MONTVILLE, NJ – “Teaming” will no longer be followed for Lazar Middle School seventh and eighth graders for the ’17-’18 school year, according to Superintendent of Schools René Rovtar.

Speaking at the March 7 Montville Township Board of Education meeting, Rovtar said that the Curriculum, Instruction and Technology Committee had made the decision at their last meeting, based on the recommendation of Lazar administration.

Students at Lazar are placed onto one of three teams, specified by the colors yellow, white and green, in order to better coordinate testing schedules, and in order for the teachers to better work together across the major subjects (math, social studies, etc.).

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“We found that 85% of seventh graders are cross-teamed, and 90% of eighth graders are cross-teamed,” Rovtar said.

“Cross-teaming” means that one student may have a social studies teacher from the green team, but a math teacher from the yellow team.

Since world language and “increased course choices” make scheduling students onto a single team harder, eliminating “teaming” will create more flexibility with scheduling, Rovtar said. The teaming system will remain in place for sixth graders, she said.

Snow Day Give Backs

Rovtar said she will make a decision in April regarding “giving back” snow days and utilizing the extra days as vacation days for the district. She said the district is required to give back two days, but since snow is in the forecast for March 10, she does not want to set in stone a decision.

Rovtar said that should the days be given back, they would be at the Memorial Day holiday, resulting in Friday, May 26 and Tuesday, May 30 being additional days off from school. She said days could not be added to Spring Break because of PARCC (state) testing in the elementary schools beginning the Tuesday after Easter.

Other News

State aid figures were received by administration. Rovtar said funding has remained flat. The budget will be presented at the next meeting, March 14. The time has been changed again to 8:00 p.m.; it will be held at Lazar Middle School.

The strategic plan will be presented at the April 4 meeting.

The Branding Committee sent out a questionnaire to help develop a district motto. Board Member Michael Johnson said 170 responses had been received, as well as two responses to the request for proposal to help with a brand proposal.

Rovtar called the high school’s production of the Drowsy Chaperone “one of the best high school productions I’ve ever seen.”

Board President Matthew Kayne called Cedar Hill’s Home and School Association’s donation of $19,000 for air conditioning in the school a “wonderful thing for the organization to do.”