WORK SESSION April 14, 2022 7:00 p.m.
BOARD MEETING April 28, 2022 7:00 p.m.
(The April 28th meeting is the Public Hearing for the 2022-2023 Budget.)
These Board meetings are open to the public. There are no limits to the number of
people who may attend in person, and masks are optional.
Board meetings will continue to be live-streamed as well,
but there will be no call-in comments or questions.
Presentations from Recent Board Meetings:
GREETINGS from the SUPERINTENDENT!
In 2019, the Haddonfield Board of Education developed an action team including a broad representation of our schools and community to develop goals for the Long-range Strategic Plan (LRSP). After much work, this team wrote three LRSP goals: Contemporary Teaching and Learning, Social-Emotional Skills and Support, and Cultural Responsiveness and Sustainability.
At this time, I would like to share the progress made on the goal of Cultural Responsiveness and Sustainability.
One of the committee’s first ideas was to form an Equity Council to provide guidance that will enable the district to successfully adopt culturally responsive practices. This 34-person council, led by Director of Special Education Dr. Carmen Henderson, includes Board of Education members, administrators, staff, and community members who are charged with directing professional learning, assisting with curriculum development, and positively affecting other segments of our school and community life.
In June 2021, the Equity Council decided to break up into subcommittees for the 2021-22 school year to ensure that their work would reach all stakeholders. With a focus on cultural justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion, the council developed six subcommittees:
- Equity in Curriculum and Libraries
- Professional Learning
- Community Outreach
- Student Voice and Leadership
- Racial Reconciliation
- Policy and Best Practices
For example, the subcommittee focused on curriculum and libraries has taken time to audit our district’s curriculum and libraries to make sure that the district is inclusive, honest, and accurate with educational content, and that it represents people of diverse identities.
No school district exists in a vacuum. One essential characteristic of any successful school program is a productive collaboration with families and communities. The Community Outreach subcommittee has been developing plans and strategies to build bridges between the schools and the community at large, to drive conversation and learning beyond our “bubbles,” and to foster pride in diversity, establishing partnerships with the PTA, HEA, Haddonfield Historical Society, student groups, Friends of the Library, Mabel Kay, borough commissioners, the Human Relations Committee, and more.
Ultimately the Equity Council will include students, but at this time student voice comes from school-based student groups that already exist. Supporting these clubs and activities will empower students to use their own voices to be active advocates in issues of equity.
A pivotal element to supporting Cultural Responsiveness and Sustainability is understanding our past and current culture. To do this effectively, we must reconcile what we believe our culture may be with an honest look at the experiences of marginalized individuals and groups. By gathering data and information on those experiences, we will be able to identify patterns in our past and present so we can focus on what and how we must improve.
Along with looking at climate and culture within our buildings, it is imperative that we also address systems in place. An Equity Council subcommittee is reviewing policies related to equity, diversity, and inclusion, and more emphasis will be placed on staff education on these policies, how they impact us, and how they are applied.
The work being done by the Equity Council is crucial to making our schools and community better for everyone. This is not an easy lift. It often requires complex and uncomfortable conversations, so I would like to thank those who volunteer their time to make sure those conversations happen, and who help us to move forward with this goal.
Superintendent of Schools
New Transition Program Proposed for 2022-23
At the March 14th Board meeting, Director of Special Education Dr. Carmen Henderson introduced a proposal for a new TIP (Transition Instructional Program). This program would be designed for Haddonfield learners ages 18-21 with developmental or multiple disabilities. These students have finished 12th grade and have satisfied all graduation requirements, but have not officially received their diplomas because they are eligible until age 21.
Up until now, an outside organization has managed the educational program for Haddonfield students in this group. Generally, students were placed in pre-established job sites.
"In the past, our students have been placed in jobs with no say and no application or interview process," said Henderson. "The unintended message in this approach is that they are not capable of finding a job, and that they are passive participants rather than active learners."
Unlike other 18-21 programs in our area, Haddonfield School District’s Transition Instructional Program – in partnership with Camden County College Garden State Pathways Post Secondary Transition Program – puts learners in the lead. From running their own Dream Team meetings, to pursuing their own internships, our learners are given the agency and support they need to pursue their goals for adulthood.
Read Dr. Henderson's entire presentation here. The proposed TIP will be voted on at the April 28th Board meeting.
You're Invited to the Haddonfield Athletic Hall of Fame Dinner
The Haddonfield Memorial High School Athletic Hall of Fame committee will hold its 2022 induction ceremony and dinner on Saturday, April 30 at the Tavistock Country Club. The event begins with cocktails at 6:00 p.m. followed by dinner and ceremony at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are $70.00 per person, and attendees may purchase program ads. Funds support the Athletic Hall of Fame program.
The 2022 Class of Inductees are:
David Krier, Class of 1971 (posthumously)
Paul Wiedeman, Class of 1989
Ryan Roberts, Class of 1998
George S. Wilkinson III, Class of 1998
Kristina Keegan Bonesteel, Class of 2003
Kara (Hyde) Swift, Class of 2003
Julie Sobolewski, Class of 2004
Kyle Turner, Class of 2004
Vanessa Wright, Class of 2006
Brian Zoubek, Class of 2006
Haddonfield Staff Presented at RULER Conference
Dr. Gino Priolo (Assistant Superintendent), Deena O'Connor (HSD speech language pathologist) and Dr. Kristin Leren (school psychologist) presented at the annual RULER conference March 9-10, 2022. The conference was attended by 1,500 people from 33 states and 11 countries. Marc Brackett, the founder of RULER, led the conference along with his colleagues from the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence.
RULER is a systemic approach to SEL developed at Yale's Center for Emotional Intelligence. RULER aims to infuse the principles of emotional intelligence into the immune system of preK to 12 schools, informing how leaders lead, teachers teach, students learn, and families support students. RULER stands for the five skills of emotional intelligence: recognizing, understanding, labeling, expressing and regulating.
This year, Haddonfield was invited to make a presentation about the Phase 2 RULER Implementation. The topic was "How to Implement RULER When Things Don't Go According to Plan." Priolo, O'Connor, and Leren shared how we diverged from the original Phase 2 Implementation plan once we recognized our teachers' emotions.
The solution was to differentiate, to create a new plan for each school that met our teachers where they were. The result has been that, although we may not all be at a full Phase 2, we are all making small changes that are leading to greater emotional well-being for our district.
Here is the link to their Presentation Slides
LRFP Visioning Sessions Held
As announced at Board meetings in both February and March, the district is holding "visioning sessions" with people from all facets of the school district community to express their opinions about the Long-Range Facilities Plan (LRFP). Beginning Monday, March 28th, three representatives of the architectural firm LAN Associates have met with different staff and student groups, sharing ideas, wants, and needs. Additional meetings will be scheduled to elicit input from parents and community members as well.
Photo below: HMS students shared their opinions at a visioning session. You may access the LRFP webpage to learn more.
First-Ever National Junior Honor Society at HMS
Several years ago, principal Tracy Ann Matozzo petitioned the Board to allow the middle school to initiate a student recognition program that better suited Haddonfield's mission statement and goals. She and assistant principal Karen Russo chose the National Junior Honor Society because it acknowledges service, leadership, commitment, discipline, and integrity rather than just GPA.
On Tuesday, March 22nd, HMS honored the inaugural members of the NJHS in a ceremony organized by their advisor, Ana Sanchez. The students chose social studies teacher Travis Thomas as the Keynote speaker.
Students are pictured below during their induction ceremony.
Don't Miss "Annie Jr." at HMS
Our middle school students are excited to be back performing musical theatre at HMS and hope everyone will come out to see "Annie Jr." April 7th and 8th at 7:30 p.m. in the HMS auditorium. Tickets are $8.00.
While it's been a Hard Knock Life these past few years, we still know The Sun'll Come Out Tomorrow! See you there!
Senior Art Show and NAHS Reception a Success
Last weekend, HMHS senior art was on display at the Markeim Arts Center.
On Friday, AP Art students showed their work to our eighth-grade artists.
On Sunday at 3:00 p.m., juniors and seniors were inducted into the National Art Honor Society, and a reception was held from 3:30-5:00 p.m. Please follow @haddonfieldmemorialart on Instagram for pictures of the entire show and showcased artists. Congratulations to all!
Haddonfield Hosted Model UN
On March 26th, Haddonfield hosted the 19th annual Haddonfield Model United Nations with close to 200 students from 11 South Jersey schools.
HSD Summer Learning Enrichment Programs Announced Last Friday
Our district K12 summer learning enrichment program catalog was published March 25th. Space is limited – first come, first served – so take a look at the offerings soon.
Central Students Learn Programming with BeeBots
Central first- and second-graders have been working with librarian Amy Abella and her BeeBots. Beebots are small bee-shaped robots that move in response to simple programming. The students must clear the previous directions, set the new / correct instructions, and judge their success by whether the BeeBot sticks to a predetermined path. These exercises are certainly fun, but they also require respecting both the BeeBot and one's partner, following directions, and creating a precise algorithm.
Photo below: Grade 2 students observe their BeeBot's progress.
Lizzy Students Participated in Science Olympiad
Science Olympiad is a club that allows students to explore various STEM activities while practicing collaboration, problem solving, and critical thinking skills. Students attended after-school meetings to learn rules and regulations and to practice each of the 13 events. Many students also collaborated outside of school hours to practice and construct devices at home.
This year, Lizzy's Science Olympiad was led by coaches Carlyn Hubert and Anh Thu Nguyen. A record high of about sixty students in grades 4-5 competed at the school tournament on Friday, March 11th. The tournament’s events are both challenging and motivating, and are well-balanced between various science disciplines including biology, earth science, chemistry, and physics. Science Olympians competed across 13 events, including Straw Egg Drop, Water Rockets, Gummy Bear Launcher, Barge Building, and Calculator Contest. It was a busy but exciting and fun night! We are very proud of all of our participating members for their hard work, creativity, and dedication this year.
ALL Third-Grade Students took Haddonfield History Challenge
Over the course of two sessions, each third-grade student in the district experienced the “Haddonfield History Challenge,” presented by two representatives of Visualizing the Past, Shamele Jordon and Muneerah Higgs.
Jordon and Higgs are familiar faces in the Haddonfield School District, having hosted a day-long field trip for the entire administrative staff last summer sharing the little-known but rich history of African Americans in Haddonfield as well as the connection between Haddonfield and Lawnside.
To begin sharing information with the third graders, Jordon and Higgs showed and talked about seven postcards via Zoom, each one illustrating a person or place of importance, including:
Map of The Point - historically African American area of town
Mrs. Marvel T. Dansbury - first African American teacher to teach black and white students
Primas Marsh - enslaved by Elizabeth Haddon and John Estaugh
Attee Leeman - the first African American landowner and fireman
Mount Pisgah African Methodist Episcopal church
Mount Olivet Baptist church
School #4 - the first school built for African Americans
On their second visit, this time in person, Jordon and Higgs held The Point Games using Kahoot, an online multiple-choice game, and handed out awards for the best answers. (Photo below with Tatem students.)
“The students were amazing,” said Jordon. “Many of them said they had no idea that Haddonfield had an African American history, and they were excited to learn more about it. Their favorite postcard told about the teacher, Mrs. Dansbury, but they were interested in everything.”
MARCH MADNESS: WELLNESS WEDNESDAYS at HMS
Staff, students and parents joined forces to produce fun and healthy activities and educational experiences for the entire HMS community on Wednesdays during the month of March.
“A signature component of HMS, over the years, has been a Wellness Day,” said principal Tracy Ann Matozzo. “In looking to reconfigure our focus, while acknowledging that March is a very long month, coupled with a transition from COVID protocols, HMS developed ‘March Madness: Wellness Wednesdays.’”
They began with a survey asking everyone to define “wellness.” The results varied broadly and addressed physical, mental and emotional wellness. Some examples of the wellness activities were:
- a Wellness Walk at 3:00 p.m.
- music played between classes
- mindful lunches with parent Courtney Shulnick
- "Chat and Chews" featuring activities with librarian Amy Abella
- a discussion about body image in health classes with parent Sue McCarroll
- circuit training with parent Casey Price and GXP Athletics (photo below)
- classroom door-decorating to build community
On the final Wellness Wednesday, March 30th, the entire school community experienced a screen-free day. Staff and students refrained from using laptops, smart phones and Promethean boards for the entire academic day in an effort to reduce stress.
“We will assess the overall experience in the near future,” said Matozzo. “It is integral to the development of a ‘we’ mentality that we assess and highlight each facet of our community as we strive to cultivate wellness.”
“CINDERELLA” Wowed Audiences at HMHS
The HMHS Drama Club presented Rodgers and Hammertein’s “Cinderella” March 18, 19, 20, 25 and 26, and the community response has been enthusiastic.
Simply put, the HMHS Drama Club students, on and off stage, outdid themselves. Over and over, Drama Club advisor and “Cinderella” director Matthew DiDonato heard the comment, “I can't believe this is a high school production."
“These students have really done something tremendous over the past five months," said DiDonato. “The sheer number of hours they have put in is unparalleled, and their hard work resulted in a show that left the community raving. We were oversold the second weekend because word of mouth had spread about how outstanding the show was. I am very proud of the students and of all of the production staff members.”
Congratulations to all who contributed to this spectacular production!
Safely Dispose of Hazardous and E Waste
This Earth Day season, consider dropping off any hazardous waste materials at Collingswood Public Works on Saturday, April 23rd. See details here.
E waste - All kinds of electronic devices and other metal-containing items can be dropped off at Magnum Recycling in Pennsauken. Details can be found here.
District Employment Opportunities
FACULTY & STAFF
Please review the positions and apply on our website. Applicants must have an active certification or sub certification before applying.
In the Loop
Keep up with current information, news and photos.
Read the Haddonfield Sun story about the HMHS student-led event in support of Ukraine.
District Twitter: @HaddonSchools
District Facebook: @HaddonfieldSchoolDistrict
New pages on website:
Upcoming Book Fairs:
HMS book fair takes place at Inkwood Books, April 24 - 30
Don't forget to:
- Read the latest @HSD Health newsletter.
- Look for your school's Twitter feed.
- Your student's team or club may also tweet.
- Our PTAs have a presence on Facebook and/or Twitter.