Thursday, May 26, 2022

Shamong board of education starts the year with gratitude

Board members cite faculty and staff efforts during COVID

The Shamong board of education held its regular meeting on Jan 18 and expressed its gratitude for the work of faculty, staff, students and families during COVID.

The Shamong Township Board of Education held its regular meeting on Jan 18 and expressed its gratitude to all teachers and staff for the hard work they’ve done despite COVID.

Superintendent Christine Vespe noted the staff’s resilience.

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“The first two weeks of January proved to be very difficult times for schools to remain open, with the number of positive staff members and student outbreaks causing many districts to switch to remote learning,” she said “As a district, I’m very grateful for the administrative team and our entire staff for helping to juggle, modify schedules, take on additional roles, cover classes and duties. 

“We remained open and in person at a  time when one in four schools in New Jersey were remote,” 

Vespe also cited school nurses, neighboring superintendents in the Lenape Regional High School District who collaborate and consult with one another to  advocate for the community, coaches and club organizers, the Home and School Association (HSA), the Shamong Foundation for Education and especially students and families. 

“I try very hard to personally and continually thank everyone for their contributions, and I wanted to make sure I publicly acknowledged the work that goes into keeping us safe, healthy and going forward,” Vespe noted. 

 

“We truly have a wonderful team.”

During member reports, Tim Carroll, principal of Indian Mills Memorial School, praised the school’s student council for taking up a collection to benefit the Cathedral Kitchen in Camden, with items that included 225 pairs of socks, 132 toothbrushes and  142 tubes of toothpaste. 

Carroll also praised John Halligan, who appeared at a school assembly in December and talked about his book, “Ryan’s Story: Loved Beyond Belief.” It focused on his son’s suicide during middle school, something his father talked about to students in fifth to eighth grade and parents. 

Two presentations were also given at the meeting, one by district Business Administrator/ Board Secretary Laura Archer, who discussed the 2022-’23 school  budget, and Curriculum Director Laura Hoffman, who presented Start Strong statistics and data for the schools. 

The board also approved the retirement of long standing employee John Rudman, an eighth grade social studies teacher at Indian Mills Memorial School.

The next board of education meeting will be at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Feb 15, at the Indian Mills Memorial Library.

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