A recent Glen Rock School Board meeting celebrated a significant rise in graduation readiness among 11th-grade students. However, the jubilation was punctuated with concerns over perceived educational shifts and the state of school facilities.
Unveiling new strategies to aid students with Individualized Education Programs (IEPs), the board highlighted initiatives like professional development for high school teachers and aligning courses with state benchmarks. One attendee articulated the district’s intent, noting, “we’re looking at those state standards and ensuring that everyone is working towards those.”
Amid the academic discussions, concerns regarding mold found in the High School Middle School auditorium were also broached. The mold was attributed to humidity complications and an HVAC system glitch. Fortunately, after taking remedial measures, no airborne mold was detected, clearing the auditorium for reopening within the week.
Policy updates were another focal point, as attendees learned of Governor Murphy’s broadened sick leave policy. The new stance gives certified staff more flexibility, allowing for sick days to be used for reasons such as attending child conferences or tending to ailing family members. In addition, the board introduced the threat assessment team’s purpose, emphasizing its role in early identification and intervention for students perceived as at risk.
During a public comment segment, resident Carol Garofalo vocalized her concerns over what she alleged were curriculum changes fostering “early sexualization of the children” and heightened “racial division.” Garofalo, opined that the New Jersey Board of Education’s proposed curriculum alterations — such as eliminating gendered nouns — undermined scientific truths and parental rights, potentially infringing upon constitutional liberties. She vehemently argued for a return to traditional Judeo-Christian values, proclaiming, “all are born either male or female which are the only two sexes and for the judeo-christian principles upon which our country was founded.”
However, advocates of the curriculum argue that such revisions aim to foster inclusivity and understanding among students, countering biases and ensuring a more holistic and accurate representation of today’s diverse society. They believe that modernizing educational materials can better equip students to navigate and thrive in an ever-evolving world.
In other discussions, the board recognized new hires while bidding farewell to retiring educators. Miss Caffrey’s retirement was particularly poignant, with board members like Miss Stevenson reflecting on the educators’ long-standing commitment to the district.