About Our Tri-District » Dr. Tara Beams, Superintendent

Dr. Tara Beams, Superintendent

WELCOME BACK 2023-2024Opening Day

A Message from Dr. Beams


Dear Henry Hudson Tri-District Community!


I am so excited to welcome our students, staff, and families back for the 2023-2024 school year. I hope that your summer vacations were relaxing, filled with adventures, good health and a lot of joy and laughter. The opportunity to recharge and refuel our minds and bodies over the summer is necessary so that we can return to school ready to learn, grow and explore as you navigate your educational journey.


Exciting Changes for this Year

At HHRS, we are committed to finding programs, classes, clubs, and other avenues to truly ignite students’ passions. This means that the faculty and staff are in a continuous cycle of improvement and enhancement, which has been recognized as part of our most recent accreditation by the Middle States Association. This year, we are continuing to enhance our middle school students’ experience through the introduction of more electives, such as our popular Television Production classes and new and expanded opportunities in the arts, eSports, and athletics. We have added new courses to our STEAM academy, including a Sophomore engineering course, and will have a wide range of staff teaching courses to diversify the students’ learning. Finally, we continue to add to our AP offerings with AP Music Theory and AP Human Geography, which will now be offered as early as freshman year as an introduction to the rigor and expectations of Advanced Placement.


At AHES and HES, our administrative team and staff are fully committed to ensuring that all of our students are learning and acquiring the skills, strategies, and understanding needed to chart a successful educational path to middle school and through high school graduation. After a year of deep analysis of student data including academic, social, and emotional data provided by multiple measures and conversations with staff members at all grade levels, we understand that our teachers need the time to deliver high-quality, differentiated instruction and our students need time to apply the skills that they learn daily in a meaningful way. In addition, we continue to renew our commitment to social - emotional learning and making sure that our school community is a safe, inclusive, and nurturing environment. To that end, this year, we have made some modifications to our master schedule, which prioritizes our academic subject areas and ensures our students have a well-rounded and diverse offering of related arts classes. In all grades, SEL lessons delivered by our guidance counselor will be a part of our eight related arts periods weekly. In grades 3-6, we will increase math minutes to ensure that our curricula is being delivered and our students are engaging with the learning with the appropriate level of rigor. In addition, in grades 3-6, students will have social studies and science every day preparing them for the academic stamina they will need in middle and high school. In grades K-2, math will remain 60 minutes, which is appropriate for this developmental level, and social studies and science will still be split between the marking periods, however, the periods are extended to allow for more application. Our K-2 students will also have a designated block of Fundations, which provides them with the essential phonics, spelling, and handwriting skills needed for success in literacy.


Our staff is also engaging in continuous improvement, development, and growth. We will implement instructional coaches in all three Tri-District schools to help provide daily support, coaching, and collaboration for our staff to ensure they are planning and developing lessons to help reach all students and ensure learning. We have embarked on a true, year-long implementation of professional learning communities, where our teachers will learn with each other and use their collective expertise, talents, and experience to help discover strategies that will engage our students.


We are really looking forward to the incredible opportunities that this new school year will bring to your students and I cannot wait to see all that our students will accomplish with the guidance of our incredible staff. I wish you nothing but the best for the 2023-2024 school year!


As always, stay healthy, stay safe, and stay KIND!


With gratitude,


Dr. Tara Beams

Superintendent of Schools

"I am so honored and extremely humbled to be given the distinguished opportunity to lead the Henry Hudson Tri-District educational community and work collaboratively with and learn from the incredible administrators, teachers, staff, families, community members, and, most importantly the STUDENTS. I would like to thank the members of the Boards of Education from Atlantic Highlands, Highlands, and Henry Hudson Regional for this opportunity. This was a rigorous process, which only demonstrated the three Board’s commitment to the students of the Tri-District and the community as a whole. These Boards, Dr. Compton and all of the members of the Tri-District education community have created an incredible framework for excellence that, I am confident, TOGETHER we will take to the next level!" Dr. Beams

Dr. Tara Beams, Superintendent

For Immediate Release
April 20, 2021
Dr. Tara Beams Appointed as Next Tri-District Superintendent
     The Boards of Education of the Atlantic Highlands, Highlands, and Henry Hudson Regional School Districts that make up the Tri-District voted last night to appoint Dr. Tara Beams as the next Superintendent of Schools, replacing Dr. Susan Compton, who announced in July that she will retire at the end of this school year. 
     With the appointment as Superintendent for the Tri-District, Dr. Beams is certainly bringing her career in education full-circle. After several years as a public relations executive in New York City, Dr. Beams began her career in education as a long-term substitute at Highlands Elementary School and was eventually hired as a fourth grade teacher in the Long Branch Public School District. After four years in grade 4, Dr. Beams moved to Long Branch Middle School where she used her background in performing arts, television production and media studies as the theater and television production teacher for grades 6-8. She was quickly promoted to head teacher for the visual and performing arts department and was eventually named the 2008 Long Branch Public School Teacher of the Year as well as Monmouth County Teacher of the Year. Dr. Beams decided to enter high school education and was hired as the media studies and television production teacher for Sayreville Public Schools. She also was one of four teachers selected to lead the Peer Leadership program and was trained by the Peer Group program and the Princeton Center for Leadership training. As an aspiring leader, Dr. Beams also became the professional development supervisor for Sayreville HS and led the implementation of school-wide PLCs, the district's mentoring program and began the implementation of the high school's first blended learning environment. 
     In 2012, Dr. Beams advanced her career with her first administrative position as the Principal of the Gerald H. Woehr Elementary School in the Plumsted Township School District. As principal, Dr. Beams led the staff in the transition to the Common Core Standards, redefined the K-5 basic skills program and designed and implemented data-driven, authentic assessment and progress monitoring protocols to ensure student achievement and articulation amongst the grade levels. This work led to Dr. Beams' appointment by the Edison Public School District where she served as Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction, PK-5, serving approximately 7400 students and 585 staff members over 13 PK-5 buildings. In Edison, Dr. Beams successfully implemented a 1:1 technology initiative for all grades K-5 in just under two years. This led to a full digital transformation of all curricula, fully implementing digital resources for grades 3-5, while using a blend of traditional and digital resources in grades K-2. Dr. Beams also led her team to develop rigorous, inquiry-based, comprehensive K-5 curricula in all content areas to support technology implementation and a blended learning model of instruction. The work completed in Edison by Dr. Beams and her team was the subject of case studies conducted by Lexia Learning, Amazon Education and was featured at conferences led by Discovery Education. In 2017, Dr. Beams was published in eSchoolNews for her expertise and success in implementing blended learning environments.   
     Most recently, Dr. Beams has been serving as both the Assistant Superintendent and Acting Superintendent for the Monmouth Ocean-Educational Services Commission and the Bayshore Jointure Commission's Shore Center for Students with Autism. In this role, Dr. Beams has successfully implemented innovative special education programs and has worked collaboratively with her leadership team and staff to implement technology, community-based learning opportunities and vocational training for general education students and students with autism. As acting superintendent, Dr. Beams serves on the Monmouth County Superintendent's Equity Committee and the Monmouth County Women in Educational Leadership Committee. One of her most cherished roles is as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Monmouth Ocean Foundation for Children, an organization who is currently raising funds and developing a continuing education and vocational skills training program for adults with autism.
     Dr. Beams has been an adjunct professor at Monmouth University in the School of Communications, was a member and President and Vice President of the Long Branch Board of Education and was a member of the Amazon Education Advisory Board. A graduate of Wall High School, Dr. Beams earned her B.A. in Journalism and Mass Communications from Rutgers University, a Master's in Educational Administration and Supervision from the University of Phoenix and in 2017, she earned Ed.D. in e-Learning and Technology from Northcentral University.
     Dr. Beams is an avid musical theater performer and soccer enthusiast. She lives with her husband Daniel, their 14-year-old daughter, Tess and their SATO mix, Mina in Oceanport, NJ. 
     Dr. Susan Compton has served as Tri-District Superintendent since 2013.  She informed the Atlantic Highlands, Highlands, and Henry Hudson Regional Boards of Education in early 2020 of her intention to retire at the end of the 2020-2021 school year.  Dr. Compton is confident that Dr. Beams will take the Tri-District to the next level of academic excellence and stated that it will be a smooth transition to new leadership. Dr. Compton also expressed her thanks to the Tri-District administration, staff, students, and community for all of their support over the past eight years.