SOMSD town hall meeting draws large crowd

Community gathers to discuss bias and insensitivity in the school system, brainstorm solutions

SOMSD town hall meeting draws large crowd

MAPLEWOOD, NJ — Hundreds of South Orange and Maplewood residents made it clear during a March 29 town hall meeting that they want to see changes within the school district to prevent incidents involving race and religion like those seen in recent weeks at the schools, and they want to start by focusing on curriculum. […]

SOMA BOE labors against $515K deficit

BOE chops elementary Spanish, vows to ‘reimagine’ it

SOMA BOE labors against $515K deficit

SOUTH ORANGE / MAPLEWOOD, NJ — The South Orange-Maplewood Board of Education approved the proposed preliminary budget for the 2017-18 school year, leaving a more than $500,000 shortfall for the school district to make up, despite the fact that taxes will increase by 3.56 percent and the banked cap from the 2014-15 school year will […]

SOMSD to hold town hall on equity and inclusion

SOUTH ORANGE / MAPLEWOOD, NJ — The South Orange-Maplewood School District will hold a town hall on equity and inclusion, focusing on recent events within the district and the many responses, on Wednesday, March 29, from 7 to 9 p.m. in the Columbia High School Cafeteria, 17 Parker Ave. in Maplewood. Superintendent of Schools John […]

Racism and insensitivity in our schools

Threats to lynch black people, swastikas, slave auction posters appear in SOMSD buildings

SOUTH ORANGE / MAPLEWOOD, NJ — It has been a rough couple of weeks for the South Orange-Maplewood School District in regard to tolerance and cultural competency. Last week, South Orange Middle School reported two incidents of racist graffiti scrawled in bathrooms. The first incident, using the N-word, said that “Naughty (blacks) Get Lynched”; while […]

BOE to vote on SOMA schools budget

SOUTH ORANGE / MAPLEWOOD, NJ — The South Orange-Maplewood School District released the following press release: “On March 7, 2017, the district’s proposed budget for the 2017-2018 school year was presented to the Board of Education and the community. The proposed budget was updated for the March 13, 2017, community forum, upon receiving information that […]

District’s strategic plan gets under way

BOE passes strategic direction and action plan in final 2016 meeting, remains open to feedback

SOUTH ORANGE / MAPLEWOOD, NJ — The process to implement the South Orange-Maplewood School District’s strategic plan is under way following the Board of Education’s 8-1 vote — with board member Johanna Wright voting nay — to pass a resolution approving the plan’s strategic direction and action plan during its Dec. 19 meeting. Residents are […]

District gathers SOMA’s ideas, feedback

Two towns share thoughts at second education summit, discuss next steps in strategic action plan

SOUTH ORANGE / MAPLEWOOD, NJ — The South Orange-Maplewood School District held a second education summit at Columbia High School on Dec. 6 in order to garner feedback from parents, teachers and students as to how the deliverables of its proposed action plan should be prioritized if the Board of Education votes to approve the […]

School district unveils strategic action plan

Board applauds work put into developing action plan

MAPLEWOOD / SOUTH ORANGE, NJ — The majority of the Nov. 21 special meeting of the South Orange-Maplewood Board of Education was spent presenting the district’s new strategic action plan. The plan was formed by nine committees — each focused on one strategy — that met for approximately nine months to flesh out the actions […]

Amid bullying scandal, district hires new baseball coach

Boosters president criticizes baseball coach-hiring process

SOUTH ORANGE / MAPLEWOOD, NJ — The South Orange-Maplewood Board of Education unanimously approved the hiring of James Whalen as the new head baseball coach for Columbia High School during its Nov. 16 meeting, putting an end to months of speculation that coach Joe Fischetti would not be rehired amid allegations he and his coaching […]

SOMSD wins sustainability award for collaboration with Maplewood Green Team

EWING, NJ — Sustainable Jersey for Schools recently announced the recipients of the 2016 Sustainability Champion award, the Green Team Collaboration award and the Sustainability Makes $ense award. This year, three schools in Atlantic County — Reeds Road Elementary School, Alder Avenue Middle School and Egg Harbor Township High School — received the Sustainability Champion […]