WEST ORANGE, NJ - Monday's Board of Education was short and to the point, with reports from the interim superintendent and board members.
Residents concerned with fairness on the Board of Education once again held a Candlelight Vigil outside WOHS prior to the start of the meeting. This stems from board member Sandra Mordecai not becoming vice president of the board in January.
The board tabled the approval of the Assistant Softball Coaching staff at WOHS pending completion of paperwork. The same went for the new Baseball Coach at Roosevelt.
Interim Superintent James O'Neill addressed misinformation about the hiring process of teachers and reiterated the procedures for criminal background checks of potential teachers. He also stated that each principal advises staff to not be alone with students, provide sexual harrassment workshops at least once every five years, and review Harrassment, Intimidation and Bullying each year.
This was in response to the arrest of Washington School teacher Christopher Yonitch last week. He told Washington School parents in attendance that the district hoped to have a replacement for Yonitch shortly. In addition, he noted that by law people are presumed innocent until proven guilty, and as such, Yonitch was on paid leave until such time that the case is resolved. He is currently suspended through the remainder of the school year. There are additional counselors available at Washington School. The district, in addition to all protective protocols in place, is willing to review all policies and procedures in and out of the district to strengthen the protection of the students and training of the staff.