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Education Feature Stories

Bellmawr School District Releases Restart & Recovery Plan for Education

The Road Back – Restart and Recovery Plan for Education 2020-2021 Reopening Academic Plan for the Bellmawr School District was presented at the August 5, 2020 Board of Education (BOE) meeting.

Core Beliefs & Guiding Principles for Reopening Bellmawr Schools:

  • Health and Safety: for all students and staff
  • Communication: Ongoing among all constituents
  • Learning: Uphold the integrity of instructional programs
  • Engagement: Ensure equitable access for all students
  • Wellness: Prioritize social and emotional needs and development
  • Empathy: Caring for one another

Survey Responses

Parents/Guardians were recently surveyed.

One survey question asked: “Given the current situation, what do you believe would be the best course of action for the district in September?”

Parents/Guardians also responded about having their child/ children return to school physically at half capacity following social distancing guidelines.

Parents/Guardians also responded about how they felt about the various precautions being put in place.

Screenings

  • Temperature screenings will be conducted upon entering school.
  • Isolation rooms will be utilized.
  • All visitors will be screened prior to admittance into the building.
  • Bellmawr staff will conduct self-screenings at home.

Social Distancing

  • All students are sitting at 6 feet apart with the class size from 10-12 students per class.
  • All special area classes are held in the classroom to limit the mixing of cohorts.
  • Grades K-4 lunch will be held in classrooms.
  • Grades 5-8, students will eat lunch in the cafeteria of 6-feet apart.

Face Coverings

  • Parents/Guardians have been asked to begin working on mask or face covering “endurance” so that the child/children are comfortable wearing and gradually building up the time they can tolerate wearing them.
  • There is an exemption for medical concerns.

Enhanced Cleaning Procedures

The district has comprehensive cleaning procedures for all buildings that are being expanded in response to COVID-19.

Extra Curricular Activities

Until February 1, 2021, field trips, extra curricular activities and clubs have been cancelled. There will be no assemblies.

Hybrid Schedule Option 1

Remote Learning Option 2

Special Education

First day of school for students is Tuesday, September 8, 2020. Plans are still fluid until the final number of students is ascertained.

Parents/Guardians should be prepared to pivot in the event of school closure.

To view the entire Power Point Presentation, click the image below:

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Recent News

Bellmawr BOE Appoints Lisa Young as President, Kelly Rosato as Vice-President; Letters of Interest for Vacant Seat Due Aug. 24

At their August 5, 2020 meeting, the Bellmawr Board of Education (BOE) accepted the resignation of long-time board member, Jody Mangus, who recently moved out of state.

The BOE also voted Lisa Young as president and Kelly Rosato as vice-president.

To fill the vacant seat left by Ms. Mangus, a notice has been advertised for the vacancy, which is to be filled by a resident of Bellmawr Borough, for the remainder of the term of a seat up for election in November 2021.

The appointee shall serve from the date of appointment until the reorganization meeting in January 2022 following the election, and therefore anyone interested in filling the seat beyond January 2022 must also register separately to run in the November 2021 election.

Those eligible residents of Bellmawr Borough having an interest in filling this position should send a letter providing information about themselves and summarizing their interest in the position, as well as information relative to their place of address, telephone number, and email address.

All letters must be received by 4:00 pm on Monday, August 24, 2020.

Interviews will be held by the Board of Education on Wednesday, August 26, 2020.

Interested persons will be notified as to the time if they are chosen for an interview.

The letter should be mailed or scanned to:

Mr. Patrick Doyle, School Business Administrator/Board Secretary
Bellmawr Board of Education
256 Anderson Ave
Bellmawr, NJ 08031

Email: pdoyle@bellmawrschools.org

Categories
Education Recent News

Bellmawr School District Restart & Recovery Plan to Be Presented August 5; Open Seat on the BOE?

The Bellmawr Board of Education will be holding a Special Meeting on Wednesday, August 5, 2020 at 5:00 pm in the Bell Oaks Gymnasium to present the Restart and Recovery Plan for the 2020-2021 School Year. Formal action may take place.

Public attendees will be limited to one person per household, masks will be required, and no children will be admitted to ensure the health and safety of all present.

Individual seating will be socially distant. In the event that attendance reaches the maximum allowed under the Governor’s indoor event guidelines, further admission into the building will be closed.

The meeting will be streamed remotely for those who do not attend; details will be posted on the public agenda prior to the meeting, which is available via the district website www.bellmawrschools.org

Open Seat on the BOE?

We are working to find out if there is a truth to the rumor that there will be an open seat on the BOE due to a member having recently moved. We emailed the Bellmawr School District’s Board Secretary/Business Administrator on July 29, 2020 to ask and will provide an update once that information is received.

Update:

We received the following email response from Patrick Doyle on July 30 at 11:31 a.m.

Hi Anne,

We actually just received Ms. [Jody] Mangus’ resignation letter effective 7/31/2020, so we will add it to the agenda for Wednesday’s special meeting; the board doesn’t have to accept the resignation but we’ll add it anyway just to memorialize everything.

Patrick Doyle
School Business Administrator
Bellmawr Public Schools

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Bellmawr Education News

Bellmawr School District Announces Appointment of Danielle Sochor as Next Superintendent

The Bellmawr Board of Education is proud to announce the appointment of Danielle Sochor as the school district’s next superintendent. Mrs. Sochor was unanimously approved at the regular board meeting held on April 29, 2020 and will assume the position on July 1, 2020.

Image credit: Twitter

The search began after current superintendent, Annette Castiglione, stated her intention to retire at the end of her contract, which will be on June 30, 2020.

Ms. Castiglione has dedicated herself to Bellmawr since she became superintendent in 2007, leading the district in achieving a new level of educational excellence. The district is so thankful for her years of service, and therefore knew how important it would be to pick just the right person to be the next great leader of the district, building upon the accomplishments of Superintendent Castiglione.

Step one in that process began in December, when the Board held open door community meetings in all three schools to allow parents, teachers, and community members to provide their input with regard to the qualities the next superintendent needed to possess. Additionally, a survey yielded hundreds of responses from community members all across Bellmawr. The Board was able to use both the survey and the in-person responses to create an advertisement for the position; one that would produce not only qualified candidates, but candidates that also fit the needs and personality of the district.

This advertisement brought in 47 applicants during January and February, which was gradually whittled down to four final candidates by March. It was then during the final round of interviews that it became clear that Danielle Sochor possessed all of the critical components the next superintendent of Bellmawr would need in order to lead the district into a new era. While all of the candidates were well-qualified, Mrs. Sochor rose above as the perfect fit. She joins us following her tenure of 10 years with Glassboro Public Schools, where she is currently the Chief Academic Officer for the district and is also serving as the principal for J. Harvey Rodgers Elementary School.

Prior to that, she served as a special education supervisor and curriculum coordinator with the Hainesport Board of Education.

“I am truly honored to be selected as the new superintendent of the Bellmawr School District. I look forward to working collaboratively with the school board, staff, parents, and community. I am committed to providing all students with an exceptional educational experience which will assist them with becoming productive members of an ever-changing global society,” says Mrs. Sochor.

The district will be working on a welcome video to introduce her to the Bellmawr Learning Community in the near future, as a formal in-person meet and greet is not yet permitted under the current conditions of the
Governor’s Executive Orders regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, as soon as we are legally able, we will be sure to invite students, staff, parents, and all members of the Bellmawr community to formally welcome Mrs. Sochor to our district in-person.


Post updated on May 6, 2020 at 11:40 a.m. to include Ms. Sochor’s letter.

Categories
Bellmawr Education News Recent News

Public Hearing for Bellmawr School District’s 2020-21 Budget to be Held Remotely on April 29

Given the current restrictions on public gatherings, the Bellmawr Board of Education (BOE) meeting scheduled for Wednesday, April 29, 2020 will be held remotely and will also serve as the public meeting for the 2020-2021 school year budget.

The meeting will still begin at 5:00 p.m. as advertised.

To Join the Meeting

Cisco WebEx:

Click here for instructions on how to access the meeting from a computer, tablet, or smartphone via the Bellmawr School District website.

You will be asked to provide simple identifying information before being admitted. You will then enter the meeting muted and will only see and hear the board for the duration of the meeting. At the time for public comment, if you would like to speak you may either utilize the “raise hand” option or send a message via chat to the “host” and you will be unmuted for comment.

Should an executive session be necessary, the event will remain active, but the microphone will be muted, and a message will occupy the screen until regular session resumes.

Audio Only:

Dial (408) 418-9388 toll free from any phone. The access code for the event will be 716 455 579. It may ask you for your registration or attendee ID, which you can skip and then you will be granted access.

Since the schools are closed and coming to the school to review the full budget is not possible, please email Patrick Doyle, Business Administrator, at: pdoyle@bellmawrschools.org if you would like to review the budget in its entirety, rather than just the advertised budget.

To view the advertised budget, click the image below: