Springfield Board of Education Reorganizes and Holds Their First Meeting of the New Year

Swearing in the newly elected members Credits: Jeff Rosenberg
Laura Gamarekian, write-in, new board member Credits: Jeff Rosenberg
The Board of Education #! Credits: Jeff Rosenberg
The Board of Education #2 Credits: Jeff Rosenberg
Not a big turnout Credits: Jeff Rosenberg

SPRINGFIELD, NJ - With the start of the new year, the Board of Education held its reorganizational meeting on Monday night, January 8th. The meeting started with Matt Clark, the School Administrator and Board Secretary announcing the results of the November election. Marc Miller and Kristi Garamekian won 2 uncontested seats. The third open seat was awarded to Laura Rubin, the write-in candidate with 335 votes.

Then, the first order of business was to have all the new members sworn into office. Once the Board was “official”, last year’s Vice President, Scott Silverstein was nominated and voting in as the Board’s new President for 2018. Mr. Silverstein then nominated Marc Miller to be the Vice President and the Board voted in affirmation.

The 2018 Board consists of:

Sign Up for E-News

Scott Silverstein (previous Vice President, current President)

Marc Miller (current Vice President

Robin Cornelison (previous President)

Scott Donner

Hector Munoz

Jacqueline Shanes

Hillary Turnbull

Kristy Rubin

Laura Gamarekian (write-in candidate/winner)

It was announced that the Policy Manual, which has been in the process of being revised over the past 18 months will continue to be worked on. Old policies are being revised and new policies are being adopted. The final piece of business was to vote on a series of business matters. All motions were passed without discussion and with full consent. Finally, President Silverstein appointed Scott Donner to continue on the Union County Education Services Board, representing the Springfield school district.

The meeting then moved into a Regular Meeting session. First up, Scott Silverstein, on behalf of the entire Board, presented a plaque to Robin Cornelison in recognition of a job well done as the Board President throughout 2017. During the Superintendent’s report, Superintendent Davino also expressed his respect for Mrs.Cornelison’s tenure as President, as well as Mr. Wolcott, a long time Board member whose seat just expired at the end of last year.

Additionally, Mr. Davino mentioned that a safety review, involving a young student, is currently under way - but stopped short of giving any details because it is still an ongoing investigation. However, the parent, Samantha Kestin, had already made the incident public on a town’s Facebook page, and during the public comment session detailed it for the record: School bus #30 dropped off  her 4 year old daughter (a student at Walton) in front of their house, and immediately drove away before confirming that the child was safely transferred to the parent. The driveway was snowy and icy and the temperature was below freezing. In talking to the Aide after-the-fact, Mrs. Kestin indicated that the Aide said she was apologetic, and thought the front door was open (and assumed she was there to welcome her child).

The Kestins provided video from their porch security camera to back-up the story. Mr. Davino asked for as much video as was available, as it would be helpful in the investigation. The child’s mother said she would not allow her child on the bus as long as that same Aide was working on it, whereas she had acted negligently and would prefer if that Aide was transferred elsewhere. A police report was also filed.

Another issue Mrs. Kestin brought to the Board’s attention was regarding her older son. She claimed that the bus he rode on to the Middle School did not have any heat, the windows were left open (possibly broken), and there was snow on the seat (causing her son’s pants and shirt to get wet), again - all in sub-freezing temperatures. The Board will be investigating both issues with the bus company.

In other business, Vito Gagliardo one of the Board’s attorneys, gave an “ethics review”. He stated case studies and quizzed the members on proper ethical behavior. Members will be required to take mandatory ethics training and they will all receive ongoing newsletters and updates.

Board members were asked to submit their requests for committee placement, and President Silverstein will decide who gets appointed where.

To end the meeting, the Board entered into close session to discuss items protected by attorney/client privilege. No actions were to be taken.

The next meeting is scheduled for January 22nd. is Springfield’s free daily news source. Sign up for our daily eNews and follow us on Facebook and Twitter @TAPSpringfield.

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


Rahway Mayor Giacobbe to Attend Grand Opening of First Wawa Store in Rahway; Free Coffee Offered Through July 16

July 12, 2018

RAHWAY, NJ - Rahway Mayor Raymond A. Giacobbe will be on hand to cut the ribbon at 10 a.m. Thursday. July 12, for the new Wawa store's grand opening at 280 St. Georges Avenue in Rahway.

The 24-hour Wawa store will officially open at 8 a.m. on Thursday, with the grand opening ceremonies to follow. Free coffee will be offered at the store through July 16. Wally Goose, the ...

To Our Current and Future Representatives

July 18, 2018

To Our Current and Future Representatives - Wherever They May Be:

We can never forget we are a nation of immigrants. 

We cannot fall prey to fear, ignorance and anger when we  have been historically driven by freedom and justice. 

We must have the courage and will to fight hate, bigotry and prejudice. 

We must not wake up to what we hoped was a bad dream and ...

Rutgers Hikes Tuition, Student Fees for 2018-2019 Academic Year

July 18, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - Rutgers University Board of Governors today approved a 2.3 percent hike in tuition and fees, as well as increases for dorm rooms and meals, for the 2018-2019 academic year.

The increase now brings the annual cost for undergraduate students to $14,975, which is $337 more than this past school year.

Student housing will increase 1.9 percent, and ...

Murphy Administration Takes Action to Help Smokers Quit

July 18, 2018

Eliminates Prior Approval for Medicaid Tobacco Cessation Medications; Counseling Options to be Expanded

July 16, 2018

(TRENTON) – The Murphy administration on Monday announced new steps to help New Jersey Medicaid recipients quit using tobacco by making it easier to receive tobacco cessation medications and counseling.

“Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death ...

Upcoming Events

Mon, July 23, 7:45 AM

17 Kent Place Boulevard, Summit

Monday Morning Yoga

Health & Wellness

Wed, July 25, 6:00 PM

JCC of Central NJ, Scotch Plains

The JCC’s Barracudas Swim Team Meet the Coaches ...


Wed, July 25, 7:30 PM

Chatham United Methodist Church, Chatham

Masterwork’s Summer Sings Conclude with Verdi ...

Arts & Entertainment