In a meeting that addressed a gamut of issues from educational goals to infrastructure, the Bergenfield School Board approved a series of significant measures aimed at enhancing student learning experiences and school facilities. The meeting, held on July 31, 2023, was presided over by Board President Joseph Amara and saw unanimous votes for multiple proposals, ranging from staff development to sizable expenditures on technology and building upgrades.
While the board approved goals for the 2023/2024 academic year, including academic achievements, diversity, and inclusion, some of the most immediate actions were financial allocations toward technology and infrastructure. Among these was a $46,500 hot water heater replacement at Bergenfield High School and an $8,625 kiln replacement at Washington Elementary School. Moreover, a range of technology-related contracts were approved, including a $10,270.52 contract for school bus security cameras and an $18,093 subscription for Google Workspace for Education Plus.
The board also gave its nod to several professional development programs for teachers and administrators, covering subjects like Expository Writing Instruction, Assistive Technology Tools for Reading and Dyslexia, and various other pedagogical themes. These training sessions are to be held between August and September 2023, funded through Title IA Non-Public Funds and Title II Funds. The cost for these programs varies, going up to $2,400 in some instances.
Simultaneously, the board authorized tuition and specialty contracts with entities such as South Bergen Jointure and Bergen County Special Services for the 2023/2024 academic year. The board also sanctioned a transportation contract naming Bergenfield as the Host District for the coming academic year. Among other fiscal actions, the board approved staff reimbursements for travel to conferences, varying between $11.38 and $225, and the transfer and appropriation of funds within the 2022-2023 and 2023-2024 budgets for specific projects.
Further showing its commitment to curricular and co-curricular development, the board accepted a new 8th Grade Elective Course Proposal named ELA Quest for Middle School students. A memorandum of understanding with Big Brothers Big Sisters for the 2023/2024 academic year was also established. On a related note, an out-of-state field trip for the Bergenfield High School Dance Team, consisting of 15 students and three chaperones, was approved for a date in February 2024.
The Bergenfield School Board took a step in expanding its staff by approving a new position called the Medical Careers Coordinator, along with its job description. This move could open up avenues for students interested in medical careers, aligning with the board’s goals for the next academic year.
Additionally, the board approved multiple service proposals, including painting services and floor replacements at various schools. Proposals for text and digital resources were also given a green light, with contracts awarded to CollegeBoard and McGraw Hill among others. In a move to rescind a previous decision, the board terminated a resolution with C. Dougherty and Co., Inc. for boiler cleaning services after the company failed to agree to the specified hourly rate.
The meeting concluded with the Business Administrator/Board Secretary reporting a balance of $14,256,168.29 as of June 30, 2023, in both the Secretary’s and Treasurer’s reports, which were unanimously approved.