NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ – The Board of Education (BOE) discussed the district’s strategic planning and goals for the next five years as well as its mission statement at its Thursday, June 25 Zoom meeting.

Superintendent David Miceli noted that despite the lockdown the board has continued to work on its strategic planning goals. Miceli and Board Member Adam Smith explained that the district had a chance to meet with the community multiple times before the lockdown to exchange ideas. The internal research report has been shared with the board and the strategic planning committee. The internal research presentation will be provided to the community once the meetings resume normalcy, Miceli said.

The Strategic Planning Committee has met and came up with the list of strategic goals for the next five years, Smith explained. The list is a culmination of information gathered from the nine pre-covid public sessions with the community on a variety of topics. The administrative team has also met with various committees and staff who have put together their own thoughts for the next five years, he said.

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Smith explained that the district has come up with two optional mission statements. The board will have a chance to decide the final wording of the mission statement at the July meeting. The district motto is that the educational journey from Kindergarten to high school graduation is a marathon, not a sprint, he said.

Smith read the two mission statement drafts, which are as follows:

1. In partnership with parents, community, teachers and students the mission of New Providence School District is to prepare our students academically for their further pursuits, develop the appropriate social skills to interact with society, stimulate a growth mindset for continued lifetime improvement for productive global citizens and to help create a plan for our students’ futures.

2. In partnership with students, teachers, parents, and community the mission of the New Providence School District is to prepare our students academically for their pursuits, to develop appropriate social and emotional skills to be productive and empathetic global citizens and to stimulate a growth mindset for continued lifelong learning in a culturally diverse society.

The eight strategic goals for the next five years are as follows:

1. Enhance the districtwide communication programs, focusing on technological distribution of district information and continuing to enable improved engagement with the community.

2. Enhance elementary students programming for early student development and to offer more resources and experiences to enhance student achievement.

3. Enhance secondary programming to continue and enable student achievement while preparing students for career readiness and post high school academics.

4. Implement a robust social and emotional learning curriculum for the district.

5. Continue to monitor community housing development and proactively address the impact on the district from the facilities and instructional perspectives.

6. Enhance the district’s facilities to develop a modern learning environment considering collaboration, class size, grade configuration, and extracurricular activities.

7. Continue to develop an innovative, collaborative and modernized instructional framework focused on higher level thinking, real world problem solving, student autonomy, self-pacing and the development of student centered, learner-driven classroom environment.

8. Develop and implement data-driven decision-making for teachers, parents, and students enhancing student achievement K-12.

With regard to other news Miceli commended Confidential Executive Secretary Jean Feckanicz, who will be retiring as of Sept. 30. She has worked 34 years at the superintendent’s office. She has been “a tremendous asset” to the district and in addition to former longtime board member Ira Krauss has acted as “a historian.”

Board President Bernadette Cuccaro advised that the board received seven applications for the board vacancy left from Ira Krauss. The board is in the process of reviewing resumes and will interview the applicants at a public meeting in July.