Education

New Providence BOE Wraps up the School Year; Readies for Fall

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The BOE approved the appointment of Dr. Doreen DiDomenico to the position of a part-time behaviorist as of Sept. 1. Credits: Marianne Ivers
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NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ – In its first summer meeting on Thursday, June 29,  the Board of Education (BOE) announced some personnel changes, filled summer employment positions,  provided a construction update and appointed the district’s insurance agents and carriers. The BOE also discussed enrollment.

Among the most notable changes to personnel was the resignation of Science Department Head James McGeechan. However, McGreechan is not leaving the district, but following his passion for teaching, Superintendent David Miceli said. McGreechan will be teaching upper level engineering classes starting this fall.

The board also approved Vincent Carangelo to the position of Director of Athletics. Carangelo will continue his duties as Assistant Principal at the high school through end of July. The current Director of Athletics, Rocco Constantino, has resigned as of June 30 to accept the Director of Athletics position at Santa Barbara City College in California.

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Miceli noted that the district has “a lot of talented folks” as staff members. The current supervisors are not retiring any time soon, so there is a little room for advancements of some staff members. Therefore, some teachers are accepting supervisory positions in other districts. Among teachers leaving the district are Joseph Carollo and Kristie Arnold.

Furthermore, the BOE approved the appointment of Dr. Doreen DiDomenico to the position of a part-time behaviorist as of Sept. 1.

Business Administrator James Testa provided the board with the construction update. The construction crew came in as soon as the students finished their school year last week. “Today we had six construction meetings,” he said and expressed his satisfaction with the communications with the construction supervisor. Everything is still on schedule, and the construction crew may work on weekends in order to keep up with the project’s timetable. Testa estimated that the only work to be completed in September is the door and lock replacement, which can be done at night.

The board also approved the district’s insurance agents and carriers. Board Member Ira Krauss explained that the medical carrier change resulted in annual savings of $650,000.  The district will place $500,000 in the cap reserve to be used for the Lieder Field upgrade in coming years. Testa noted that the current turf is expected to last a few more years.

Miceli told the board that the district had a total of 2,437 students, including 36 out-of-district students, at the end of May. The enrollment was down by three students compared to April. However, the district keeps monitoring the enrollment numbers. The board’s Enrollment Committee is trying to get a sense of future student population by gathering data from real-estate agents and live birth rates. However, Assistant Superintendent Scott Hough noted that it is difficult to predict any reliable enrollment trend based on the real estate market.

Miceli explained that the district will be monitoring the borough’s potential affordable and market housing projects. If the proposed zoning changes in the borough will materialize it could have a “huge” effect on the district’s enrollment numbers.

The next board meeting will take place on August 24 at 7:30 pm at the Allen W. Roberts School Media Center.

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