SOMERSET, NJ - With students on break for the summer, the Franklin Township Board of Education is looking to the upcoming school year. 

After developing the district’s goals for the 2019-2020 school year earlier this month, the board approved them at Thursday’s board of education meeting. They put an emphasis on preparing students for life after high school, supporting the district’s long-range facilities plan and expanding early childhood education. 

Here are the four points the district choose to focus on in the upcoming year:

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  • To aid in the expansion of innovative college and career readiness programs, affording students the opportunity to pursue their passions with the necessary academic and social/emotional supports to reach their fullest academic potential as measured by individual academic and cultural gains. 
  • Expand opportunities for increased emphasis and focus on early childhood education.
  • Work to support the district long-range facilities plan with an emphasis on safety/security measures, ensuring that the infrastructure supports technological advancement and provides support for academic program growth while meeting community needs. 
  • Work to further relationships with the community at large and to promote parental engagement of students attending the Franklin Township Public Schools. 

A focus for next year is support for the long-range facilities plan, which the board approved at the meeting after months of preparation by Design Resources Group. 

RELATED: BOE gets long-range facilities plan that identifies future projects for the district

The plan will guide general maintenance and facility improvements needed throughout the district. The list includes everything from getting rid of asbestos floor tiles to installing new roofs. 

The board’s general operating budget will fund much of the work, while other projects will qualify for funding from capital expenses, which is money the board has saved and earmarked for the long-range facilities plan. 

Superintendent John Ravally said at last month’s board meeting that it was unlikely the district would need another referendum for funding, especially after the recent $84 million effort. 

With that endeavor still fresh in the minds of taxpayers, Ravally doesn’t think residents will support another one so soon. Plus, it was a disruptive, multi-year effort that likely isn’t necessary at the moment. 

“I think the district needs time to settle,” he said. 

While the board focused on the future, Mayor Phillip Kramer took a moment to congratulate the district on its achievements over the past year. 

“You have the world champion superintendent of anywhere in the world, or at least in Somerset County. We had a girls basketball team be the best ever in New Jersey, and that’s without exaggeration. The track team did superbly and your academics have come up,” he said. 

The mayor also said he’s seen resident’s attitudes about the district shift recently. 

“I knock on a lot of doors in Franklin and I’ve noticed a change since years ago,” Kramer said. “People used to complain about the school system. They’re not complaining – well they're complaining about taxes – but they're not complaining about the school system anymore.” 

TAPinto Franklin/Somerset is independently owned and operated by  Malik A. Lyons FHS Class of 93’ Graduate. 

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