Mine Hill Panther News

Welcome Back! Fall 2019

Welcome Back to School!

Hello Canfield Panthers!

Welcome Back! I want to personally thank our teachers, administrators, support staff, custodial staff, secretaries, and parents for a smooth start to the 2019-20 school year. It takes a lot of coordination and collaboration to prepare our building for the students, and this has been one of the smoothest openings I can remember.

The summer of 2019 was a busy one! We replaced the entire orange hall roof and repaired several areas of the roof over the blue hallway. The parking lot was repaired, sealed, and freshly lined. Parking spaces by the 4th-6th grade drop-off/pick up were slanted, so folks can see better and back out of those spaces safely.

In technology, we implemented a single sign on solution to help students and staff organize and securely save passwords for the hundreds of educational apps utilized throughout the school year. Younger students will be able to login to their accounts using a QR code card, saving hours of lost instructional time. Internet service to CAS will be upgraded to a dedicated fiber network that will enhance security and increase our internet upload speed from 10 mbps to 300 mbps. In addition, more access points will be added throughout the building to assure a strong WIFI signal in every classroom.

For six days in July and August, several teachers continued their training in the Learner-Active, Technology-Infused Classroom model (LATIC). This student-centered teaching strategy has transformed many of our classrooms and shifted mindsets from the tradition teacher-led classroom of the past, to one in which students take charge of their learning. It has been very successful, and we're thrilled to be in our fourth year of implementation. Also, our first PD day was focused on School Culture and Climate, and Social Emotional Character Development. Patrick Fennell of Empowerment Solutions ran the session, and will be working with our staff and students throughout the school year to enhance and improve our school climate.

The board of education's goal to transition classrooms to contemporary learning spaces that encourage student-centered learning, creativity, and collaboration is approximately two thirds complete. The staff and students are loving the various seating choices and having the option to learn in spaces best suited to their individual needs and comfort.

This year the BOE will continue to Phase II of the HVAC project, adding new unit ventilators to six classrooms in the orange hall, and the three more classrooms in the green hallway. This will certainly add to the comfort of our staff and students, particularly during the hotter months of the year.

Lastly, I am pleased to announce that in addition to Mine Hill's Lighthouse School designation, we recently learned that the district has achieved silver level certification by the Sustainable NJ initiative, and we received notification that CAS has been awarded bronze level Future Ready NJ Certification. The district will be officially recognized for both achievements at the New Jersey School Boards Association's 2019 workshop in Atlantic City, NJ.

Oh... one more thing! Please don't forget that Back to School Night is this Wednesday, September 18th. Be sure to stop by the gymnasium after the first session to participate in the first PTA meeting of the year. They do so much for our students, so please be sure to become a member to help support them. If you have some time, consider volunteering as well. Also, stop by Maschio's Food Service table for treat!

As always, my door is always open! Please reach out to me if you have any questions, concerns, accolades, or just want to chat! Have a wonderful school year, and we hope to see everyone Wednesday evening at 7pm.

Best Regards,

Mr. Nittel