Harrington Park School Board Outlines Staffing Changes, Approves Shared Services Agreement

In a meeting held at the Community Church Founders Hall on June 15, the Harrington Park School Board announced several staffing changes for the 2023-24 school year, approved an Annual Shared Services Agreement for CDL Bus Drivers with the Northern Valley Regional High School Board, and set compensation rates for the Spartan Summer Escape Enrichment Program. The meeting was presided over by Board President Peter Toomin and attended by Board Vice President Matthew Lehmann, Trustees Brenda Cho, Stephen Hahm, and Tommy Perides, Acting Superintendent Jessica Nitzberg, and Business Administrator/Board Secretary Bryan Jursca.

Nitzberg announced that she will resume her role as Principal, stepping down from her position as Acting Superintendent. Her announcement came as she reported on the final weeks of the school year, which included musical events, awards ceremonies, and graduations. She was also issued a Principal contract for the upcoming school year.

Alongside Nitzberg, several other administrative and personnel decisions were ratified. Ross Herbert will serve as the Assistant Principal/Supervisor of Pupil Personnel for 2023-24, Celeste Bonura as the Director of Special Programs, and Bryan Jursca will continue as Business Administrator. The board approved various other contracts, including those for Financial Clerk Marcelino Lapid, Confidential Administrative Assistant Kathy Leon, and part-time Director of House & Grounds Kevin Menaldo. A series of retirements and resignations were approved, including that of Kathy Leon, who will retire on September 30, 2023.

Beyond staffing, the board finalized an Annual Shared Services Agreement for CDL Bus Drivers with the Northern Valley Regional High School Board for the 2023-24 academic year. The board also approved a third-year agreement with the YWCA of Northern New Jersey to provide Before and After Care programs, effective from August 2023 through June 2024.

As part of its focus on student programs, the board approved the staffing and compensation structure for the Spartan Summer Escape Enrichment Program, slated to run from July 31 to August 18, 2023. Compensation for participating employees will range from $15 to $40 per hour depending on their role. Additional volunteers will also contribute to the program, pending paperwork approval.

Significantly, an updated Safe Return Plan for the 2023-24 school year was passed in compliance with the American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund. The board authorized expenditures totaling over $1 million for various purposes and certified that no account or fund had been over-expended.

A transfer of a current year surplus not exceeding $250,000 to a Reserve Capital fund was greenlit, along with allocating an anticipated 2022-23 State Extraordinary Aid of $150,000 to a special education transportation account. The board also gave its consent to participate in the PEPPM National Purchasing Cooperative for the 2023-24 academic year.

Facilities-related approvals were passed, including the use of alternate toilet room facilities for a kindergarten classroom and the renewal application for temporary instructional spaces. No public comments were received, and the meeting was adjourned at 6:17 p.m.

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