June 6, 2014 at 6:35 AM
BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - The Berkeley Heights Board of Education not only deliberated over its own agenda, but also celebrated the successes of others at Thursday evening's meeting.
The Board of Education began the meeting by recognizing both students, for their achievements over the course of the school year, and members of the school system retiring across the district, for their achievements over the course of their careers.
In reference to the contributions of the retiring district servants over their careers, Superintendent Judith Rattner shared a quote of Winston Churchill: “We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.”
This year, 10 employees who have been a part of the school system for decades across a wide variety of subjects and services, are retiring. Retirees who attended the meeting to receive their recognition included Orville “Don” Behm (Woodruff music teacher), Andrew “Andy” Damato (Governor Livingston learning disabilities teacher-consultant), Susan Paskow (Columbia science teacher), Karen Pilkington (Hughes and Mountain Park art teacher), and Linda Scherba (Columbia Spanish teacher). In addition, Brant Benson (District Business Office assistant board secretary), Judith Buldo (Governor Livingston secretary), Robert Kreig (Governor Livingston head custodian), Elaine Sauler (Mountain Park cafeteria cook/manager), and Walter Wiatr (Governor Livingston industrial arts/technology teacher) will also be stepping down following the completion of the school year.
“A sincere thanks to all of the retirees for making a difference and best wishes for continued good health, happiness, and a time to explore new avenues of enjoyment,” Rattner said.
In continuing with the theme of recognition, the Board of Education also celebrated the Governor Livingston High School junior varsity softball team as 2014 Union County Champions. Board member Paul Beisser read the board’s proclamation before the team and their coaches, which will be displayed in the high school.
The Board of Education also presented outstanding students with fifteen different awards from a variety of distributors: 2014 National Merit Scholarship Program, SAT Perfect Score, The New Jersey Governor’s School of Engineering & Technology, 2014 Union County Superintendent’s Roundtable, Berkeley Heights League of Women Voters, 2014 New Jersey High School “Consumer Bowl,” New Jersey Future Business Leaders of America, Union County Administrators, National Word-Wright Challenge, 2014 New Jersey All-State Choir, Prevention Links of Union County, 2014 County Teen Arts Touring Exhibit, ACL/NJCL National Latin Exam, and Outstanding Athletes. In all, eighty-two students from Governor Livingston were recognized for their achievements.
The two student representatives of the Board of Education, James Longo and Victoria Piatnochka of Governor Livingston, were also lauded for their contributions to the Board over the course of the year.
Following the presentation of the variety of awards, the Board of Education convened for their meeting concerning the issues of the end of the year and into the summer. All of the administrative, educational, personnel, and business, and financial agenda points were approved.