Editor's Notebook: Nov. 5 BOE Meeting
● By Rebecca K. Abma
Whether or not to fund a feasibility study for sending students out-of-district for high school, grants awarded by the Midland Park Public Education Foundation and a Nov. 13 combined parent organization meeting to showcase opportunities at the high school were the highlights of the Nov. 5 Board of Education meeting.
Board President Bill Sullivan lead a discussion on the possibility of funding a feasibility study to explore entering a send-receive relationship with Northern Highlands Regional High School The study would cost $25,000, and Sullivan lead with saying he wanted to have a resolution on the table for the next meeting.
Board members did not agree, however, with each board member speaking out as to why he or she were opposed to sending students to the larger district. Primary concerns included losing the close-knit community and personalized attention a small district has to offer, and a number of intangible qualities that a study couldn’t measure.
Other concerns with the study include where will the funding come from, if the study comes out in favor of sending students to NHRHS, will the school accept students, and what exactly will the study look at?
The board’s discussion concluded with Superintendent of Schools Dr. Marie Cirasella planning to reach out to Northern Highland Regional High School for a more formal meeting to discuss the matter further before committing to fund a study.
Members of the public present urged the board to have a study performed, citing concerns with aging facilities, shrinking class sizes, declining property values and high taxes. Residents also expressed frustration at the governing body’s apparent disinterest in moving forward with funding a study.
In other news, the board accepted the Resignation of Joyce DeMartino as a Science and Special Ed teacher at the high school, effective December.
Dr. Ciracella thanked the Midland Park Public Education Foundation for donations of teacher grants totaling $12,000.
The district is still waiting to hear from the state regarding grants it applied for several months ago. Business Administrator Stacy Garvey said to her knowledge no districts have been notified of receiving grants, despite published reports to the contrary. The district is also awaiting plans from Honeywell regarding energy upgrades through an Energy Savings Initiative Program.
Dates to Remember:
The combined elementary and junior-senior high PTAs are holding a joint meeting on Weds., Nov. 13 at 7pm at the high school library. The event is titled “Small School, Big Results,” is aimed at showing parents the opportunities available in the district.
The Midland Park High School Drama club is performing two fall dramas: Murder at the Banquet and Alice in Wonderland. Performance will be held Friday, Nov. 15 at 7:30pm, Saturday, Nov. 16 at 2pm and Saturday, Nov. 16 at 7:30 pm. The Saturday evening performance is a dinner thearter. Tickets are $10 general admission, $15 Dine in admission. Dinner will be served at 6pm.
The next Board of Education meeting will be held on Nov. 19 at 8pm.