Kearny School Board Addresses School Security, Academic Curriculum, and Parent Engagement

In an eventful Kearny School Board meeting, conversations centered around topics such as school security concerns, the development and accessibility of academic curricula, and the reinforcement of parent engagement programs. Notably, the board discussed the current state of security at Franklin School, the possibility of amending the health curriculum, and the expansion plans for the Pre-K program.

One of the foremost concerns discussed was the issue of school security at Franklin School. This issue was brought to the fore by Jennifer Campos, an observer at the meeting, who expressed concerns about the lack of a retired or current police officer on school grounds. Responding to these concerns, the board acknowledged the importance of school security and noted that a retired police officer is already employed at the school, assuring the attendees that student safety remains their priority.

Among the academic matters discussed, the health curriculum received particular attention. A parent questioned the board about the current health curriculum and the process for proposing changes or amendments to it. The board explained that while their curriculum is based on state standards, they do provide an option for parents to opt out if they have concerns about specific topics. The board agreed to provide the concerned parent with a copy of the curriculum for review and further discussion.

The Kearny School Board also tackled the topic of parent engagement, particularly in the context of the Pre-K program. Dr. Adeline Boyd, a member of the board, presented the Curriculand Instruction report, revealing plans for the expansion of the Pre-K program and enrichment of family engagement. This initiative was positively received by other board members who agreed to explore options for after-school parent engagement activities, highlighting the board’s commitment to fostering a supportive and inclusive school community.

The board meeting also saw discussions about the school’s financial matters. A community member raised a question about the school board’s funding, mentioning rumors about the board receiving $68 million from the state. The board, led by Jose A. Soares, clarified that they were not privy to any such funding and that their budget is determined annually through a tax levy. They offered to share additional information regarding the mentioned funding, underlining the board’s commitment to accurate and transparent financial operations.

Finally, Superintendent Patricia Blood acknowledged the heroics of a student, Bruno Rera, who had helped an elderly couple, presenting him with a certificate of recognition.

Note: This meeting summary was generated by AI, which can occasionally misspell names, misattribute actions, and state inaccuracies. This summary is intended to be a starting point and you should review the meeting record linked above before acting on anything you read. If we got something wrong, let us know. We’re working every day to improve our process in pursuit of universal local government transparency.

Superintendent:
Patricia Blood
School Board Officials:
Dr. Adeline Boyd, Elizabeth A. Burke, Cecilia Lindenfelser (Vice President), John J. McKenna, Samantha Paris (President), Laura Pettigrew, Jose A. Soares, Mary Torres, Sebastian J. Viscuso

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