September 3, 2013 at 6:55 AM
LIVINGSTON, NJ – As approximately 5,840 students in Livingston Township return to school, the district has a new superintendent, Doctor John Alfieri.
Alfieri stated that he wants the community to know that he is ready “to listen, to learn, to observe, and to be a part of the educational process.”
“I’m not coming in here with preconceived notions about what I want to change. Livingston is not broken, it’s a terrific district, and I want to become an active participant in the community in terms of education,” he said.
Alfieri says part of his job will entail incorporating requirements by the state of New Jersey into Livingston schools.
“We have to follow a lot of new guidelines, and we want to make sure we do the right thing in terms of following the code,” he stated.
According to Alfieri, that means, “making sure observations are there to help people grow, and we want to make sure our administrators are there to really coach teachers.”
Additionally, separate to state requirements, Alfieri wants to take what he calls a “comprehensive look” at the mathematics programs in Livingston Public Schools.
“Our scores are very good” he stated, but also added that he’d like to take a look at the mathematics programming the Livingston Public Schools were using – or not using.
Alfieri also says that he will get to know the Livingston Township community.
“I’m meeting with all the stakeholder groups, retired teachers, principals, assistant principals, some current staff. I want to start, once the school year kicks in, to meet with parents, students, and different organizations to really get a full feel for the community” he said.
Alfieri also had a message for both parents, and their kids.
“My message to parents is that, I want to partner with them to provide their children with the best possible learning opportunities, and I want to hear from them, and I want them to know that if there is a concern that they have, or suggestion to please share it” he said.
As for the students, he stated that, “I’m very proud of their (Livingston Township Students) accomplishments to date, and I would like them to work as hard as they have been, because our district is as good as it is because of our students and teachers. We want to begin to offer even more challenges, especially at the elementary level looking at research skills, looking at our language arts curriculum, and seeing if it’s meeting the need of the 21st century and the new common core state standards.”
Alfieri encouraged the Livingston Township community to become involved in the school system.
“The Livingston Public Schools exist for its students, and everything we do is for the kids. This is not something we do alone, we need their (the community’s) input, we need their support, we need their assistance, and we need their cooperation. We have a great professional staff from top to bottom. I’ve been impressed with everyone I’ve met with. I just want to invite them (the community) to become truly involved as partners.”
Before being appointed as Livingston’s Superintendent, Alfieri was an elementary school and math teacher in Morris County, a principal in both West Orange and Millburn, and a superintendent in a Sussex County school district for six years.
According to a spokesperson for the Livingston Public Schools, in addition to having a new superintendent, Livingston Township also has forty new staff members consisting of certified teachers, educational support staff members, supervisors, assistant principals, and a new principal at Hillside Elementary School.