WARREN, NJ – The Watchung Hills Regional High School (WHRHS) faculty and administration includes two new interim staff, one returning staff, and 14 new staff with which to begin the 2019-2020 School Year.
The new members include five new World Languages teachers, two new Mathematics teachers, two new Science teachers, and one each new Social Studies, English, and Choral Music teachers. There is also a new Guidance Counselor and a new Vice Principal.
“The new staff for the 2019-2020 School Year were welcomed to WHRHS at a three day New Teacher Orientation Program, Tuesday, Aug. 20, to Thursday, Aug. 22,” said Beth Scheiderman, WHRHS Director of Human Resources and Professional Development. “The new staff received information about WHRHS systems, were introduced to key resource staff, were given tours of the WHRHS facilities, and had opportunities to get to know one another. All the new staff were eager to familiarize themselves with the school, and were looking forward to meeting their fellow faculty members during the full staff development program on Wednesday, Aug. 28, and Thursday, Aug. 29.”
The new teachers were also at WHRHS for New Student Orientation Day, Thursday, Aug. 29, from 7:30 to 10:30 p.m. First day of school for the 2019-2020 School Year was Tuesday, Sept. 3. First Day was a full day of class.
Julie Patterson is the Interim Director of Guidance who will be at WHRHS until mid-to-late October. In addition to 22 years of experience as a Director of School Counseling, Patterson has experience as a school counselor and biology teacher.
“I am appreciative of Julie coming forward to join the faculty as the search for a Director of Guidance continues, we are in excellent hands,” said Scheiderman.
Doug Radziewicz will be teaching vocal music this fall. He has pursued his two passions of music and baseball through his professional career. Radziewicz began his career as a professional baseball player in the St. Louis Cardinals minor league chain for several years before sharing his talents as a baseball coach at the college level. He has been a music teacher for Montgomery School District and was the music department chair at Rutgers Prep in Franklin Township. Most recently, he taught piano and vocal music in Delaware Valley Regional School District, Frenchtown.
Chris Beckert rejoined the WHRHS staff as the Student Data Systems Manager this summer.
The New Vice Principal is Jim Flakker, who joined the district on July 1. He began his career working in the IT field as a vice president, followed by conducting research for NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration). Flakker then began working as an instructor for Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md., and Rutgers University, New Brunswick. He obtained a position as a Physics Teacher for Governor Livingston High School, Berkeley Heights, before becoming the Science Chair for Kent Place School, Summit. In addition to this work in education, he was an assistant football coach for both Livingston Public Schools and Berkeley Heights. Flakker holds a master’s degree from Rutgers University, and an Education Specialist degree from Seton Hall University, South Orange.
The new Administrative Assistant to the Principal is Laurie Grafer, who joined the WHRHS staff in July. Grafer comes to WHRHS with an extensive background in school operations. She worked as an administrative assistant to a vice principal and a principal for Somerville Public schools for several years before her time in Watchung Borough Public Schools, where she was the executive administrative assistant to the superintendent. She was in her position at Watchung for more than nine years.
The five new World Language teachers are: Alex Albaret, French; Natalia Berardo, Christina Longo, and Ofelia Rodriguez, Spanish; and Lam Wong, Chinese;
• Alex Albaret graduated with a bachelor’s degree in French from Montclair University, and has had a variety of professional experiences including ESL (English as a Second Language) instructor for adults in private industry and curriculum director for Ivy Education Corporation, Bernardsville. Albaret taught middle school French for Watchung Public Schools, and now joins WHRHS as a high school teacher of French.
• Natalia Berardo holds a bachelor’s degree from Rutgers University, and previously taught Spanish in Hillsborough High School. Prior to teaching, Berardo earned her first bachelor’s degree in English translation in Buenos Aires Argentina, and worked as a freelance translator and a tutor.
• Christina Longo began her career in education as an instructional aide for 10 years before teaching ESL and Spanish in Bridgewater-Raritan School District. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Seton Hall University, and a post-baccalaureate certificate from St Elizabeth’s University, Convent Station
• Ofelia Rodriguez also began her career in education as an instructional aide, having previously worked in West Orange. She holds her bachelor’s degree from Rutgers University and has taught Spanish for Newark Prep Charter School and Kenilworth Public Schools.
• Lam Wong earned both her bachelor’s degree and master’s degree at South China Normal School. She has taught Mandarin and ESL in Macau, which is across the Delta River from Hong Kong. For the last three years, she taught Mandarin at the Tong Yan Chinese School in Jersey City.
• The two new Mathematics teachers are: Kavish Dhaibar and Daniel Lamson, who will also teach Computer Science.
• Kavish Dhaibar first came to WHRHS as a tennis coach and was then Board of Education approved as a teacher of Mathematics, so he is already actively engaged in the school community. He holds certifications in Mathematics and Special Education and has worked as a coach and teacher for Pequannock Township and Berkeley Heights School Districts. Dhaibar also worked as a sales engineer for several years, in addition to his career in teaching and coaching.
• Daniel Lamson is a teacher of Mathematics and Computer Science. He holds certification in both Mathematics and Special Education, having earned his bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and master’s degree in Education. Lamson began his career as an engineer in private industry and his teaching career at Warren County Technical Schools,teaching Mathematics and Computer Science.
The two new Science teachers are: Mark Harley, Physics, and Pamela Phillips, Biology;
• Mark Harley joins the science department as a teacher of Physics. After earning his bachelor’s degree in Physics Secondary Education at the University of Maryland, College Park, he taught physics in South Orange-Maplewood and Ramapo Indian Hills School Districts. He earned his master’s degree from Montclair University and most recently worked in Clark as the grades 6-12 supervisor of STEAM programs.
• Pam Phillips is an experienced Mathematics and Science teacher who joins WHRHS as a teacher of Biology. After earning her degree in Molecular Biology from the University of Colorado, she worked in the pharmaceutical industry before becoming a teacher. Her teaching experience includes Somerset Hills, Madison, and Chatham, teaching Algebra I and middle school science.
The new Social Studies teacher is Patrick Ganley.
• Patrick Ganley is a recent graduate from college, having earned his bachelor’s degree in History and Secondary Education from Penn State University, State College, Pa. There he student-taught in the Tyrone Area School District, near Penn State. Ganley has also worked as a substitute teacher for the Morris Hills Regional School District.
The new English teacher is Lexiang Chiarulli.
• Lexi Chiarulli comes to WHRHS from the West Morris Regional School District, Chester, where she taught high school English and advised the National Honor Society. Chiarulli holds a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in English from Rutgers University, and an additional master’s degree in education from Centenary College, Hackettstown.
The Guidance Counselor is Monica Rito, a 2010 WHRHS graduate.
• Monica Rito joins the guidance department as a Guidance Counselor. She is a graduate of WHRHS, and has earned her bachelor’s degree from the College of Charleston, Charlestown, S.C., and her master’s degree from RutgersUniversity. Rito began her career as a middle school teacher first in Readington and then in Bound Brook, where she also completed her internship as a School Counselor.