In a recent Oradell School Board meeting, a lively celebration of local students’ achievements in the ‘Odyssey of the Mind’ competition took center stage, coupled with the discussion of notable school facility upgrades and upcoming events.
Odyssey of the Mind is a program focused on fostering creativity and problem-solving skills. In this program, teams are tasked with finding a solution to a predetermined, long-term challenge over the course of several months, after which they showcase their solutions in a competition setting.
Oradell’s Odyssey of the Mind’s Division One team, as reported by the program’s coordinator, Ms. Sham, had advanced to the State finals, demonstrating immense growth and creativity along the way. “We fail forward…both teams many times and are okay with what we accomplished because we learned a lot,” Ms. Sham praised the team, extolling their inventive spirit. The Division Two team, having won the state championship, participated in the World Finals at Michigan State University, placing 18th out of 65 teams – a remarkable feat celebrated by the entire school board.
At the meeting, the Division One team shared their experience in crafting a pirate-themed narrative, featuring costumes made from recycled materials and an original pirate song. Their report shone a spotlight on their innovative process and impressive problem-solving skills, a testament to their perseverance and resourcefulness.
Discussion also centered on the school’s facility updates and future construction projects, ranging from improvements to the HVAC system to refurbishments planned for the auditorium and the library.
On a lighter note, the school board humorously remarked on the unexpected popularity of a lollipop sale fundraiser, which necessitated a second batch of lollipops due to high demand. This anecdote, along with the upcoming “Great Day at Oradell Public School,” where students will participate in various activities promoting the theme of perseverance, highlighted the engaging and inclusive spirit of the school community.
In a tribute to continuity and dedicated service, the meeting also acknowledged milestones for two of its members, Dorothy Nichols and Gregory Darian, who had served on the board for 15 and 10 years, respectively. The two were awarded by the New Jersey School Boards Association.