earn a nationally-recognized certificate under the American Hotel and Lodging Educational Institute after completing the two-year program.
Notable Achievements and Areas of Improvement
Tinian Junior Senior High School has seen many different areas of achievement in the last three years.
(A) Faculty/Staff Retention
Since 2013, there has been an increase in the hiring and retention faculty and staff. Over 50% of the faculty and staff are former students of Tinian Jr/Sr High School. 64% of the classroom teachers are certified in their specific content areas and all of the teacher aides are currently working on obtaining higher degrees. Additionally, many of the administrative staff are a part of the local labor force. Five years ago, teacher retention was a major issue and currently, retention rates are excellent, and have been for the past three years.
(B) Increase in Teacher Certification/Professional Development
In the last three years, teachers at TJSHS have attended major professional developments and certification classes that have been geared towards the improvement of instruction for 21st century learners. 20 members of our faculty and staff have completed the Instructional Technology certification courses. Teacher, counselor and administrator certification courses are offered online through the district’s Distance Education Program. Since its implementation, more of our teachers are able to fulfill certification requirements.
To assist novice teachers toward meeting professional goals, there are 8 “instructional coaches” who are assigned as mentors to provide support for instructional staff in the areas of lesson planning, classroom management, assessments, and other professional goals as identified by each teacher.
(C) Increasing Student Participation in Off-Island Programs/Competitions
Student participation in academic, athletic, cultural, and civic programs and competitions have been excellent in the past 3 years.
TJSHS students have placed first in the CNMI in competitions such as the West Coast Golden Bear National Drill Meet and the University of Guam Chamorro Language Competition. Athletic teams include basketball, volleyball, cross-country, and track and field. During the district wide Up Close Program, TJSHS students consistently show excellent knowledge and skills with regard to civic participation and responsibilities. The increase in participation has garnered many successes for the school from our students.
Our three schoolwide improvement plan goals for the school year, which are directly aligned with our district’s strategic priorities address academic achievement and success for our students; improving instructional delivery for our teachers; and appropriately expending of allocated funds.
(D) Access to the Internet and Technology
Internet access is now available throughout the campus: in all classrooms, in the library, the cafeteria and the main office. The library is equipped with a Technology on Wheels (TOW) cart. In addition to this, the school has designated TOW labs, with each lab housing one laptop cart and one iPad cart. Two iPad carts are available for teachers to share on the second floor. Each cart houses 30 devices. This allows students to have the world’s wealth of information at their fingertips.
Prior to the opening of SY1718, all restroom facilities were renovated and are currently in use. Based on the School Monitoring reports from SY1617, there were 81 recommendations that needed to be addressed. By the end of SY1718, the administration was able to address at least 64 of the recommendations which include the repair and preventative maintenance of all air-conditioning units, interior painting of all classrooms, roof coating, and the replacement and installation of illuminated exit signs. The remaining recommendations require a larger scope of work and funding which have been included in the school’s FY19 Budget Request.
(F) Instructional Materials
In SY1617, the district procured instructional materials for all schools, grades K-8. SY1718 marks the first school year that all students in grades K-12 had access to the same instructional materials. The subscription procured by the district includes consumables and online access for all students and teachers for the next six years.
At the school-level, school-wide funds are allocated to each classroom teacher to procure instructional materials specific to student learning needs.
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Tinian Junior Senior High School teaches tomorrow’s leaders today. Teachers receive training in instructional strategies and current techniques during our designated school-level professional development days. Teachers then use these strategies to further improve student achievement in and out of the classroom. Teachers also participate in district professional learning communities.
Various clubs on campus exist that give students access to exciting and engaging activities that will help students grow and develop as 21st century learners and responsible members of the global community.