Minutes for October 5, 2009 Archived MinutesSkip Navigation
regular business meeting of the Board of Education was held this day in the Warren Middle School Library. The following is a record of that meeting.
I. CALL TO ORDER: The meeting was called to order at 7:07 p.m. by the Board President, Mrs. Monahan.
OPEN PUBLIC MEETING STATEMENT - Mrs. Monahan read the following Statement:
In accordance with the provisions New Jersey Open Public Meetings Law, the Board of Education has caused notice of this meeting to be posted in the Board Office and in the Township Office, mailed to the Courier News and Echoes Sentinel, and filed with the Clerk of the Township of Warren.
II. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE - Mrs. Monahan led the assembly in the Pledge of Allegiance.
III. ROLL CALL
Present: Sue Burman, Roberta Monahan, Dr. Gregory Przybylski, David Ricci, Tony Sardis, Mildred Spiller, Patricia Toubin, and Kathleen Winter
Absent: Gina Voorhees arrived at 7:13 p.m.
Also Present: Dr. James Crisfield, Superintendent, Peter Daquila, School Business Administrator/Board Secretary, and members of the staff and public
- 2008-2009 Violence and Vandalism Report - Public Hearing
Dr. Crisfield presented the 2008/2009 Violence & Vandalism report. He noted that the State altered the reporting guidelines and that has increased the number of incidents being reported.
Mrs. Spiller moved the following:
RESOLVED, the Board of Education approves the minutes, of the following meeting:
September 29, 2009 public session
The motion was seconded by Mrs. Winter and approved by 6-2 roll call vote. (Mrs. Burman
and Mr. Sardis voted no.)
VI. CORRESPONDENCE AND INFORMATION
The superintendent reported the following fire drills had been held.
- Fire Drills
September 19, 24
September 9, 30
September 15, 25
September 9, 15
September 14, 22
Mrs. Voorhees arrived at this point in the meeting.
- Green Brook Regionalization Meeting (11/19/09)
Mrs. Monahan reported that Ms. Trudy Doyle, Executive County Superintendent, Somerset County, will speak about regionalization in the county. She has been limited to submit two regionalization plans and neither plan includes Warren.
VII. PRESIDENT'S REMARKS
Mrs. Monahan withheld her comments based on the meeting topics and the anticipated lengthy discussions.
VIII. COMMITTEE REPORTS
- Watchung Hills Soccer Association Field Improvements
Mr. Daquila reported that WHSA is willing to donate $4,000 for topsoil and grass seed on the "bare" spots on the Warren Middle School field. WHSA will hire and pay the contractor.
- Math Grouping - Grade 5, Mt. Horeb School
Dr. Crisfield presented a summary of the Mt. Horeb grade 5 Math discussion and as a result of the public comments and board member questions, an action plan for the Mt. Horeb 5th grade math students.
Dr Przybylski stated that in the future the district should have standards for all 4 elementary schools and waivers. He also summarized the facts of the Mt. Horeb 5th grade math situation.
Mr. Ricci is in agreement with Dr Przybylski's comments. He noted that this appears to be a one-time situation and resources should be applied to insure the Mt. Horeb students achieve high level math learning.
Mrs. Winter agreed to comments made by Dr Przybylski and Mr. Ricci.
Mrs. Voorhees noted that from the provided information standards need to be adapted in the district. She noted that each student will excel at different subjects and the issue of waiving needs to be addressed.
Mrs. Toubin feels there was a communication breakdown that caused the issue and the board did not decide on this issue.
Mr. Sardis asked why 2 high math classes weren't being provided. Dr. Crisfield noted it is a scheduling and class grouping issue. Mr. Sardis asked about the NJASK scores and the progression of the scores from year to year.
Mrs. Spiller commented that monitoring and feedback will need to be done and reported to the BOE and the parents on the changes made to Mt. Horeb math this year.
Mrs. Monahan agreed that feedback is imperative and necessary to evaluate the changes to 5th grade math at Mt. Horeb to verify high level learning.
Mrs. Burman is concerned as to whether the board has violated district policy in changing the curriculum. She feels the communication about the changes to 5th grade math were not proper and the district reacted to parental comments. She feels the evaluation of the NJASK scores is not a surprise. She also feels the board has set precedent by accepting WHSA's donation to create a Middle School soccer team in a restricted time frame and believes the board should give the same consideration to the MH parents and the 5th grade math issue.
Mr. Sardis asked for clarification about scheduling additional math sections during the 3 existing math classes.
The board discussed the options and possibilities regarding scheduling.
Mr. Sardis wanted to clarify the options regarding the math issue
#1 - leave classes as is
#2 - hire an additional teacher to segregate the students
#3 - group the students by the ranking and have no waivers.
#4 - have two high math classes and 1 regular class
Dr Przybylski asked how many current students qualified for high math. Dr. Crisfield reported that before the new scores 20 students qualified. With the new scores additional students qualified and after waivers 9 of 58 students would not be in high math.
Mrs. Winter noted that the high level math students are separated for their other classes.
Mrs. Burman noted that 3 high level math classes existed in the past.
Dr Przybylski noted that the issue at Mt. Horeb needs to be addressed tonight and the other issues need to be settled in the future. He noted that there could be very adverse effects of having one class with 9 students.
Dr. Crisfield noted that the district must create a mainstream environment for students and a math class of 9 students is not acceptable.
Mrs. Burman asked if all 3 sections could be treated as high level and have an extra help teacher in the class.
Dr. Crisfield noted that all 5th grade math classes use the same book and the same curriculum. Depending on the students the various high level math classes learn at different levels and may complete more chapters than the other high level classes.
Mrs. Burman noted that she doesn't feel the districts' plan will not work. She proposed the following motion:
"Administration should be consistent in their grouping of the Mt. Horeb 5th grade math students and use the same parameters that are used in the other 3 elementary schools for 2009/2010 and that waiving into class should be considered."
The board discussed the potential issues with the motion and it was noted that without criteria for waivers the plan will not work.
Mr. Ricci asked if adjustments to the waiving criteria could create legal issues.
Mrs. Burman presented the option that the district have a hard cut-off and create 3 math sections. High, Middle and Heterogeneous math and there be no waiving.
Mrs. Winter noted that the teachers should be able to do their job and assign additional work to the students that need to be challenged.
Mrs. Spiller noted that the sole criteria cannot be the NJASK scores and the criteria for the future needs to be settled.
X. PUBLIC COMMENTARY (including opportunity to speak about items for Board Consideration/Action)
Note on public input at BOE meetings: Board Policy #9322, adopted on April 14, 2008, provides for and encourages public participation in Board of Education meetings. Such participation is governed by the following rules:
1. A participant must be recognized by the presiding officer and must preface comments by an announcement of his/her name and place of residence;
2. Each Statement made by a participant shall be limited to three minutes' duration (limit may be adjusted at the discretion of the presiding officer as circumstances dictate);
3. No participant may speak more than once on the same topic until all others who wish to speak on that topic have been heard; and
4. All Statements shall be directed to the presiding officer-no participant may address or question Board members individually.
The portion of the meeting during which participation of the public is invited shall be limited to fifteen minutes (limit may be adjusted at the discretion of the presiding officer as circumstances dictate).
Wen Sun Tang, 3 Deerwood Trail, believes that the math situation has been created since there was difficulty in balancing the 3 sections of math.
Karen Stromswold, 7 Cardinal Drive indicated the Ms. Pillar currently doesn't have 3 hours a day and the math skills to assist the class. The current high level students are bored and are not being challenged.
Jian Sheng Wan, 1 Softwood Way, feels that a class size of 9 would be a benefit and the students will get more individual attention. She feels that students that are waived in shouldn't slow down the high level students.
Larry Conway, 18 Downington Ct., is concerned that the actions proposed will not correct the problem. He agrees that waiving is not a solution. He likes the splitting of the current class as a board member suggested.
Susanne Di Sturco, 43 Briarwood Drive East, feels that waiving is correct and students need to be challenged. There should be criteria for waiving.
Nora Morrison, 72 Briarwood Drive East, feels that the current issue is how well their students will be prepared for middle school math and ultimately high school math.
Rebecca Rucker, 5 Fawn Lane, is concerned about how a broad range of students in the same class will be challenged.
Joan Lin, 57 Briarwood Drive East, doesn't feel the responsibility of dealing with 3 levels of students in the same class is fair to the teacher. She agrees with the concept of having criteria to qualify for high level math.
Jean DiGrande, 10 Orchard Way, believes that waiving should only happen after 4 weeks into the school year.
Jiang Li Lee, 118 Briar Wood Drive West, feels that 3 different math levels will be best for the students and challenge them.
Gail Pester, 2 Cardinal Drive, agrees that waiving should be done after a few weeks to evaluate if the student can do the work. She feels that the 3 levels of math would work.
Min Tang, 3 Deerwood Trail, feels that different reasons were give by Dr. Crisfield about the math class changes and the proposed changes are just an experiment with the students.
Donna Ringel, 6 Timber Ridge Drive, feels that the students need to be challenged. Teaching should be at a high level and lower level students need to keep up.
Jay Wilpon, 75 Round Top Rd., noted that if 35% of the students can waive in there is a system flaw. The parents need to trust the system and the administrators' recommendations. Students need to be placed at an appropriate level to remain challenged and interested in the subject.
Patricia Zohn, 157 Mountain View Rd., noted that the Mt. Horeb NJASK scores are terrific and the same teacher plans should be applied to all the schools. She feels that there is a small sub set of students that should be in the high level class environment.
This concluded the public commentary on math class.
Mrs. Monahan noted that Dr. Crisfield and the administrators will be discussing 4th grade math to determine what is appropriate for next year's 5th grade math.
Dr. Crisfield noted that a reporting metric will be created. Information about the math levels at middle school will be made available to the parents. There are different criteria for waiving in 5th grade in comparison to middle school.
Mrs. Monahan noted that the Mt. Horeb decisions were administrative changes and the board can direct Dr. Crisfield to make changes to the current class structure.
Mrs. Winter doesn't approve of the guarantee of all 5th graders to high math in middle school and the gifted and talented teacher must be capable in math.
Dr Przybylski summarized the plan and feels there should be no waivers and a math 2 class, a math 1.5 class and a math 1 class taught at the same level and the 4 ranking criteria used for separation.
The board discussed Dr Przybylski proposal.
Dr. Crisfield noted that the entire administration team doesn't feel the students can be segregated into 3 sections.
The board discussed Dr Przybylski's proposal and what should be done to address the issue.
Mrs. Burman proposed the following motion:
Resolved that board, pending legal approval, directs the superintendent to create
A math - high level class
A math - mid level class
A math - regular level class
for the 5th grade at Mt. Horeb School. This class will be taught using the same curriculum and placement will be decided by a four level ranking criteria and there will be no waivers.
The motion was seconded by Mrs. Toubin.
The board discussed the pros and cons of the motion.
A motion was called for a vote and was approved on an 8-1 roll call vote. (Mrs. Winter voted no.)
The motion as stated was voted on and failed on a 4-5 roll call vote. (Mrs. Monahan, Mrs. Spiller, Mr. Ricci, Mrs. Voorhees, and Mrs. Winter voted no.)
Additional Public Commentary
Jay Wilpon asked about the regionalization topic and the 11/19/09 meeting.
XI. ITEMS FOR BOARD CONSIDERATION/ACTION
Prior to voting, Mr. Daquila noted a correction to C4
Mrs. Burman asked a question about agenda item B.1. and asked for wording changes to C.10 and C.11.
On motion by Mrs. Spiller, seconded by Mrs. Toubin, the amended consent agenda was approved by unanimous 9-0 roll-call vote.
A.1. Violence and Vandalism Report (Attachment 1)
RESOLVED, that the Board of Education approves the Violence and Vandalism Report for the 2008-2009 school year dated July 7, 2009.
A.2. In Home Supported Instruction
RESOLVED, that the Board of Education approves one student (ID#0120573) to receive two hours of in-home instruction three times per week, effective September 30, 2009 through June 30, 2010. The cost to the district will be $9,600.
B.1. Transportation for Out of District Students
RESOLVED, that the Board of Education approves the transportation for out of district students with the Somerset Educational Services Commission for the 2009/2010 school year as follows:
Arc Kohler School
Total for SCESC
B.2. Transportation Contracts - Host District
RESOLVED, the Board of Education approves the transportation contract with WHRHS for the transportation of 13 Warren Township non-public school students to The Pingry School for the 2009-2010 school year as follows (funds for this service are provided by the State):
Contractor District School Fee
WHRHS Warren Pingry $11,492
B.3. Transportation Contracts - Other Districts
RESOLVED, the Board of Education approves the transportation contracts with other districts for the receipt of funds for transporting Out of District Students for the 2009-2010 school year as follows:
Contractor District Route School Fee
Warren Green Brook W-143 St. Vincent dePaul-Stirling $5,304
B.4. Transfer from Capital Reserve to Fund 30 Mt. Horeb Tile Abatement and Floor Tile Replacement DOE Project: 5470-035-09-1003
RESOLVED, the Board of Education approves the transfer of $205,965 from Capital Reserve to Fund 30 for the district share of the costs for the Mt. Horeb Tile Abatement and Floor Replacement Project. This project was approved in the 2009/2010 budget.
B.5. Donation -Watchung Hills Soccer Association (WHSA)
RESOLVED, the Board of Education accepts, with appreciation, the donation from the WHSA of the application of top soil and grass seed to the "bare" spots on the Middle School Soccer field. The estimated value of this service is $4,000.00 and the WHSA will hire and pay the vendor.
C. Personnel/Student Services
C.1. Amend Family Leave Request Return Date
RESOLVED, that the Board of Education amends the family leave request return date for Marianne Larson from February 16, 2010 to February 11, 2010.
C.2. Family Leave Request
RESOLVED, that the Board of Education approves the family leave request for the following:
a) Joan Toth, Special Education Teacher, Woodland School, (unpaid with benefits), from January 4, 2010 through April 8, 2010 and child rearing leave (unpaid without benefits) from April 9, 2010 through June 30, 2010. Returning September 1, 2010.
b) Lisa Lenci, Grade 1 Teacher, Woodland School, (unpaid with benefits), from May 6, 2010 through June 30, 2010. Returning September 1, 2010.
C.3. Middle School Play Staff and Stipends
RESOLVED, the Board of Education approves the following staff and stipends in support of the 2009-2010 Middle School play as follows:
- Musical Director - Diane McCloskey $2,640
- Stage and Sound Director - Joel VanTine $1,430
- Business Manager - Bev MacGorman $1,430
- Set Design and Building - Doug MacGorman $1,430
- Choreographer - Jill Zimmerman $1,430
- Assistant to the Director - Kathy Lazas $1,430
C.4. 2009-2010 Fall Sport Coaches Amended
RESOLVED, the Board of Education approves the appointment of the following Fall sport coaches for the 2009-2010 school year:
a) Sean Mealey - girls soccer at a stipend of $2,900.
b) Kurt Reck - boys soccer at a stipend of $2,900.
c) Nicholas Bayachek - cross country at a stipend of $2,200.
C.5. Substitute Teachers
RESOLVED, that the Board of Education approves the following Substitute Teachers for the 2009-2010 school year:
a) Lauren Fischer
b) Meghan Nadeau (previous 08-09 sub)
c) Brian Kraminitz
C.6. Per Diem Deduct Request
RESOLVED, that the Board of Education approves the following per diem deduct request for the following:
a) Silvia Gebala, Multi-duty Paraprofessional, Mt. Horeb School, for 6½ days, September 25, 29, 30, 2009 and October 1, 2, 5, 6, 2009.
C.7. After School Club - 2009-2010 School Year
RESOLVED, that the Board of Education approves the following after school club for the 2009-2010 school year and the instructors for each club at the negotiated stipend rate.
a) Girls On The Run - advisor Megan Harvey at a stipend of $715.
Mt. Horeb School
a) School Spirit Club - advisors Kelly Maire and Michele Stora deCruz at a stipend of 357.50 each.
a) Board Games Club - advisor Christina Beekman at a stipend of $715.
a) Art Decorations - advisor Sandella Marmorato at a stipend of $715.
b) Backstage Club - advisor Joel VanTine at a stipend of $1,430.
c) Flag Football, advisor Deb Granrath at a stipend of $715.
e) Flower Childs Arts & Crafts - advisor Bernadette Gibson at a stipend of $715.
f) Games of Strategy - advisor Gladys Veitch at a stipend of $1,430.
g) Golf - advisor Robert Hartshorn at a stipend of $715.
h) Homework Help Club - advisors Josephine Brasile, Robin Savage, and Laura Sudol at a stipend of $1,430 each.
i) Homework Help Club - advisor Dan Ticchio at a stipend of $715.
j) Honor Band - advisor Diane McCloskey at a stipend of $715.
k) Jazz Band - advisor Joel VanTine at a stipend of $1,430.
l) Knit-A-Bit - advisors Lisa Seccamanie and Gladys Veitch at a stipend of $1,430 each.
m) Lego Robotics - advisors Susan Cooper and Sean Convery at a stipend of $715 each.
n) Marching Band - advisor Diane McCloskey at a stipend of $715.
o) Math Club - advisor Susan Cooper at a stipend of $715.
p) Peer Leaders - advisors Lynn Degan and Susan Cooper at a stipend of $1,430 each.
q) Ping Pong - advisor Deb Granrath at a stipend of $715.
r) Rebel 2 - advisor Vivien Plesmid at a stipend of $1,430.
s) SGA - advisor Bev MacGorman at a stipend of $1,430.
t) Sim City - advisor Steve Verger at a stipend of $1,430.
u) Social Skills Games - advisor Josephine Brasile at a stipend of $1,430.
v) Solar Car Club - advisor Susan Cooper and Ernie Monaco at a stipend of $715 each.
w) Talent Show - advisor Joel VanTine at a stipend of $715.
x) Techno Wizards - advisor Sean Convery at a stipend of $1,430.
y) Ultimate Frisbee - advisor Deb Granrath at a stipend of $715.
z) Voice Club - advisor Diane McCloskey at a stipend of $715.
aa) Volleyball Club - advisor Amanda Rodrigues at a stipend of $715.
bb) Yearbook - advisors Sean Convery and Bev MacGorman at a stipend of $1,430 each.
cc) Buddy to Buddy - advisors Midge Johnson at a stipend of $1,430 and Faye Brady at a stipend of $715 (until December 31, 2009).
C.8. Out of District Evaluator
RESOLVED, that the Board of Education approves Joan Bruno, TECH connection at Family Resources Associates to conduct an assistive technology evaluation for one student (ID#0000629). The cost to the district will be $668.
C.9. Amendment on Salary Guide
RESOLVED, that the Board of Education approves the following amended placement on the teachers' negotiated salary guide:
a) Hildy Jackson, Central School, MA+15 to MA+45 (remaining at step 9-10), effective September 1, 2009.
C.10. 1:1 Paraprofessional Services Amended
RESOLVED, that the Board of Education approves the following 1:1 paraprofessional services for the 2009-2010 school year:
a) One student (ID#0120453) for one hour per week while attending an after School Club at Middle School. Stacey Papalitskas will be the aide at an hourly rate of $19.60. The cost to the district will be $705.60 (full year club).
b) One student (ID#0120833) for one hour per week while attending an after school Club at Woodland School. Kathy Pantalone will be the aide at an hourly rate of $21.89. The cost to the district will be $328 (1/2 year club).
c) One student (ID#0000031) for one hour per week while attending an after school club. Valerie Nelson will be the aide at an hourly rate of $19.04. The cost to the district will be $575.00 (full year club)
d) One student (ID# 0120485) for one hour per week while attending an after school club. Anthony Gagliano will be the aide at an hourly rate of $15.34. The cost to the district will be $460.50 (full year club).
C.11. Appointment of Employee as Energy Monitor for Energy Education Program
RESOLVED, the Board of Education approves the appointment of Hildy Jackson as the Energy Monitor for the Energy Education Inc. Program for the period of October 16, 2009 to June 30, 2010. Ms. Jackson will receive an annual stipend of $18,500.00, prorated for this position.
XII. OLD BUSINESS
Mr. Daquila brought up the issue of a board member attending the School Boards convention at the end of October. The board decided to reimburse the BOE member. The district will track the training requirements for all board members.
Mrs. Burman wanted to verify that the superintendent and board will receive an updates on the status of the 5th grade math.
XIII. NEW BUSINESS
XIV. PUBLIC COMMENTARY
XV. EXECUTIVE SESSION:
At 10:15 p.m. Mrs. Voorhees moved the following:
WHEREAS, the Open Public Meetings Act, N.J.S.A.10:4-11, permits the Board of Education to meet in closed session to discuss certain matters, now, therefore be it
RESOLVED, the Board of Education adjourns to closed session to discuss:
matter rendered confidential by federal or State law
pending or anticipated litigation or contract negotiation and/or matters of attorney-client privilege
a matter in which release of information would impair the right to receive government funds
material the disclosure of which constitutes an unwarranted invasion of individual privacy
a collective bargaining agreement and/or negotiations related to it
a matter involving the purchase, lease, or acquisition of real property with public funds
protection of public safety and property and/or investigations of possible violations or violations of law
specific prospective or current employees unless all who could be adversely affected request an open session
deliberation after a public hearing that could result in a civil penalty or other loss
and be it
FURTHER RESOLVED, the minutes of this closed session be made public when the need for confidentiality no longer exists.
The motion was seconded by Mrs. Toubin and approved by unanimous voice vote.
On motion by Mrs. Spiller, seconded by Dr Przybylski, the board reconvened in open session at 10:56 p.m.
XVI. ADJOURNMENT: On motion by Mrs. Spiller, seconded by Dr Przybylski, the meeting adjourned at 10:58 p.m.
Minutes recorded by:
Last modified on Thursday, February 24, 2022