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.


  • 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:

Bellmawr Education News

Bellmawr BOE to Vote Wednesday on Employment Contract for New Superintendent

The Bellmawr Board of Education (BOE) is set to vote on the employment contract for the district’s new superintendent on Wednesday, April 29, 2020.

The meeting will be held remotely due to current restrictions on public gatherings.

According to the meeting agenda that has been uploaded on the district’s website, the BOE will be voting on the hire of Danielle Sochor as Superintendent effective July 1, 2020-June 23, 2023.

  • For the 2020-2021 school year, Ms. Sochor’s salary will be $155,200.00.
  • For the 2021-2022 school year, Ms. Sochor’s salary will be $158,304.00.
  • For the 2022-2023 school year, Ms. Sochor’s salary will be $161,471.00.

Ms. Sochor is the principal of Rodgers School in Glassboro. On her principal’s page, she wrote: “I am a proud graduate of Rutgers University, NJ. I obtained a Master’s Degree in Special Education from Rider University and completed my administrative course work at Rider University. For the past 18 years, I have dedicated my career in education to inspiring and motivating students, supporting and encouraging teachers, and communicating openly with parents.”

Ms. Sochor will replace Annette Castiglione, who has been the district’s superintendent since 2007 and will be retiring.

Ms. Castiglione was named 2018 Camden County Superintendent of the year.

In June, 2017, the Early Childhood Center was dedicated in Ms. Castiglione’s honor.

For the period of July 1, 2019 through June 30, 2020, Mrs. Castiglione’s salary is $171,360.

To view the meeting agenda, click the image below:

To view the terms of the superintendent’s employment contract, click the image below:

Posted: April 27, 2020 at 3:20 p.m. Updated 3:25 p.m.

Bellmawr Community Calendar Feature Stories News Recent News

Bellmawr School District’s 6th Annual Multicultural Fair Set for April 17 at Bell Oaks

The Bellmawr Public School District is pleased to announce that the 6th Annual Multicultural Fair will take place in the Bell Oaks All Purpose Room on Wednesday, April 17, 2019 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

After five successful years, more entertainment has been added to this year’s event.

This year, the Bell Oaks Chorale, 4th Grade Choir, The Bell Oaks Drum Ensemble, and a student cultural dance performance will be featured.

Other highlights include table displays that will spotlight the various countries represented by the families in our community. Participants will display pictures, artifacts, and serve samples of their country’s cuisine.

This year the Bellmawr Learning Community PTO will represent the United States of America and will provide Luciano’s pizza.

Wonderful donations of beverages from Wawa and delicious water ice from Cabana Water Ice Co. will also be served.

Bellmawr is home to over 11,000 residents of various nationalities and ethnicities. This event was created to celebrate the diversity represented in our schools and embrace our cultural differences.

Bellmawr Education Feature Stories News Recent News

Bellmawr Schools Brimming With Activity

Fall 2018

Dear Bellmawr Learning Community Member:

It’s hard to believe that first marking period has ended and we are heading into the holiday season. It’s been a successful quarter to date with many positive events and activities for our families and our students.

The Annette Castiglione Early Childhood Center is brimming with activity. We are pleased that we were able to open one more classroom this September for a total of 10 classes for our three and four-year-olds. Our teachers, students and families work well with our new Master Teacher, Eva Kovacs. She loves our children and knows so much about early childhood development. We welcome Andrea Pfeiffer, our new social worker, who has spent her early days visiting our families and getting to know our students and their families.

The staff of the Bellmawr Park Elementary School welcomed 3rd and 4th grade students and their teachers this September when they had to be moved out of the Burke School due to fire damage.

The Dragons and Penguins have done a great job of collaborating and cooperating with one another. They sure know how to make lemonade from lemons.

The kindergarten, first and second grade Burke students surely miss their classmates but are doing well holding down the fort of the newer portion of the Burke School.

We welcome Mr. Reilly, our new guidance counselor for the Burke School. He comes to us with a wealth of varied experiences and has hit the ground running, getting to know our staff and students.

We are hoping that contractors are responsive to the bids we issued for the repairs that must be done at the EM Burke School. We didn’t expect for this to take as long as it has to begin, but we are at the mercy of the process. The rooms affected by the fire will look very different once construction is completed.

We do not expect to return to that school this academic year.

Parents, teachers, Board members and administrators came together this fall to explore how we sponsor field trips. All field trip requests have been submitted to the Board of Education for their approval at the November Board meeting, which is Wednesday, November 28, 2018 at 6:00 p.m.

Perhaps you can join us to learn about what’s going on in our learning community.

We will have a chrome book demonstration at the meeting as our 2nd-4th grade students use them during their learning in the day. If you’re not able to attend the meeting I urge you to visit our web site to keep abreast of what’s happening around the district and in the schools.

So many exciting activities are planned for our middle school students. Mr. Farinelli has a book club for 7th and 8th grade students.

We’ve begun trips for 8th grade students to local colleges and high schools. Our student mentors, mediators and peer mentors are working with their classmates to increase communication and decrease social and academic problems.

There are so many extracurricular activities available to students – there’s something for everyone-sports, chess club, gaming club, chorale, and band to name a few.

Our new Academic Lab period provides a time for enrichment and remediation to students who need it. Ask your child(ren) about what they are doing and learning during that time.

We have had many additions to our staff this year with Mr. Di Bartolo is on sabbatical and Ms. Arrizon retired from teaching Spanish. Mr. Farinelli has worked diligently to find a suitable replacement Spanish teacher. We welcome Ms. Delgado the day we return from Thanksgiving break. I know you’ll give her a warm Bellmawr welcome.

Ms. Shivers is having fun teaching Spanish to our elementary students, a first in Bellmawr, and from what I can tell she is having a good deal of success with our youngest students.

I hope you will enjoy the holiday break and I look forward to our continued work together!

Annette Castiglione, Superintendent

Bellmawr Feature Stories News Recent News

Architect Presents E.M. Burke Classroom Renovation & Restoration Project

On November 12, there was a Special Meeting of the Bellmawr Board of Education (BOE) for the purpose of reviewing the floor plan and bid specifications for the damages that E.M. Burke Elementary School sustained due to a July 3, 2018 fire.

The district’s architect, Bob Garrison, made a presentation to the BOE which included fire damage photos and a scope of work.

E.M. Burke Restoration Renovation
All photos by Garrison Architects
E.M. Burke Restoration Renovation

Project Scope:

  • Restoration of the original eight classrooms damaged by lightning and fire
  • Demolition of limited interior walls, doors, ceilings, HVAC equipment, fixtures and finishes throughout the first and second floors
  • Renovated areas will receive new doors and frames, hardware, floor and wall finishes, casework and built-in cabinets, lay-in ceilings and LED lighting, display boards, HVAC equipment and systems as well as electrical and fire alarm systems.
  • Renovation of two existing toilet rooms including expansion of the boy’s toilet room, new plumbing fixtures and piping, toilet accessories, lay-in ceilings, lighting and new ceramic tile finishes
  • Limited new finishes and air conditioning in the basement

Sealed bids are due by November 27, 2018 and the project is expected to be completed by July, 2019. 

E.M. Burke Restoration Renovation

To view the full presentation, click the image below.

E.M. Burke Restoration and Renovation Project