ALJ Students and Parents Speak Out About Change in Clark School Leadership

Parent Cara Hund spoke on behalf of ALJ Principal Rick Delmonaco. Credits: Elizabeth Clee
ALJ Student Brooke Gallo presented the BOE with a petition signed by ALJ students, requesting their principal be allowed to stay at the high school. Credits: Elizabeth Clee
Jennifer Gallo approached the BOE with her perspective on why the BOE should reconsider the changes to school leadership. Credits: Elizabeth Clee

CLARK, NJ – The Clark Board of Education met Tuesday evening for the last time before the end of the school year. The evening’s agenda was packed with over 140 items up to vote. 

The first vote of the evening addressed 65 personnel items on the agenda including retirements, resignations, reassignments, rehires and new appointments.   One of the most controversial items on the list was a change in leadership at the high school for the upcoming school year. 

According to the agenda, Rick Delmonaco will become principal of the Carl H. Kumpf Middle School and the current Kumpf principal, Jennifer Feeley, will move to Arthur L. Johnson High School effective September 1, 2017.

Sign Up for E-News

This change brought many students and parents to the meeting who spoke out and asked the BOE to reconsider their plans to move Delmonaco from the high school.   “Mr. Delmonaco knows all the kids; he’s been to every single event whether he has to be there or not.  He is a great role model and supports every single student and he has amazing connection with his kids,” said student Brooke Gallo.  

In her emotional plea to the BOE, Gallo held up a petition with the signatures of 513 ALJ students asking that Delmonaco stay at ALJ.   According to Gallo, she was able to collect those signatures from fellow students in less than one school day.

Parents joined the rally to keep Delmonaco in his current position.   “Please do not give up on our principal Mr. Delmonaco at ALJ.  He demonstrates a quality of a principal with such support, dedication and school sprit to his students, as well as discipline.  He is an asset to ALJ,” said Cara Hund, mother of two students in ALJ. 

Equally passionate in her plea, another mother talked about how Delmonaco pulled her son, a current ALJ Senior, from out of his shell when he first came to the school and helped him become the young man she sees today.    According to her, Delmonaco knows what to do with youth this age.  

“We could not ask for a better principal, he is perfect for the HS and why anybody would think to change where he is, he is so good at gearing these people to be young adults.  He doesn’t treat them like they are students or little kids, he treats them as adults, he is at every event,” said Jennifer Gallo.

The BOE voted to make the change in leadership at ALJ and Kumpf as listed in the agenda.  "I am unable to discuss personnel decisions, but actions are always taken after thorough consideration and with the best interest of all our students in mind, "  said Ed Grande, Superintendent of Clark Schools.   Jill Curran, BOE President made a similar statement, “This was a personnel decision so I am not at liberty to talk about the principals.   The BOE members do not take their job lightly.  We work closely with the superintendent to make decisions that we feel are best for all the students of the Clark school district.”

--------------  is Clark’s official electronic news source and the only free daily paper. 

Sign up for our free daily enews.



TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


Upcoming Events


Wed, July 25, 9:00 AM

Durham School Services School Bus, Roselle

Hiring Event Open House Durham School Services ...

Business & Finance


Wed, July 25, 7:00 PM

Cranford United Methodist Church, Cranford

Wednesday Night Prayer Time at Cranford United ...

Religions And Spirituality


Sat, July 28, 12:00 PM

Clark Recreation Center, Clark

Clark PD vs Clark FD BBQ Cook-Off

Food & Drink Police & Fire

“Family Fun & Flix” in Warinanco Park Tuesday, July 24 Featuring “Peter Rabbit"

July 20, 2018

Family Fun & Flix, a free summer entertainment and film series presented by the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders and Union County Department of Parks and Recreation, continues on Tuesday, July 24 with the presentation of “Peter Rabbit” at Warinanco Park, on the border of Elizabeth and Roselle. 

As part of the evening’s events, UC Get Fit, a health initiative ...

Residents Taking Action Against White Supremacist Fliers Found Around Bridgewater, Bedminster, Other Local Areas

July 18, 2018

BRIDGEWATER, NJ - Residents of Bridgewater, Somerville, Morristown and surrounding communities are mobilizing for action after they found posters around town promoting Identity Evropa, which the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has labeled a white supremacist group.

According to Bridgewater resident Stacey Friedlander, a member of the “Not In Our Town – Bridgewater/Raritan” ...

"Tired of Cronyism? Yeah, us too!"

July 19, 2018

The Union County Freeholders’ decision to appoint State Senator and newly-elected Union County

Democratic Chairman, Nick Scutari’s chief of staff, Ed Oatman as County Manager smelled of corruption

from the start. To place a political consultant like Oatman in the role of overseeing 2,800 employees and

running the day-to-day operations of the $500 million county budget ...


AtlantiCast: Episode 18

On this week’s AtlantiCast, you’ll find out how accessing care at Atlantic Health System is now easier, more affordable and closer to home than ever, learn which item from the produce aisle could be the newest weapon against cancer, see what Atlantic Health System, the New York Times and Instagram all have in common and much more.




Jun 29, 1927 - Apr 23, 2018
Margaret (Peggy) Kirk Leonard passed away Monday, April 23rd, surrounded by her loved ones. Peggy ...
Read more