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Superintendent Kicks Off New School Year

Hundreds of district employees come to the high school for a 'welcome back' assembly

In what was equal parts pep rally and group hug, Schools Superintendent Daniel Simon addressed hundreds of district teachers, administrators, bus drivers and support staff Tuesday to kick off the new school year.

All district employees were bussed into the high school for a “Welcome Back” session hosted by the new superintendent – the first time such an event had been held in more than a decade, Simon said.

Although the first day for students is Wednesday, teachers reported to work Tuesday.

Simon, who seemed intent on recognizing everyone in the packed high school gymnasium by name during the hour-long assembly, thanked scads of teachers, custodians, union officials and paraprofessionals for a variety of accomplishments or contributions to the upcoming school year.

recognized both personal and professional accomplishments of district employees from last year’s teachers of the year to those employees who had gotten engaged, married or had children in the past year. Each mention of a name garnered applause from the crowd.

“A really good vibe for this year,’’ Simon said prior to the assembly. “We’ve got a really good energy.’’

Wall Township Education Association President Bill Chiesi also addressed the crowd, expressing hope and anticipation for the upcoming year, as did Curriculum Director MaryJane Garibay and technology Director Jeff Janover.

Ending the assembly with a few ABCs of his own, Simon listed “Accountibility,’’ “Boldness,’’ “Collaboration,’’ “Dedication,’’ “Effort’’ and “Focus,’’ as the top priorities for all employees as they embark on a new school year.

Michael Ferrell September 04, 2012 at 05:03 PM
Welcome aboard, Mr. SImon! We look forward to openness, community involved and innovation. Your "ABC's" hopefully will propagate out beyond the school walls to the children, parents and rest of the community.
bill sandow September 04, 2012 at 07:25 PM
Great to read my old school still has much spirit!
Fred Grygiel September 04, 2012 at 10:58 PM
Hopefully this "welcome back assembly" is just the first step in building a strong collaborative atmosphere in Wall that will encourage candid sharing of information and ideas among parents, citizens and the school district. In addition, it should also be a signal to the BOE that the community is an equal partner in the education of the children by both providing sufficient funding and deserving full involvement in the development and implementation of educational initiatives. To get community "buy in" for programs will require more than just a few power point presentations "after" the decisions have already been made. So far the news from Mr. Simon is positive and inclusive. The BOE needs to affirm their selection of Mr. Simon as superintendent by being supportive of his "ABCDEF's."
LOMNOP September 06, 2012 at 10:24 AM
It appears that Mr. Simon is all about kids and true family man that will spill over into his role as superintendent. Wall should get better as long as his Administrators follow his lead instead of doing what they all want. The district should all have the same mind set instead of all the inconsistencies between the different school. It is all one school system. He needs to get through to both his Administrators and Teachers that it is about the KIDS and they need to try to teach different ways to different kids, no two kids are a like just as adults. He needs to guide and explain to the Administrators and Teachers that they are their to teach only not to break down a kid/student or to teach them a lesson out of teaching the ABC's. They are not their mothers or fathers... leave that up to them.

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