|Mater Dei Prep High School|
538 Church Street
|Motto||Fide et Fortitudine|
(Faith and Fortitude)
|Religious affiliation(s)||Roman Catholic|
|Founder||Monsignor Robert T. Bulman|
|School district||Diocese of Trenton|
|NCES School ID||00867797|
|Chaplain||Fr. Richard Osborn|
|Enrollment||322 (as of 2017–18)|
|Student to teacher ratio||11.7:1|
|Color(s)|| Navy blue|
Columbia blue and
|Song||Seraphs are a Powerhouse|
|Athletics conference||Shore Conference|
|Rival||Saint John Vianney|
|Publication||Insights (literary magazine)|
|Patron saint||Blessed Virgin Mary|
Mater Dei Prep: A Catholic Preparatory School (commonly known as "Mater Dei High School") is a four-year Catholic coeducational high school serving students in ninth through twelfth grades, located in the New Monmouth section of Middletown Township, in Monmouth County, New Jersey, United States.
Mater Dei is no longer part of St. Mary Parish and operates under the supervision of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Trenton. The school has been accredited by AdvancED since June 2013 and is a member of the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA).
In February 2015, the pastor of St. Mary Parish announced that the school would be closing at the end of the 2014-15 school year, in the wake of chronic fiscal deficits. A few days after the announcement, it was disclosed that the Parish Finance Council had agreed to a two-month extension in order to raise the $1 million needed to remain open. Through the Seraph's Fund, and massive efforts by the student body, $1.5 million was raised in just six weeks, and the school managed to stay open.
As of the 2017–18 school year, the school had an enrollment of 322 students and 27.5 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 11.7:1. The school's student body was 77.6% (250) White, 10.9% (35) Black, 5.9% (19) Asian and 5.6% (18) Hispanic.
The school was founded in 1961 by the Reverend Monsignor Robert T. Bulman and is located on a small portion of the parish's 32-acre (130,000 m2) campus. The school attracts students from over 30 parochial, private, and public schools in Monmouth County and Middlesex County. The school maintains an average enrollment of 435 students in grades nine through twelve.
The virtual learning program began in 2005 and ended in 2010. Virtual learning classes included all levels, including Advanced Placement, in Math, Foreign Languages (Latin, Italian, and Chinese) as well as History.
The Mater Dei Prep Seraphs compete in Division B Central of the Shore Conference, an athletic conference comprised of private and public high schools in Monmouth and Ocean counties along the Jersey Shore. The conference operates under the jurisdiction of the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA). With 212 students in grades 10-12, the school was classified by the NJSIAA for the 2019–20 school year as Non-Public B for most athletic competition purposes, which included schools with an enrollment of 37 to 366 students in that grade range (equivalent to Group I for public schools). The school was classified by the NJSIAA as Non-Public Group III for football for 2018–2020.
The school participates as the host school / lead agency for joint cooperative football team with Ranney School. The co-op program operates under an agreement scheduled to expire at the end of the 2023–24 school year.
The boys track team won the Non-Public Group B spring track state championship in 1967, 1973, 1999, 2000, 2006 and 2017-2019. The program has won 10 state title, which is tied for eighth-most among all schools in New Jersey
The baseball team won the Non-Public B South championship in 1967, 1968 and 1970.
The girls cross country team won the Group I state championship in 1976, 1977, 1987, 1991 and 1992, and won the Non-Public Group B state title in 1982-1985. The nine state championships won by the program are ranked fifth in New Jersey.
The girls basketball team won the Group I state championship in 1980 (defeating Benedictine Academy in the tournament final) and won the Non-Public Group B title in 1990 (vs. Immaculate Conception High School of Montclair). The team won the 1980 Group I title with a 64-52 win in the finals against Benedictine Academy.
The boys soccer team won the Non-Public Group B state championship in 1981 and 1983, against runner-up Eastern Christian High School both years in the finals of the tournament). The 1983 team finished the season with a 16-4 record after defeating Eastern Christian by a score of 3-1 at Mercer County Park in the Parochial B finals.
The girls spring track team was the Group I state champion in 1981 and won the Non-Public Group B title in 1982, 1983 and 2000.
The boys track team won the indoor track state championship in Non-Public Group B in 1981.
The boys cross country running team won the Non-Public Group B state championship in 1984, 1985, 1997, 1999, 2007 and 2017. The program's seven state titles are tied for tenth-most in the state.
The football team won the Non-Public Group II state sectional championship in 2016, winning by a score of 26-20 in the tournament final against Holy Spirit High School on a touchdown scored on a hook and lateral play with 11 seconds left in the game.
The boys track team won the indoor relay state championship in Non-Public Group B in 2018 and 2019. The girls team won the Group II title in 2013, In 2018, the boys' winter track team finished their season with the program's first state indoor relay championship title and was runner-up in the Non-Public B state championships. In outdoor track, the team set numerous school records and took home both a sectional title and their second consecutive Non-Public B group state title in June 2018. The team won the Non-Public B state championship in 1967, 1973, 1999, 2000, 2006, 2017 and 2018.
- Mary Kay Adams (born 1962, class of 1979), television actress.
- Joe Benning (born 1956, class of 1975), member of the Vermont Senate who has represented the Caledonia District since 2011.
- Gerard Canonico (born 1989), original Broadway cast member of the musical, Spring Awakening.
- Billy Devaney (born 1955, class of 1973), ESPN football analyst who was General Manager of the St. Louis Rams from 2008 to 2011.
- Nick Gillespie (born 1963, class of 1981), editor in chief of Reason magazine from 2000 to 2008 and of its online video website Reason.tv from 2008 to 2017.
- Bob Halloran, sportscaster and author of Irish Thunder: The Hard Life and Times of Micky Ward.
- Robert Harper (1951–2020), stage, film and television actor.
- Ted Kurdyla, film, television and stage producer.
- Mark LaMura (1948-2017), actor who has played the role of Mark Dalton on All My Children.
- Brian Williams (born 1959, class of 1977), anchor and managing editor for NBC Nightly News.
- Richie Williams (born 1970, class of 1988), former player for the MetroStars, who was an assistant coach for the New York Red Bulls.
- Mission & Philosophy, Mater Dei Prep. Accessed August 15, 2011.
- 2010 - 2011 FACULTY & STAFF DIRECTORY, Mater Dei Prep. Accessed August 15, 2011.
- Tuition, Mater Dei Prep. Accessed February 3, 2020.
- Facts & Figures, Mater Dei Prep. Accessed August 15, 2011.
- Mater Dei Prep, AdvancED. Accessed February 3, 2020.
- Mater Dei Prep, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed October 20, 2020.
- Shore Conference Realignment for 2018-2019 and 2019-2020, Shore Conference. Accessed November 15, 2020.
- Extracurricular Activities & Clubs, Mater Dei Prep. Accessed August 15, 2011.
- School data for Mater Dei Prep High School, National Center for Education Statistics. Accessed September 1, 2020.
- School Finder, Roman Catholic Diocese of Trenton. Accessed January 21, 2018.
- Spahr, Rob. "Mater Dei Prep in Middletown announces it will close in June", NJ Advance Media for NJ.com, February 3, 2015. Accessed February 4, 2015. "Just days after a planned celebration for its 50th anniversary, Mater Dei Prep will reportedly close its doors. Citing a severe, multi-year financial deficit, Father Jeff Kegley - the pastor of St. Mary Parish - announced in a letter to parents on Tuesday that the coed Catholic high school would close in June at the end of its current school year."
- Kegley, Fr. Jeff. "ANNOUNCEMENT/Press Release: Parish announces extension for Mater Dei Prep to raise needed funds." Archived February 6, 2015, at the Wayback Machine, Mater Dei Prep, February 5, 2015. Accessed February 9, 2015.
- O'Neill, Natalie; and Buiso, Gary. "Brian Williams hasn't donated a dime to his cash-strapped high school", New York Post, February 22, 2015. Accessed May 5, 2015. "The school has raised $427,000, but is still waiting to hear from its most famous graduate, according to Palmer."
- Member Schools, Shore Conference. Accessed November 15, 2020.
- League & Conference Officers/Affiliated Schools 2020-2021, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed December 11, 2016.
- NJSIAA General Public School Classifications 2019–2020, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 20, 2020.
- NJSIAA Football Public School Classifications 2018–2020, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association, finalized August 2019. Accessed October 20, 2020.
- NJSIAA Fall Cooperative Sports Programs, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed December 1, 2020.
- NJSIAA Spring Track Summary of Group Titles Boys, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed October 20, 2020.
- NJSIAA Baseball Championship History, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 20, 2020.
- NJSIAA Girls Cross Country State Group Champions, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed October 20, 2020.
- NJSIAA Group Basketball Past Champions, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 20, 2020.
- McLaughlin, Bill. "Mater Dei wins title in Group I", Asbury Park Press, March 22, 1982. Accessed January 17, 2021, via Newspapers.com. "At the moment when everyone connected with Mater Dei girls basketball was noisily celebrating the school's first state basketball championship, made possible by a 64-52 victory over Benedictine Academy in the NJSIAA Group I championship game, the handful of Seraph seniors on the team were quietly hugging and kissing at center court."
- NJSIAA History of Boys Soccer, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed October 20, 2020.
- Amsel, Michael. "Mater Dei lands Parochial B title", Asbury Park Press, November 19, 1983. Accessed January 27, 2021, via Newspapers.com. "Mater Dei soccer coach Tony Scorciolla was having trouble finding the right words to express his feeling of joy.... 'Something like this' was Scorciolla's way of describing the NJSIAA Parochial B soccer championship, which his Mater Dei team captured last night with a 3-1 victory over Eastern Christian at Mercer County Park."
- History of Boys' Team Tennis Championship Tournament, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 20, 2020.
- NJSIAA Girls Spring Track Summary of Group Titles, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed December 1, 2020.
- NJSIAA Indoor Group Championship History, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 20, 2020.
- History of NJSIAA Girls Team Tennis Championships, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed October 20, 2020.
- "Mater Dei set stage for Parochial showdown", Asbury Park Press, November 4, 1982. That much was made official at Mercer County Park, West Windsor Township, yesterday when undefeated Red Bank Catholic (21-0) and Mater Del (19-3) swept state honors in Parochial A and B, respectively to set up an all-Shore showdown next week, probably Tuesday at a site and time to be announced. Red Bank Catholic's Caseys blanked Immaculate Heart, 5-0, In Parochial A and Mater Del swept Pope John of Sparta Township, 5-0, in Parochial B."
- NJSIAA Boys Cross Country State Group Champions, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed October 20, 2020.
- NJSIAA Softball Championship History, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed November 20, 2020.
- Zedalis, Joe. "Mater Dei game-winning hook-and-lateral is CBS MaxPreps national Video of the Week", NJ Advance Media for NJ.com, December 6, 2016. Accessed December 11, 2016. "Mater Dei's game-winning hook-and-lateral play with 11 seconds to go in the Non-Public, Group 2 title game against Holy Spirit Saturday was named the CBS MaxPreps national Video of the Week."
- History of the NJSIAA Indoor Relay Championships, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed December 1, 2020.
- Koob, Andrew. "A Night of Firsts: East Orange and Mater Dei boys, St. Dominic girls claim first indoor state relay titles", NJ Advance Media for NJ.com, January 19, 2018. Accessed January 20, 2019. "All three did so as East Orange took home the Group 4 boys title, Mater Dei cruised to the Non-Public B boys championship and St. Dominic hoisted the Non-Public B girls trophy by the end of day two of a four-day stretch of relay championships.... Mater Dei made their first indoor state relay title look like a breeze, collecting 50 points in the first seven events en route to a 56-point performance."
- Carino, Jerry. "Track: Mater Dei Prep boys win another state title; wild meet for St. Rose's Antognoli", Asbury Park Press, June 2, 2018. Accessed January 20, 2018. "The Mater Dei Prep boys track team’s performance this weekend was the latter. The Seraphs racked up a whopping 99 points to defend their NJSIAA Non-Public B title at Central Regional High School.... He was motivated by Mater Dei’s second-place finish at February’s indoor Non-Public B meet, when Bishop Eustace nipped the Seraphs for the crown."
- Summary of Group Titles, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed December 1, 2020.
- Oliwa, Lori Anne. "Mater Dei Prep Celebrates 50 Years of Musicals", The Monitor, July 3, 2014. Accessed February 3, 2020. "'The performing arts program at Mater Dei has produced a tremendous amount of talent,' Meenan added, noting the names Mary Kay Adams from television series The Guiding Light; Mark Lamura from All My Children; Ted Kurdyla, a producer and director in Hollywood; Kerrianne Spellman, a Broadway actress; Robert Harper; Emmy and Grammy Award-winner Trudy Craney; Hollywood actor and musician Bob McEvilly; Joe Rapolla, musical legend and current chair of the music department at Monmouth University; Robert Waldron, a well-known director; musician Robert Marriner, and actresses Kathy Smith Logan and Catherine Tarpey."
- Senator Joe Benning, Vermont General Assembly. Accessed January 5, 2018. "Joe Benning of Lyndon, Caledonia County, Republican, was born in Long Branch, New Jersey, on December 7, 1956. Occupation: trial lawyer. Joe graduated from Mater Dei High School in New Monmouth, New Jersey, in 1975"
- Hemhauser, Danielle. "Setting the stage: Setting the stage", Asbury Park Press, March 28, 2006. Accessed July 19, 2008. "Mater Dei High School is connected to Broadway through Gerard Canonico, 16, a junior from Matawan."
- Garafolo, Mike. "Monmouth County's Billy Devaney now making waves as GM of the St. Louis Rams", The Star-Ledger, April 21, 2009. Accessed July 20, 2011. "'He's very happy right now. And I can tell he is, too,' said Mike Corley, Devaney's best friend from before their days together at Mater Dei High School in New Monmouth.... It was a fitting career path for a self-proclaimed "draftnik" (before there were draftniks) who used to take the bus from Leonardo -- a section of Middletown -- to Port Authority in Manhattan to pick up a copy of Street & Smith's draft guide."
- Gillespie, Nick. "Really Strange Bedfellows IIA final word (for now) on libertarians vs. conservatives", Reason (magazine), December 20, 2001. Accessed February 3, 2020. "It's been a long, long while since I've been accused of impairing the morals of a minor (really). In fact, the last time I can remember such a claim being leveled against me was back in high school when I coaxed some classmates at good old Mater Dei High School into seeing Monty Python's Life of Brian rather than a less theologically charged movie."
- Staff. "Halloran-Marinella", Asbury Park Press, October 3, 1989. Accessed July 23, 2017. "Karen Marinella and Bob Halloran were married Aug. 12 at St. Bonaventure's Church.... The bridegroom graduated from Mater Dei High School, Middletown Township, and Washington and Lee University, Lexington, Va. He is the sports director for WCVX-TV 58, Hyannis."
- Patrick, Wally. "Former Middletown resident finds he likes life at Frank's Place", Asbury Park Press, October 19, 1987. Accessed February 13, 2021, via Newspapers.com. "Robert Harper got his introduction to acting as a student at Mater Dei High School, Middletown Township, in the late '60s."
- "Mater Dei to present ‘50 Years of Musicals’ on June 18", The Monmouth Journal, June 13, 2014. Accessed February 3, 2020. "Many talented individuals graced the Mater Dei Prep stage during those years. Returning alumni slated to perform include Grammy- and Emmy-award-winner Trudy Craney; Hollywood producer and director Ted Kurdyla; Broadway, National and World Tour actors Kerrianne Spellman (Les Miserables) and David J.V. Meenan (A Chorus Line, 42nd Street); music legend Joe Rapolla; Hollywood actor and musician Robert McEvilly; director Robert Waldron; musician Robert Marriner; Kathy Smith Logan and Catherine Tarpey."
- Spoto, Mary Ann. "Long time Red Bank resident questions Brian Williams' Christmas mugging story", NJ Advance Media for NJ.com, February 9, 2015. Accessed February 3, 2020. "Murphy's friend, actor and New Jersey native Mark LaMura, said Williams lives in a society that likes to build up celebrities and then tear them down. LaMura, who graduated Mater Dei High School in Middletown 10 years ahead of Williams, said he hopes the professional career of his fellow alumnus can survive."
- Chmiel, David. "His Heart Belongs to Jersey: Anchorman Brian Williams is as comfortable hosting Saturday Night Live as he is interviewing world leaders for NBC Nightly News. An avowed Springsteen fanatic, car nut, and adrenaline junkie, the Middletown native still clings to his Garden State roots.", New Jersey Monthly, June 9, 2008. Accessed July 20, 2011. "NBC anchor Brian Williams returns to Mater Dei High School in New Monmouth, where he was a member of the class of '77."
- Giase, Frank. "Red Bulls fire longtime assistant coaches Richie Williams, Des McAleenan", The Star-Ledger, February 28, 2011. Accessed July 20, 2011. "Williams, a Mater Dei graduate who played eight years in MLS, including stints with the MetroStars in 2001 and 2003, was entering his sixth year as an assistant coach, but he has been much more important to the team than that."