Sunday, May 19, 2013
Some South Orange - Maplewood students will have a long Memorial Day weekend -- others won't.
This article originally ran in April. There has been some confusion about which schools in the South Orange - Maplewood School District (SOMSD) are closed for the days surrounding Memorial Day weekend. Here's the scoop, according to a district spokesperson: All district schools will be closed Monday, May 27 for the Memorial Day holiday. Any school that still has two emergency closing days available (that were not used because of inclement weather) as of May 23 will be closed Friday, May 24 and Tuesday, May 28, and any school that still has one emergency closing day available will be closed Friday, May 24 but open Tuesday, May 28. Schools with no emergency closing days available will be open on both May 24 and May 28. Still confused? …
Wednesday, March 6, 2013
Annual exams, such as NJASK, will be longer, focus more on student needs.
State officials announced Tuesday that beginning in the 2014-15 school year, students in New Jersey schools will spend roughly three more hours per year undergoing annual tests than current testing requires, according to a published report. The new online tests, officials said, will help teachers better understand students’ needs, a Wednesday NorthJersey.com report said. However not all educators and parents are convinced of the effectiveness of the test, saying the new tests will drain more instructional time and increase pressure to “teach to the test,” especially at a time when teachers’ evaluations will be linked in part to their students’ progress on tests, the report said. A 22-state, federally funded consortium known as the …
Monday, February 25, 2013
Districts across New Jersey await state aid figures this week with uncertainty.
South Orange - Maplewood Schools face the deadline to submit the 2013-2014 budget to the county next week with uncertainty as to whether $85 billion in federal "sequestration" spending cuts will be stopped by Congress before Friday. The district will learn its state aid figures this week after Gov. Chris Christie delivers his fiscal year 2014 budget address Tuesday afternoon. At Monday night's meeting of the Board of Education, board member Bill Gaudelli asked the administration what they were expecting. Business Administrator Cheryl Schneider said the district was anticipating a 25% cut in federal funding as a result of the sequestration "and that's what we have budgeted for." The release of the state aid figures triggers a sequence of …
Friday, February 22, 2013
Administration presented cuts on Wednesday as a way to plug a $2.8 million shortfall.
(Editor's note: figures for the estimated tax impact of proposed budget on residents have been corrected with updated numbers). The South Orange - Maplewood School District has proposed cutting 19 full time positions and slashing the technology "wish list" to plug an estimated $2.8 million gap in the 2013-14 budget year. Business Administrator Cheryl Schneider presented the proposal to the members of the Board of Education in a special workshop Wednesday night. The document is available on the district's website and can be seen here. The proposal would add $475,000 of the district's banked cap -- saved from other years when the board has not used it -- to the operating budget. The resulting tax impact, including debt service, would be 2.…
Tuesday, January 22, 2013
A recap of recent issues and discussions, ahead of next week's BOE meeting.
It's a busy time in the South Orange-Maplewood School District, as the Board of Education (BOE) is in the thick of budget discussions for the 2013-14 school year. The board has been discussing the upcoming budget since the beginning of this school year. The next board meeting is on Monday, Jan. 28 at 7:30 p.m. (in the District Meeting Room at 525 Academy St.) If you'd like to get up to speed before then, here is a brief summary of what's going on in the district: State of the District Superintendent Brian Osborne recently gave his annual State of the District address; for more information click here. International Baccalaureate/Middle Years Program The district is currently training teachers and staff in anticipation of launching the IB/…
Thursday, December 20, 2012
South Orange-Maplewood School District administrators discuss emergency management in light of Newtown shootings.
Administrators from the South Orange-Maplewood School District (SOMSD) are reviewing safety and emergency policies in response to last week's shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., in which 20 children and six adults were killed. According to a statement issued by the district, SOMSD will reassess its emergency management procedures and, in consultation with the South Orange and Maplewood Police departments, adjust the district's existing plans if necessary. Currently, school doors are kept locked and security cameras monitor visitors, who must buzz to be allowed in. All visitors must report first to the main office. (The SOMSD policy handbook can be found on the district's website. Relevant sections include Policy …
Monday, November 26, 2012
What's on the agenda in town this week.
School is back in regular session in South Orange - Maplewood this week. (Also, the district recently announced a new calendar for the current school year.) The Capital Plan Community Forum that was rescheduled to November 27 has been cancelled. According to district representatives, it will take place sometime in the spring. Here are some other events taking place in town this week: The Maplewood Library Community Forum is on Tuesday at 7 pm at the Maplewood Memorial Library, 51 Baker St. The community is invited to participate in Maplewood Library's strategic planning process. Please RSVP to Sarah Lester at 973-762-1622 ext. 5004 or email@example.com The South Orange/Maplewood Chapter of Mothers & More will host its annual …
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Brian Osborne writes to the community in the wake of Sandy.
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
The following was sent by the South Orange - Maplewood School District on Nov. 12: To the South Orange Maplewood School Community: On behalf of the South Orange Maplewood School District, I express heartfelt gratitude for the extraordinary efforts of our students, staff, families, municipal officials, and entire community in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Even though many of us faced hardships of our own, and were struggling to recover from storm damage and power outages in our own homes, everyone still came together as a caring community to put our kids first. Five of our nine schools were able to open on Monday, and by Wednesday everyone was back in class, although three school buildings remained without power. The South Mountain Annex …
Monday, October 29, 2012
Message just sent out via phone call, email.
Monday, October 29, 2012
Updated: Schools and district offices closed Tuesday too. From the South Orange - Maplewood School District: South Orange Maplewood schools and offices will be closed on Monday, October 29 due to emergency weather conditions. All school and community activities in school buildings are canceled. In addition, district servers are being shut down as a precaution against equipment damage due to power surges. Emails sent to @somsd.k12.nj.us addresses during this time may be lost.
Saturday, October 27, 2012
South Orange - Maplewood School District issues statement about next week.
The following information is from Suzanne Turner, Director of Strategic Communications for the South Orange - Maplewood School District. Safety for our students and staff is always a top priority in our district. The superintendent makes the decision to close (or not close) schools after consulting with the district supervisor of buildings and grounds, the South Orange and Maplewood Police Departments, and other superintendents in the region. The district also follows any directives or guidance provided by the county office of emergency management. If the decision is a delayed opening or an all-day closing, then families and staff are contacted via SchoolMessenger, and announcements are made on the district website, district phone …