MONTVILLE, NJ – The Montville Township Public Schools Board of Education met for a record-breaking quick ten minutes on Feb. 19.

Board President Charles Grau announced that former board president and current board member Karen Cortellino has been nominated to serve as New Jersey School Boards Association Vice President for Legislation and Resolutions. Elections will take place in May at the NJSBA semi annual Delegate Assembly. Cortellino had served as president of the Morris County School Boards Association for 5 1/2 years before stepping down in January 2019. She also served as Montville Board of Education president for 5 1/2 years concurrently serving in both positions for 3 years. 

“It’s an honor and well deserved,” Grau said. “Karen went through a rigorous interview process and came out successful. Congratulations and thanks for everything you’ve done not only for the state but for Montville over the years.”

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Board Member Michael Palma said he hoped everyone would come to see the counseling department and Drug Awareness Council showing of the movie “Angst” on March 12.

“The film is a 55-minute documentary that explores anxiety, its causes, effects and what people can do about it,” according to a newsletter written by Superintendent of Schools René Rovtar. “The goal of the film is to generate conversation and to raise awareness about anxiety and encourage students to reach out for help. The film features candid interviews with children and young adults (including Olympic champion Michael Phelps) who suffer or have suffered from anxiety and what they've learned about it. It includes discussions with mental health experts about the causes of anxiety and its sociological effects as well as help, resources and tools.”

The district will be having an early dismissal on that day to enable staff to view the film and receive professional development, Rovtar wrote. The movie will be shown to all Lazar and high school students. 

“Over the past 18 months, the district has seen a marked increase in the number of students expressing anxiety, depression, and indicating their intent to harm themselves. We want to do everything we can to make students feel comfortable in seeking help when they find themselves in this situation,” Rovtar wrote. The movie will be shown Tuesday, March 12 at 7 p.m. in the high school auditorium. There will be a question and answer discussion after the film featuring a clinician and a young adult speaker from the Minding Your Mind Group.

Grau said a committee is being formed regarding mid-term exams at the high school. Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Instruction Andrea Woodring is heading up the committee.

On March 19 the board will hold the first public hearing of the budget. The meeting will be at 7:30 p.m. at the Municipal Building.

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