History of Westminster Nursery School 1951 – 2014
Westminster Nursery School was established by the Session of the Presbyterian Church of Toms River in November 1951 with six pupils attending. In 1969 WNS relocated from Washington Street to the new church building at 1070 Hooper Ave. WNS has grown into the oldest and largest church-related non-profit nursery school in the state of New Jersey. Fall 2010 brought a new facet to Westminster’s offerings to our community of families with the opening of our Kindergarten program. The Fall 2014 enrollment of 318 children consists of 20 Kindergarten students, 157 four year olds, 112 three year olds and 29 two and a half year olds. WNS is open to all religions and communities. People travel from as far as Manahawkin, Bricktown and Manchester to attend WNS.
The school is housed in the education wing of the Presbyterian Church of Toms River. The Westminster Nursery School Supervisory Board is comprised of six church members – all with college degrees in education – plus the director of the school. This board makes decisions regarding policy, hiring and budgeting as well as offers support to the school in various other ways. The WNS board reports to the Commission of Christian Education and then to the Session of the Presbyterian Church of Toms River. Westminster’s staff and school meet the State of New Jersey Department of Children and Families requirements for licensing. The WNS Board has, however, established higher educational certifications for our teachers than those required by state licensing for preschools.
The spiritual growth of our WNS&K children is enhanced through the special church coordinated program called “Rainbow Kids.” Assemblies are provided by the children’s minister and Michael Barozzie from the church music staff. Parents are invited to the programs three to four times throughout the year.
Westminster Nursery School wishes to take this opportunity to express our gratitude to our many faithful supporters. Westminster pledges to continue to reach out and serve the children and families of the expanding community.