Monday, April 29, 2013
Diane DiGiuseppe 'a superb choice,' says former BOE president.
The Kinnelon Public Schools Board of Education voted 4-2 to drop the "interim" from Diane DiGiuseppe's superintendent title Thursday night. "It's very exciting," DiGiuseppe said of her new appointment. DiGiuseppe took over as the interim superintendent after James Opiekun retired from the role after 10 years in May 2012. Since June 1, 2012, she has been on what former Board of Education President Margaret Zybrick called "a year-long job interview," during which she dealt with hurricanes, snow storms and a national focus on school security following the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in December. "There was a huge outpouring of support from the teachers and administration," DiGiuseppe said. "There was a huge group of people there for…
Friday, March 29, 2013
Kinnelon BOE adopts 2013-14 school budget.
Under the 2013-14 school budget unanimously adopted by the Kinnelon Public Schools Board of Education Thursday night, the average Kinnelon home will see taxes increase by about $180 over last year's school tax bill. The 2013-14 school budget calls for $36,702,727 in total expenditures, an increase of about .7 percent over last year's $36,458,077 budget. The amount to be levied in taxes will increase by 2.2 percent, however, the district received a waiver from the state allowing the district budget to come in over the state-mandated 2 percent increase cap. The increase figure of $180 is based on the average assessed Kinnelon home at $390,000 and, as Interim Superintendent of Schools Diane DiGiuseppe explained, Kinnelon's total assessed …
Sunday, February 10, 2013
Salary increases of up to 2.2 percent included in agreement, union president says.
The Kinnelon Education Association (KEA) and Kinnelon Board of Education have finally reached an agreement on a new contract after more than a year of negotiations. The new contract was ratified last week after KEA President Tom Shannon said the union felt the report prepared by a state-appointed fact-finder "reflects a fair compromise." The fact-finder was needed after the parties could not agree on terms of the contract. Included in the contract are salary increases of 1.2 percent for the first year, 2 percent in the second year and 2.2 percent in the third year for 2011-2014. New salary guides still need to be ratified at a later date, Shannon said, a process that could take several months. Kinnelon Board of Education members were …
Wednesday, February 6, 2013
Tests cost $89 each as student representative said her peers feel 'undermined.'
Being successful sometimes come with a price and for some Kinnelon High School students, that price may be too high. Kinnelon Board of Education Student Representative Anthe Stylianou was unable to make it to the Jan. 31 board meeting, but asked that her report be read aloud. In it, as read by Board Member Mike Petruccelli, she said that the high cost of AP exams discourages her peers from wanting to take them. "Students want to be challenged but they're feeling undermined and stressed," Stylianou wrote. Many students who are enrolled in AP courses take several AP exams per year. Board Member Brian Davin said he could sympathize with Stylianou's concerns and noted that his two high school-aged kids are planning to take the exams. "Between …
Sunday, February 3, 2013
After more than a year of negotiating, KEA and Kinnelon Board of Education may have reached an agreement.
Members of the Kinnelon Education Association are expected to ratify a new contract with the Kinnelon Board of Education on Monday, according to a a union representative. Vickie Walsh, a representative of the New Jersey Education Association who has been assisting the KEA in the negotiations process, said a vote of the union's membership is expected to be tallied on Monday. Meanwhile, the Kinnelon Board of Education began celebrating the settlement with comments about members' appreciation of both parties during Thursday's board meeting. "This truly did take a village to get to this point," Board Member Marianne DeAlessi said. The new contract will be the result of more than a year-and-a-half of negotiating, including both parties entering…
Friday, February 1, 2013
Superintendent said officers should serve as comfort to parents, not a concern.
Police officers will be increasing their presence in Kinnelon schools, Interim Superintendent of Schools Diane DiGiuseppe announced Thursday night. Elected officials and school leaders have been meeting with police to talk about the safety and security of Kinnelon's youth since the days that followed the school shooting in Newtown, Conn. in which 20 children were killed. At a recent Kinnelon Council meeting, Mayor Robert Collins said the protocols and procedures already in place in the school district were being reviewed again to ensure safety of the entire school community. Collins said he had met with DiGiuseppe and asked her to talk to the Kinnelon Board of Education about safety measures the district could implement and to come back to…
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
School board will also vote on several class trips during regular meeting.
Wednesday, January 30
The Kinnelon Board of Education will vote Thursday on whether the school district will once again participate in Route 23 Automall's AP Challenge this year. The competition, hosted by the Butler car dealership, invites high school students from several local school districts-including Butler, Pompton Lakes, Pequannock and now West Milford-to have a chance at winning a brand new car when they score a 3 or better on AP exams. Last year, Kinnelon had many juniors and seniors participate but ultimately, the winner was a Pompton Lakes student. Also at Thursday's meeting, the board will vote on several class trips, according to the agenda, including for high-schoolers to attend Academic Decathalon gatherings and for Stonybrook School students to…
Thursday, January 24, 2013
Parents can sign up beginning Feb. 12.
Wednesday, January 16, 2013
Margaret Zybrick most proud of district students' achievements and for standing up for what she believes in.
After a decade of serving on the Kinnelon Board of Education, Margaret Zybrick, the board's leader for the past several years, said goodbye. Zybrick's third term had come to an end last month and the Kinnelon resident of 24 years decided not to seek re-election. "I've been in the community for 24 years. The first 24 years, I dedicated myself to issues involving children. Now, my next passion has been animals," she said. As she moves on from the board, Zybrick said she plans to spend time volunteering at various animal rescue organizations, specifically Yorkie 911 Rescue on Long Island and Best Friends Animal Society in Utah. But while she looks ahead to a future of continued volunteerism, Zybrick reflected on the past 10 years of giving …
Monday, January 14, 2013
Superintendent 'hopeful' negotiation process is near conclusion.
After a year-and-a-half of negotiating, the Kinnelon Education Association (KEA) and Kinnelon Board of Education may agree on a new contract in the near future. The KEA, which includes teachers, secretaries and other district employees, has been working with an expired contract since July 2011. In September, after months of disagreement between the board and KEA on a new contract, negotiations entered a fact-finding phase. Vickie Walsh, a field representative for the New Jersey Education Association who is assisting with the negotiations on the KEA end, said the report has been completed and was reviewed by the union's negotiating team on Thursday. "The team will be recommending that the general membership ratify this agreement," Walsh …