Message from the Superintendent
It is my pleasure to present the May edition of the Lower Moreland Township School District Superintendent’s Newsletter. I hope this letter finds you and your family healthy and well.
This week we honor all teachers during National Teacher Appreciation Week. On behalf of LMTSD and the Board of School Directors, we thank all LMTSD teachers and staff for their dedication, compassion and commitment to our students. It is in these continued challenging times that we recognize and appreciate how our teachers play such a pivotal role in our students’ lives.
During the month of May, the district celebrates Asian American and Pacific Islander and Jewish American Heritage Month. The month of May is also Mental Health Awareness Month. In addition to recognizing and celebrating our diverse community and all families attending our schools, it is also important that all of us continue to maintain good mental health. Along with contacting our school counselors for any assistance your child may need, please click here if you or your child is in need of immediate help.
Lastly, please be reminded that many end-of-year celebrations, concerts and performances take place in May. We hope to see you at these events this month.
Scott Davidheiser, Ed.D.
Pine Road's Multicultural Night was held on May 2
LMHS was included on U.S. News and World Report's Ranking of Best High Schools
Click here to see LMHS' entry on the Best High School's list
LMHS was included on U.S. News and World Report's Ranking of Best High Schools
Business Office (Mark McGuinn, Business Manager)
The State of Pennsylvania requires all school districts to prepare budgets for their General Fund which account for the day-to-day operations of the school district. Budgets must be approved by June 30 for the fiscal year beginning July 1, and ending June 30 the subsequent year. For the Lower Moreland Township School District, the budget process begins in September of the preceding year when the Act 1 index is announced. This index is set by the State and denotes a limit a district can raise local real estate taxes. For the 2022/23 budget year, this index is 3.4%. In keeping with the practice of staying at or below the Act 1 index, and in accordance with a resolution passed by the Board of School Directors, the District cannot raise taxes beyond the 3.4% Act 1 index. At the April School Board Meeting, the Board of School Directors approved a preliminary budget that showed a preliminary tax increase of 3.01%. Details of that presentation can be found at https://www.lmtsd.org/Page/13641. The District will continue to endeavor to bring the proposed increase down and be as fiscally prudent as possible. The final budget is scheduled to be adopted In June of 2022.
The Students Against Melanoma Club donated 75 Sun Safety Care Kits to the Laural House
The National Honor Society chapter of LMHS resumed its annual blood drive (after a 3-year hiatus due to the Covid pandemic) on April 25th
Curriculum and Instruction (Julien Drennan, Director of Curriculum, Instruction, and Prof. Dev.)
At the May work session of the Board of School Directors, updates were provided on two core projects related to Curriculum and Instruction. The first was an overview of the Comprehensive Plan. Chapter 4 requires the development of a comprehensive plan every three years. The work of the Comprehensive Planning Committee culminated with the identification of three goal areas focused on continued improvement in academics and instruction. They include:
1. 60% of English Learners who have been enrolled for a full academic year will meet the interim growth target or attainment level on or ahead of time as assessed by WIDA ACCESS.
2. By the end of the comprehensive plan, all instructional areas in which students' growth is historically low or is currently not meeting the statewide growth standard will be audited for standards alignment, availability of appropriate interventions, and rigorous instructional practices.
3. 100% of students will meet the growth measure, one year's growth in one year's time, as determined by benchmark assessments during the academic year.
The Comprehensive Plan will be submitted to PDE following School Board approval. The plan will be in place from 2022-2025.
The second update focused on the work completed by committees for the renewal of curriculum in the areas of Mathematics, World Language, Library/Technology, and Science. Mathematics and World Language have both completed year one of the process, which includes the creation of a vision statement and the completion of a needs assessment. Each department established focus areas that will frame their curricular development and materials selection in year two. The focus areas moving forward are as follows:
Mathematics: Curriculum development including common language, number sense, and vocabulary and meeting the needs of diverse learners
World Language: The exploration of dual enrollment opportunities, new resources, and curricular organization
The Library/Technology and Science Departments completed year two of the renewal process. Included in the work was a review of existing resources and the recommendation of the adoption of new materials. These materials include:
Grades 6-8: Inspire Science, McGraw Hill
Biology: Miller & Levine Biology, SAVVAS and Campbell Biology: Concepts and Connections, SAVVAS
Chemistry: Inspire Chemistry, McGraw Hill
Physics: Conceptual Physics, SAVVAS
Items recommended for adoption and purchase in the area of Library/Technology include: 6 year licenses for Kodable and FabMaker (Pine Road), Lego Robotics Kits (Murray Avenue), Library Collection and Makerspace updates (Murray Avenue), and cameras for digital technology classes (LMHS).
Information on curriculum renewal and comprehensive planning can be found on the Director of Curriculum and Instruction's webpage and updates will continue to be posted in the future.
Kristen Hutchinson has won the 2022 Middle School PE Teacher of the Year Award given by the Southeastern District of SHAPE PA
LMTSD was recognized as one of 2022's Best Communities for Music Education by the NAMM Foundation
Human Resources/Public Relations (Cheryl Galdo, Esq., Dir. of HR/PR)
In April, the Future Business Leaders of America Club sent 9 students to compete in the Future Business Leaders of America's (FBLA) State Leadership Conference. Varun Singh, Grade 11 placed 10th in Cyber Security, Chelsea Cohen and Alyssa Gottesman placed 8th in Public Service Announcements, and Phillip Duarte placed 4th in Coding and Programming. Representing the State of Pennsylvania, Phillip will be competing at the national level in Chicago from June 29-July 2. Phillip is the first student in Lower Moreland history to compete at the national level in FBLA. Congratulations to all our competitors and good luck to Phillip in his future competitions.
On Saturday, April 9, Lower Moreland High School and Bryn Athyn College hosted the Annual Out of the Darkness Suicide Prevention Walk. The event raised over $15,000.00 to fund Education programs, Research, Advocacy for Public Policy, and support for those affected by suicide. Close to 200 students and residents participated. Author and Psychologist Pax Tandon was the keynote speaker, sharing her story and offering a path to mindfulness. Here is a link to a Thank You Video to those who helped with the Walk.
Technology (Jason Hilt, Ed.D., Director of Technology)
The Technology Department supports information technology systems and instructional technology programs and practices in the district. Each month, we highlight how our students and teachers engage in 21st Century learning activities. We also share updates on new initiatives and tips and tricks related to devices and technology tools used in the district.
Mrs. Quinn-Maxwell’s ninth-grade health students were tasked with evaluating how our world is a more interesting place with each of us in it. They utilized Canva, an online design and publishing tool, to create a social media graphic representing their view of what Unity in Diversity means to them and how we as a community can benefit from our diversity. A few examples of student work are pictured below.
Eighth-grade students at Murray Avenue worked collaboratively to create bottle rockets that would successfully launch from a platform and land with the assistance of a parachute. Check out the process and some of their results in this month’s tech video: https://youtu.be/mKQlhkCUwVA
9th Grade Students Art Work Created Using Canva
Student Services (Frank Giordano, Director of Special Education and Student Services)
Year two of the Lower Moreland Township School District Unified Track Team is underway and we would like to congratulate our athletes on their recent participation in two meets. On April 25, they participated in a meet here at Lower Moreland, and, on May 3, they participated in a meet at Springfield Township School District. Next up is the Regional Meet, also at Springfield Township on May 19 at 3:30 PM. We wish all of our athletes the best of luck!
Lower Moreland Township School District