Education Monthly: Board looking ahead to September

By: Caryn Shaw, Board President, Moorestown Township Board of Education

The Moorestown Township Public School District is a strong school community filled with passionate and dedicated employees, parents and most importantly, students. Together we need to help one another heal from the pandemic’s significant negative effects on our community.

Despite the uncertainty this pandemic has brought, we can confidently say that we are planning to return to full-day in-person school in September. The administration, principals, teachers, staff members and board members are all committed to having our students back full-time in the fall. Although some details such as COVID-19 protocols will need to be determined, based on health guidance at that time, planning is underway to ensure the safe and successful full return to school in September.

Additionally, the board is working to find a strong, experienced interim superintendent to serve the district beginning July 1. This action comes following the decision of the current Superintendent, Dr. Scott McCartney, to retire from Moorestown at the end of June. Our board of education appreciates the stability, care and dedication Dr. McCartney has shown our district and wishes Dr. McCartney well in the next journey of his life. The interim superintendent will support our strong central administration staff and our building administrators and ultimately assist with the transition to a permanent superintendent. The board is reviewing applications, will interview potential candidates during executive session at a special meeting on May 13 and hopes to have an interim superintendent appointed by the June board meeting.

At this time, we also have an inquiry out regarding a Request for Proposal (RFP) to find search firms to assist us with the permanent superintendent search process. With the support of the chosen firm, the board will be conducting a full search for a new superintendent, which will be extensive and inclusive and involve employees, parents, students and community stakeholders.

The Moorestown Board of Education adopted the 2021–2022 budget at its April 27 regular meeting by an 8 to 1 vote. The total amount of the budget for general fund expenses is $78,172,940, of which $67,233,217 shall be raised by utilizing the 2 percent tax levy authority and using $190,000 in banked cap. The current estimated budget impact amounts to $99.34/year or an $8.28/month tax increase for the average assessed home of $457,793. To balance the budget, activity and parking fees were included. The board considered modifying the courtesy busing mileage to align to the state-required mileage but elected to table that discussion. To review the user-friendly budget, go to www.mtps.com.

The next regular meeting of the board of education is May 18 at 7 p.m.in the William Allen Middle School Auditorium. This will be the board’s first in-person meeting since the pandemic began. As our students have gone back in-person, we feel we should as well. We will make sure we have a large enough space that is appropriately socially distanced so that the public can attend and give public comment. We will live stream the meetings so the public will still be able to view meetings remotely. In the meantime, if you have any questions, feel free to reach out to Caryn Shaw, Board President, at cshaw@mtps.com