Handbook » CAP Handbook

CAP Handbook



Cited by NJSBA as an

Exemplary Practice in Education


This handbook has been developed and devised to guide you through the Cranford Achievement Program (C.A.P.) Contributions from students past and present have been included as a testament to their thoughts and feelings for C.A.P. As you read and learn more about C.A.P., please do not hesitate to ask questions.





The Cranford Achievement Program was established in September 1982 by the Cranford Board of Education to provide a more appropriate setting for classified high school students who were experiencing difficulty adjusting to the traditional school environment. Students from Cranford as well as students from other districts, who were referred by their Child Study Teams, were considered for admittance.


During the past two decades that C.A.P. has been open, enrollment has increased from just a few students to almost sixty. The C.A.P. program has been expanded several times to meet the constant challenge of providing an appropriate educational setting for those students who can benefit from a non-traditional, individualized, structured approach to their education.



It is the intention of the C.A.P. staff to provide an academic curriculum which is comparable to the traditional Cranford High School academic setting. Smaller student to staff ratio ensure a supportive and consistent atmosphere. Frequent family contacts and parental involvement are encouraged and play an important role in the program.


A structured behavior management system helps to monitor student progress and systematically award privileges. Academics are stressed and flexibility is allowed to meet the needs of our students. Our curriculum targets individual learning styles and strengths. A firm, fair and consistent approach is used by the entire CAP Staff.




Required Majors


History (US I, US II, World) English

Science (Life, Earth, Physical) Physical Education/Health




Career Opportunities Group/Ind. Counseling

Senior Seminar Vocational Program (15 cr)

Spanish Reading

Art Music


Other Options


Work Study Vo-Tech Mainstream classes (H.S.)



A status level system is used to monitor and record student progress in our school. Students can earn privileges during the school day. The system is based on points, which are earned through academic efforts and appropriate behavior. A student’s status level is based on his/her point total. The more points a student earns the more privileges he/she will receive.


Weekly awards are available to students based on their grades and point total. A student who earns all “A” and “B” grades in one week earns the HONOR ROLL. A student who earns 90 or more points in one week earns the GOLD LIST. Students who earn this award will have their name posted on our award board and receive a certificate of merit. When a student earns ten certificates, he/she will be treated to lunch at a local restaurant accompanied by a staff member.


Students can earn an ATTENDANCE award by attending school on time, for the entire day, for thirty consecutive days. They are awarded a free lunch at Calabria Pizzeria. Their name will be posted on the Wall of Honors as well as receiving a certificate.


Each month students are eligible to win STUDENT OF THE MONTH AWARD or HONORABLE MENTION. The three students who have the best overall attendance, attitude and academics for the month earn Student of the Month. These students receive a special certificate; their names are posted on the Wall of Honors and are treated to a lunch at a local restaurant. The top student from each class is chosen as the recipient of an HONORABLE MENTION award each month. This student receives a free lunch at Calabria Pizzeria







Daily points are earned in every period. Academic performance, attitude and behavior determine the amount of the points earned.


15 points per day

75 points per week





Grade points are awarded for earning and “A” or “B” in each of your classes.


A = 2 points

B = 1 point

17 points per week maximum






Homework points are earned by completing each homework assignment. Eight homework assignments are assigned each week, two per day, Monday through Thursday. 


0-99 Points Entry Level

100-199 Points Lunch Break - Friday

200-299 Points Lunch Break - Thursday, Friday

300-399 Points Lunch Break - Wednesday, Thursday, Friday

400-499 Points Lunch Break - Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday

500-599 Points Lunch Break – Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday

600-699 Points CAP T- Shirt

700-799 Points Poster or free lunch

800-899 Points Free Lunch

900-999 Points Free Lunch

1000 Points CAP Shorts or Sweats



Student must be on time for school.


Student must receive full credit for both homework assignments.


Student must be on point level for the day.


Student must be productive in morning classes.


5. Student must have approval from Mr. McCaffery.







Daily points are earned in every period. Academic performance, attitude and behavior determine the amount of the points earned.


15 points per day

75 points per week





Grade points are awarded for earning and “A” or “B” in each of your classes.


A = 2 points

B = 1 point

17 points per week maximum






Homework points are earned by completing each homework assignment. Eight homework assignments are assigned each week, two per day, Monday through Thursday.




8 points per week maximum



In order to maintain a more effective program and to protect each individual’s right to an uninterrupted education, certain standards of performance are expected. It is the responsibility of the student to strive to meet these expectations.


The student is expected to:


Attend school everyday.

Be in all classes on time for the entire period.

Make up any work missed during absences.

Be in homeroom by 8:15 a.m.

Get the teacher’s permission before leaving the classroom.

Be prepared for all classes and participate.

Complete all homework/classwork to the best of your ability.

Not be in possession of tobacco products, lighters or matches.

Mind their own affairs and not interfere with others.

Respect school equipment and supplies.

Use good grooming habits and dress appropriately.

Appropriate and respectful language is expected at all times.

Obey the decisions of the staff.

Bring home any communication meant for parents.

Notify the main office if leaving the building.

Report directly to homeroom in the a.m.

Turn in all video games, ipods, cell phones, etc. No inappropriate use of cell phones.

Follow the rules of the Status Level System.

Eat only in the lunchroom.

Clean up any mess he/she is responsible for.

Use the telephone only with the permission of a staff member.

Not loiter in the hall or bathroom.

Not loiter outside the building.

Follow the Alcohol/Drug/Weapon Policy. All violations will result in notifying legal authorities and parents.

Not smoke in the building or on the grounds. It is prohibited by law. Violators will be subject to prosecution.





A Crisis Intervention Counselor will meet with students twice a week, once in a small group and once individually. Additional counseling and related services are also available to students as required. Appointments can also be made with our counselor on an “as needed basis”.







Meetings are held during the year to facilitate an open line of communication between the C.A.P. staff and the parents/guardian. Formal meetings such as “Back to School Night”, “Multi-Cultural Day”, and the C.A.P. “Graduation” give parents an opportunity to get an overview of the program. Parents may request a visit to C.A.P. to discuss their child’s performance.






The school day starts when the student boards the bus, and ends when they step off the bus at the end of the school day. Appropriate behavior is expected on the bus. If a student has a problem on the bus, a suspension from the bus may result. In this case, the student is responsible for arranging his or her own transportation to school.





Students are expected to be well-groomed and neatly dressed in an appropriate and acceptable manner. Hats or other items worn on the head are not allowed to be worn in the classroom. Clothing that has obscene content or makes reference to violence, drugs, etc., will not be permitted in school.





School is in session from 8:15 a.m. to 2:55 p.m. Our students follow the Cranford Public School calendar. If a student is absent or tardy, phone notification from the parent is required. If we are not notified, we will contact the home for verification. If the absence is not valid, the student will be considered truant and will be penalized.






Homework is an extension of the student’s class-work and helps to develop responsibility. Homework is assigned Monday through Thursday. It is the students responsibility to get the homework and hand it in the following day during Homeroom.




Report Cards, Progress Reports and other communications will be sent home during the school year. Students will receive grades each week based on their effort in the classroom. Students can earn 40 academic credits each year towards their high school diploma.





Q: “What makes the C.A.P. program so effective?”


A: You don’t have to look far to answer the question. We are privileged to have a dedicated and loyal staff who choose to work here. A program can only be as effective as the staff who manage it. C.A.P. is fortunate to have quality teachers and teacher assistants who enjoy the daily challenge of working closely with their students.


We have many success stories at C.A.P. Most of the students who have attended here in the past have demonstrated great progress in academics and attitude. After achieving significant progress, students are encouraged to return to their own high schools or Cranford High School. Students can earn a Cranford High School Diploma or receive a diploma from their own district.


Our former students have earned recognition in many areas. They have joined the military, gone on to college or technical school, and been very successful in their chosen fields of employment.


Sports have always been an important part of C.A.P. Our athletes have performed at every level of competition from PAL to Varsity. We have had students earn All-State honors in football, wrestling and soccer. Other students have earned varsity letters in baseball, basketball, football, cross country, soccer, ice hockey, wrestling and track.


C.A.P. students have participated in an array of high school activities including Glee Club, Band, Jazz Band, Art Club, Class Club and the school play, just to name a few.





What C.A.P. Means to Me: by Joe C.


C.A.P. is a place where kids come for help with problems. The kids who come to this school need support and a format that can be found at C.A.P. What makes this program so special in its own way is that all of the teachers take an interest in all of the students.


The teachers would do anything to make the students discover their problems and learn how to deal with them I think when some of the kids in this school conquer some of their problems, they’re going to benefit society in their own special way.


One of the most important things I learned is that I always thought they were trying to get over on me. What I realized is – when you stop and look, you will find someone that really cares about what happens to you.


Student Quote: by Brian M.

“Running away from a problem is not solving it. It only postpones the moment of truth.”


A Poem: by John R.

You Alone


You Alone chose whether that you say is false or true.

You Alone choose who you want to listen to.

You Alone choose the nature of the things you do.

You know no one else can make the choice

But you…….


Student Comment: by Angel N.

“Since coming to C.A.P. I have become more respectful and learned to appreciate people more.”


Student Comment: by Jimmy B.

“ The best thing about the program is the way the teachers help the students with their problems.”




The most important thing that I learned at CAP is to not “bite the hand that feeds you” and that people try to help you for your own good.

By Michael J.


The most important thing that I learned at CAP is to respect others and to give CAP a chance and it will help you a lot.

By John T.


The most important thing I learned at CAP is that if you treat people with respect and kindness, you will go a long way in life.

By Ally J.


The most important thing I learned at CAP is that when you are positive, positive things happen. I also learned that to get respect you have to give it.

By Samira W.


The most important thing I learned at CAP was to stay focused.

By Eric O.


The most important thing I learned at CAP was maturity. I went from a person who was getting suspended every week to one of the quietest people in the school.

By Alexis G.


The most important thing I learned at CAP is finding people that you can trust.

By Philip S.