Rochelle Park School Board Bolsters Security and Curriculum Revisions

In a recent Rochelle Park Board of Education meeting held on August 29, 2023, significant discussions revolved around preparations for the 2023-2024 academic year, policy updates, and key personnel changes.

Dr. Sue DeNobile, Superintendent of Schools, acknowledged the preparations for the new school year, presenting a welcome sign displaying the 22 languages spoken by students in the district. She recognized the hard work of staff members, particularly custodians, over the summer months and expressed gratitude to the PTO for their contributions. Dr. DeNobile also highlighted the forthcoming professional development day for faculty.

The board’s committees provided updates on various fronts. Scott Kral spoke about the condition of school grounds and requested that residents not use skateboards or bicycles on the new basketball courts. Teresa Judge Cravello highlighted upcoming policy changes, emphasizing the need for their swift implementation. Meanwhile, Jorge Martinez Jr. promoted a convention and alluded to a collaboration with local police to enhance school security for the forthcoming school year.

Dr. Riley, the Business Administrator, noted a received variance for an adjacent lot. Additionally, the Director of Curriculum & Instruction, Mrs. Cara Hurd, provided insights on the ACCESS Assessment results and the ongoing professional development for teachers. Dr. Courtney Carmichael, the Principal of Midland School, spoke on the value of a strong relationship between home and school and introduced the concept of a parent advisory board for the school year. Mrs. Garcia, Director of Special Services, updated attendees on the Extended School Year Program and mentioned additional school funding.

The public comment section brought forth various concerns from the community. Among these were requests for flexible meeting times for the parent advisory committee, enhanced professional development for science teachers, the need for a school resource officer, and provisions for gifted students.

In addition to these discussions, several resolutions were unanimously approved by the board. These covered topics ranging from curriculum changes, field trips, professional development training, to special education provisions for the 2023-2024 school year. Notable among them was the approval of an 8th Grade trip to Washington DC, set from June 5-7, 2024. The Board also greenlit several curricular revisions, including updates in subjects like arts, music, STEM, and more. Furthermore, an Interlocal Agreement was sanctioned to station a Special Law Enforcement Officer Class III at the Midland School.

A range of personnel decisions were made, including the appointment of Courtney Carmichael as Principal of Midland School and the confirmation of Dr. Sue DeNobile’s contract as Superintendent of Schools from July 1, 2023, to June 30, 2028.

The Board’s next meeting is scheduled for September 26, 2023, and will again commence with an Executive Session before the regular session.

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