Tuesday, April 23, 2013
All but two of the schools ranked higher than Chatham High are private schools or magnet academies.
Chatham High School is now ranked No. 13 in the state, according to US News & World Report rankings released Tuesday. The national ranking is No. 192. Many of Chatham's scores in the U.S. News' rankings are unchanged or improved from 2012, when Chatham High was ranked No. 7 in the state. U.S. News & World Report's rankings are based on student-to-teacher ratios, college readiness and High School Proficiency Assessment (HSPA) scores. Math scores were at 3.5 in 2012 and 2013, Language Arts scores were at 3.4 in 2012 and at 3.5 in 2013. Chatham High received a 61.3 college readiness index out of a possible 100 this year and 61.9 in 2012. Two schools in New Jersey and 15 schools in the nation received a score of 100. The publication states …
Monday, April 15, 2013
What's in the budget, who you can vote for and where you can vote.
Chatham residents are among those in 41 school districts who will go to the polls on April 16 for the annual school elections. The 2013-14 school budget, two additional questions and four seats on the Board of Education are up for a vote. Before you head out to vote, here are some things you need to know: Polls open at 2 p.m. and remain open until 9 p.m. Chatham Borough residents who are registered to vote may do so at Chatham Middle School. Chatham Township residents may do so at Chatham High School. The district has proposed a base budget of $65,131,111 for the 2013-14 school year, $55,409,234, or 85 percent of which, will be raised through local taxes. Voters can vote for or against this budget. The state allows for up to a 2 percent …
Monday, April 8, 2013
Meetings could shift to Wednesdays or Thursdays when the township committee doesn't meet.
The Board of Education of the School District of the Chathams discussed changing its meeting schedule for the 2013-14 school year so that its meetings would no longer conflict with those of the Chatham Borough Council. The meetings of the board, which usually meets at the Chatham Township Municipal Building, and of the council often occur at the same time, both semi-monthly on Mondays. Board member Richard Connors asked why the meeting night had never previously been moved from Mondays, stating that, despite occasional discussion, this has been an “ongoing issue” since he joined the board. “I honestly have no idea,” Superintendent Michael LaSusa said. “Since I’ve been in the district, it’s always been Monday night.” Connors said he …
Thursday, March 21, 2013
The public will vote on all three items on April 16.
The Board of Education approved the 2013-14 school budget with two extra questions by a unanimous vote of 7-0 Thursday evening. The vote came after two contrasting comments from Gordon Brown and Nabil Mouline. Brown spoke first, saying his last child left the district in 1988 when his taxes were $3,862 per year. Now, he said, he and his wife pay $8,134 per year. "In between, we have paid $124,717 into the school system, and no one has been in school from our family," Brown said. "I call this legalized extortion, paying a lot of money and getting very little back for it." Brown criticized the Mandarin program at Chatham Middle School and Chatham High School, and recommended those who want to learn Mandarin purchase a Rosetta Stone program …
Tuesday, February 26, 2013
Growing enrollment requires a growth in facilities and staff, and a commensurate investment in extracurricular activities.
Dr. Michael LaSusa, superintendent of the School District of the Chathams, proposed three different potential paths for the Board of Education to take in planning the 2013-14 school budget at his presentation Monday. LaSusa proposed several scenarios with tax levy increases from 2.14 to 3.41 percent, plus one option with a second question for increasing school security. Priorities: Staffing, Activities ... Priorities for the next school year include additional staff at the high school to teach math, science, social studies, English, Chinese and art for a total investment of $535,000. "Those last two don't have to be full time staff," LaSusa said. LaSusa also proposed additional extracurricular activities at both Chatham High School and …
Monday, February 25, 2013
Superintendent Michael LaSusa proposed three different paths for the upcoming school budget.
Dr. Michael LaSusa, superintendent of the School District of the Chathams, proposed three different potential paths for the Board of Education to take in planning the 2013-14 school budget, including putting a second question to the voters for enhancements to school security. His proposed scenarios call for a budget increase of between 2.14 percent to 3.41 percent, or allow the Board of Education to propose a different path. The board will select a budget plan and vote on it on March 11 following another Open Finance Committee meeting. LaSusa said the district qualifies for a health care adjustment over the 2 percent state tax levy cap, plus banked cap from the last three years which cannot be touched until the full health care allowance …
Monday, October 22, 2012
Socio-emotional and academic success, equity of opportunity included in the principles.
The Board of Education unanimously approved a set of guiding principles, meant to provide a uniform long-term set of goals by which to measure changes in curriculum and development, at their meeting Monday. Superintendent Dr. Michael LaSusa introduced four guiding principles. He said the principles do not necessarily represent a change from past policies. "The hope is that some of these broad beliefs that we have as a school district ... will inform some of the more specific plans and goals that we have on a year-to-year basis," LaSusa said. The principles include a preamble which implies a goal of operating the district as a "premier educational institution." The complete text of the principles are: The School District of the Chathams, …
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Dr. Michael LaSusa presented the staff members to the Board of Education Monday.
Twenty-two staff members from the School District of the Chathams made tenure at the start of the 2012-13 school year. Superintendent Dr. Michael LaSusa introduced the teachers, staff members and their positions. He gave a special recognition to Stephanie Coviello. "I embarass Stephanie every time practically we're in an audience like this, [by saying] a former student of mine," LaSusa said. "She's the only one on the list. Those who made tenure this year are: Business Office at the School District of the Chathams Maintenance Milton Avenue School Washington Avenue School Lafayette Avenue School Chatham Middle School Chatham High School
Tuesday, October 9, 2012
Meetings would likely be videotaped and broadcast at a later time.
Board of Education President Thomas K. Belding said he and Superintendent Dr. Michael LaSusa met with Chatham Borough officials to discuss the possibility of recording and broadcasting board meetings. The school and municipal officials "discussed a number of possibilities for shared service agreements and/or shared resources," Belding said. Chatham Borough Mayor Bruce Harris, Administrator Robert Falzarano and Council Member Gerald Helfrich, the latter of whom is an alumnus of the Board of Education, said they had the ability to broadcast DVDs of meetings onto their public access channel, Belding said. Board Member Al Burgunder asked whether the BOE would have to move their meetings from the Chatham Township Municipal Building, where the …
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Superintendent Dr. Michael LaSusa said contracts have been re-issued to reflect change.
The School District of the Chathams is in a good position to implement changes to state-mandated teacher evaluation reforms, Superintendent Dr. Michael LaSusa said. Most facets of the new law, called the Teacher Effectiveness and Accountability for the Children of New Jersey (TEACHNJ) Act, went into effect almost immediately after Gov. Chris Christie signed it in August. Other parts of the law go into effect over the course of the 2012-13 school year. "Last year the state had approved four different models" for teacher evaluations, LaSusa said, "including the Charlotte Danielson model, which is a pretty well-known one." The Charlotte Danielson Framework for Teaching spells out the skills and competencies that outstanding teachers need in …