Sports

Clark Parents and Students Continue Pleas to Save ALJ Teams

027f33c1e354a7398309_DSCN0757.JPG
Garwood resident and parent Bill Worobetz questioned the board about the future of cross country at ALJ. Credits: Kristen Busch
0b507709cc785cc7460a_DSCN0762.JPG
David Sener shared his concern about his daughter's swimming career at ALJ. Credits: Kristen Busch
3be434203568bcbec328_DSCN0759.JPG
Board member Robert Smorol explains the state of the budget to audience. Credits: Kristen Busch
6b37de571709e3451992_DSCN0763.JPG
ALJ student Tyler Moreira shared ideas on how to decrease expenses for the ALJ teams. Credits: Kristen Busch
027f33c1e354a7398309_DSCN0757.JPG

CLARK, NJ – Rumored cuts to Arthur L. Johnson’s athletic programs remained a hot topic at the July 10 Clark Board of Education meeting.  As previously reported, the district is struggling to close an almost two-million-dollar budget deficit.  

At the June 13 meeting, board members tried to quell rumors that certain athletic programs at ALJ may be dropped for the upcoming school year.  At Monday’s meeting, the board reiterated that no decisions have been made yet.

“We will continue to look at every angle until its solved.  And just know that almost everyone on this board either has children in the district or had children in the district,” said Board President Jill Curran.  “So, we want what’s best for all the kids in this district as well.”

Sign Up for E-News

Garwood resident Bill Worobetz thanked Superintendent Ed Grande for responding to his concerns over the last few weeks. Worobetz’s son is part of the cross-country team at ALJ.  He spoke of the athletes’ dedication to their sport and his concern that the season is set to begin in six weeks. “These kids were there at 7:00 this morning,” said Worobetz.  He added that once he heard that the team may be dissolved, he searched for other possibilities for his son but came up empty.

Worobetz also stated that there was no notification about the possible athletic cuts.  Board member Robert Smorol responded that, “there is nothing to notify you about right now.”

“We never said any sport that was going to be cut,” added Board member Laura Caliguire.  “Members of the district and community came to the [June 13] meeting telling us what was going to be cut.  We’ve had confidential discussions of possibilities, of things that may be done…  None of us know where the specific sports were named.”

David Sener, whose daughter swims at ALJ, said he is looking at private school to give his daughter the opportunity to continue with her sport.  He expressed his frustration that while the Clark swim team does not generate a lot of expenditures, other school districts in the area, such as Elizabeth, have better facilities and equipment.  Smorol responded that those districts get “about 10 to 15 times more state aid then Clark.”

ALJ student athlete Tyler Moreira shared money saving ideas he had shared with Grande.  He cited “pay-to-play” as an option for some of the teams.  To cut down on bus costs, he suggested that athletes and parents carpool to events when possible. 

“Just possible ideas to not cut varsity sports, no matter what sport it is,” said Moreira.  “I’m trying to figure out what is possible so that no one is greatly affected.”

“We are going to try to do everything we can.  We are in a crisis and we don’t want to leave anybody behind,” said Board member Thomas Lewis.  “I don’t want you to think you are speaking on deaf ears.  We care.”

“We don’t want to get rid of any sports,” said Smorol.  “Unfortunately, no matter what decision we make… somebody’s not going to be happy.  But we have to do what we believe is in the best interest of the district.”

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

Sign up for our free daily enews.

Download the TAPinto App!   Click here for Android.  Click here for iOS.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Clark

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_855652b94dad7cfd1c72_mini_magick20180618-30381-1j0t0jb

Tue, July 17, 6:00 PM

Westfield Presbyterian Church, Westfield

Youth Mental Health First Aid

Education Health & Wellness

Carousel_image_574768912fb23a4cacc7_bfeb2b8d2a5b0913fb60_2f2194e6f686708fbbc3_pd_fd_bbq

Sat, July 28, 12:00 PM

Clark Recreation Center, Clark

Clark PD vs Clark FD BBQ Cook-Off

Food & Drink Police & Fire

Emma's Brick Oven to Host Your Favorite Pup

July 13, 2018

This Tuesday, July 17, Emma's Brick Oven will host your favorite pup at Kids Night Out! Kids can also enjoy face painting from 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.   Come enjoy great food with  and make memories with the family.  .  

Geoffrey the Giraffe Moves In To New Brunswick Children's Hospital

July 11, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - Over a stretch of nearly 70 years, Geoffrey the Giraffe at Toys R Us stores was the symbol of happy times for generations of children, and now he may provide those same feelings for children coming to a hospital.

"From this day forward, Geoffrey stands tall in our lobby to encourage our smallest patients to smile when they enter our facilities," said John ...

Ready to Pay College Tuition Bills?

So you've applied and been accepted and your child is heading off to college shortly.    Are you ready to pay the bill that is coming soon?  Take a listen to Chris Curran's video below as he gives suggestions of what you should be doing now so you are ready to pay the bill and don't forget to check out his book College Funding ...

Open Letter to Cranford Planning Board

July 9, 2018

Open Letter to Cranford Planning Board:

As you know, Hartz is scheduled to go before the Planning Board on July 18th.  Since last year, Hartz has postponed their meeting numerous times with no pushback that we can see whatsoever from the Planning Board.  

We are asking the Planning Board to direct the planning board attorney to send Hartz’s counsel a letter requiring that ...

Obituaries

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