On June 28, 2023, the Oakland School Board addressed a host of topics related to personnel changes, funding approvals, and operational upgrades for the upcoming academic year.
The meeting began with a warm recognition of Ms. Arlene Ishak, a retiring staff member. Later, the board discussed several staffing changes, from teacher appointments to role reassignments. A new District School Psychologist, a Guidance Counselor at Heights Elementary School, and multiple Elementary Teachers were appointed, highlighting the board’s dedication to supporting students’ academic and emotional needs. A significant change was confirmed as Mallory Fuentes transitioned from a Special Education Teacher to a Kindergarten Teacher at Dogwood Hill Elementary School, effective September 1, 2023.
Financial matters were also discussed, including the approval of the May 2023 certified gross payroll totaling $1,846,070.59 and bill payments amounting to $8,374,963.38. Additionally, the board approved a transfer of up to $4,800,000 into various reserve funds.
In terms of special education, the board approved several contracts and agreements to enhance services for students. Occupational, physical, and speech therapy services were confirmed at a rate of $110.00 per hour, and contracts with external service providers like Bergen County Special Services and Delta-T North Jersey, Inc. were ratified.
The board approved contract renewals for Annette Wells, Business Administrator/Board Secretary, and Abdulaziz Jello, a 0.5 Custodian/0.5 Bus Driver. The Oakland Administrators’ Association and the Oakland Education Association also successfully negotiated collective agreements, illustrating the healthy relationship between the board and employees.
Among other matters, the board approved various infrastructure projects such as wall padding installation, clock system upgrades, and security camera installation, all aimed at enhancing the learning environment and security of the schools.