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How Pinelands Regional High School Reduced Students Cutting Class by 60%

“SmartPass is more than a digital hall pass tool. It’s a student accountability system that has transformed our school and helps keep students where they are supposed to be– in class.”

Pinelands Regional High School
New Jersey
Using SmartPass Since 2022-23
Using SmartPass For

Maximizing class time, Making student movement easier, Reducing chaos in hallways, and Increasing student safety

Rich DiMauro
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Like many high schools, Pinelands Regional High School was facing unruly hallways, class cutting, and students wandering the building when they should have been in class. The New Jersey high school had to find a way to bounce back to normalcy after going remote during COVID. However, they also had to navigate changes in student discipline and accountability that cropped up in the aftermath of the pandemic.

After exploring options, Pinelands implemented SmartPass as their digital hall pass accountability system. Read on to learn more about Pinelands Regional High School's journey, their 60% reduction in class-cutting incidents, and the transformative impact of SmartPass on the school day.

Before SmartPass:

Rich DiMauro, Instructional Technology Coach/Special Education Intervention at Pinelands Regional High School describes what the school day looked like before they brought on SmartPass as their digital hall pass solution.

“It was super chaotic. I remember kids just wandering around without passes. They could say they had never gotten a pass or that they left it in the bathroom. We were using lanyards as passes but the school ran out, so kids were freely roam the halls. They could strategically spend 15 minutes on the first floor, another 15 on the second floor, and yet another 15 on the third floor, easily slipping through the cracks and cutting class. When we saw students in the hall, we had no way of identifying who was supposed to be there.”

Implementing SmartPass

Pinelands decided to implement SmartPass only 3 weeks before the start of the school year, which made Dimauro nervous. As the instructional technology coach and a former teacher, Dimauro knew how much goes into onboarding a new program, then training teachers and students.  

“This was going to change every single teacher and the way that they operate in their classroom. How students asked to use the bathroom is a major piece of classroom management and education. We were going to change everything.”

Pinelands worked hard to get everything ready ahead of time and made sure all students, teachers, and rooms were in the system. When it was time to roll it out, the only thing teachers had to do was click "create pass" and type in the name of the student.

DiMauro shares how they explained SmartPass to students. “We’re not trying to make your life more difficult or catch you in the act to get you in trouble. We need to hold you accountable, which means making sure you’re in class when you’re supposed to be” 

He also emphasizes the importance of security and safety in cases of emergency. “We need to ensure that, God forbid, something goes wrong at school and there’s a fire or there's a bomb threat, and we need to evacuate. We need to know where everyone is. Part of that is making sure that when you say you're going to the bathroom, that you are going to the right bathroom."

Positive Impacts and Results:

By the end of the academic year, the number of write-ups for class-cutting plummeted from 1,131 to 463, marking a 58% reduction. DiMauro emphasizes, "SmartPass has fundamentally altered the landscape of our school, positively influencing student behavior and promoting a sense of responsibility."

“It used to be easy for students to stroll through the halls, but now it’s not worth it for them to get written up for cutting class.” DiMauro explained. They changed their behavior because they realized, "Hey, I can't just walk around the school all day. I can't just say, 'I don't want to go to Spanish; I'm just gonna walk around.'" Now, when a hall monitor spots a student in the hallway, they just check the system and can see whether or not the student is supposed to be there.  

Evolution of Pineland High School Using SmartPass

Pinelands introduced kiosks in every classroom, enabling students to generate passes seamlessly without disrupting instruction. 

Before teachers were constantly stopping class and spending too much time trying to monitor halls. Now, students can easily approach and say, "Hey, can I make a pass?" They go to the kiosk, make the pass, and they're on their way. This minimizes interruptions to instruction because, in the past, students might skip a class, go to the bathroom, make a pass, and claim to be somewhere they're not.

Pinelands now uses SmartPass not only in the day-to-day task of ensuring kids are where they should be, but also in IEP meetings and 504 meetings when parents inquire about their child's academic performance. A typical scenario involves a parent asking, "Why is my kid failing this class?" Using the data provided by SmartPass, teachers can highlight issues such as“their child has consistently made a pass every single day for 10 minutes over the last three month and missed class time.” Utilizing this data has become an essential aspect of Pinelands approach as it enables everyone to stick to the facts and connect all the dots.

Support and Feedback:

Pinelands Regional High School commends the outstanding support provided by the SmartPass team. 

“The support team at SmartPass is one of the best that I've worked with. I know that when I reach out for support, I'll get an answer within five minutes from a live person who is going to work with me.”

The school surveyed their teachers asking “Do you like SmartPass?” and 100% percent of teachers responded “yes!” Many emphasize its user-friendly interface and the positive impact on classroom management


SmartPass has seamlessly woven itself into the fabric of Pinelands Regional High School's culture, reshaping how students navigate the school environment and providing invaluable data for informed decision-making. The school is on track to reduce class cutting even further this year!

“There's very few programs that everyone is adamant about keeping, whether it’s because of  budget cuts or problems with the tool. However, there’s never a question around SmartPass because we need it. SmartPass is truly ingrained in the culture here at Pinelands where it's part of the vernacular. We don’t even say hall passes anymore, We say “how many SmartPasses does he have for the week?”

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