Chris Herren assembly leaves lasting impact on Shawnee High School

The reaction to the Chris Herren assembly at Shawnee High School was no different than any of the other three, according to Superintendent Carol Birnbohm.

The Lenape Regional High School District completed its Chris Herren assemblies on Dec. 5, with Shawnee and Seneca high schools hosting him in the first week of December.

Carol Birnbohm spoke about the incredibly positive reaction that students from the district had to Herren’s assemblies.

The board prepared a packet with reaction and photos from students who were moved by Herren’s speech. She said that many students took to Twitter following the assemblies with their reaction.

“There’s a photo of a wall in one of the schools with purple squares,” Birnbohm said. “Those are all students who pledged their allegiance to Project Purple.”

The assemblies didn’t just touch students, according to Birnbohm, but touched Herren as well. He used a story that was shared by another student in the district at his final presentations at Seneca.

Birnbohm said that yet another student took a message outside of the drug and alcohol theme and said that Herren also spoke about not judging others and treating everyone fairly, tying in with the district’s Defy the Issue message.

In other news:

• The Board of Education approved a Shawnee Jazz Ensemble trip to Boston, Mass., for the weekend of Feb 7. The Jazz Ensemble will be performing at the Berklee College of Music Festival that weekend.
• The Shawnee National Honor Society will be holding a Glow Run on April 4 at the high school. The event will raise money for the Hope Alive Clinics.
• A pair of policies was approved on second reading by the board regarding teacher evaluations and evaluations for tenured teachers. Birnbohm said that the policies simply clean up some of the language and don’t involved any tangible changes.
• The board reviewed and approved the district’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report for the 2012–13 fiscal year at its meeting last week.
The report, which was prepared by Kevin Frenia of Holman Frenia Allison, revealed that all is in order with the district’s finances as has been the case in past years.
“Our surplus is under the limit,” Business Administrator James Hager said.
The school district’s fund balance decreased from the beginning of the 2013 fiscal year. The district began that year with a balance of $11,268,155 in July of 2012 and finished the year with $10,255,594 in June of 2013.
• The Board of Education will hold its reorganization meeting on Jan. 7 at 7:30 p.m. at the district’s building in Shamong.