Clark BOE Thanks Varriano For Years of Service

By KELLY MEHORTER
For Union County HAWK

CLARK — At its Monday meeting, the Clark Board of Education thanked Henry Varriano for 20 years of service as a board member. A graduate of Arthur L. Johnson High School, Mr. Varriano retired as a longtime educator with the Elizabeth school district before he was elected to the board in 2003.

Board member Thomas Lewis stated, “Henry has made enormous strides in supporting and helping the music arts. When ALJ didn’t have a band, he was the architect [who worked] with the high school, as well as the community, to establish … one of the best bands in the county. I would like to say thank you from the board of education and from the community for all your caring, all your dedication, and your commitment. Thank you for your service on the Clark Board of Education, Henry.”

“Education has been my whole life,” Mr. Varriano said. “I enjoy working with the board members, staff and students. It’s been a pleasurable experience and thank you very much.”

Board member Lorraine J. Aklonis, who was re-elected to the board in November, thanked voters for allowing her to serve the district’s public schools for another three years.

“I want to encourage parents to keep involved with the schools because there’s nothing more important than your support for your children in our schools,” Ms. Aklonis stated. “When I attended the open houses, many parents were there and they were very excited at the beginning of the year, hustling around, meeting the teachers. But as the year goes on, this enthusiasm seems to dwindle. I do encourage you to stay involved by contacting teachers, staying on Genesis to see your student’s progress and to communicate with teachers.”

In other business, Superintendent Ed Grande announced that the spring 2022 New Jersey Graduation Proficiency Assessment (NJGPA) results have been posted on the district website under the “Curriculum, Technology and Assessment” page, along with scores from the New Jersey Student Learning Assessments (NJSLA), Dynamic Learning Maps (DLM) and ACCESS for English Language Learners (ELLs). Once the board receives its final batch of testing scores, it will provide a cumulative presentation on this data during an upcoming meeting, Mr. Grande explained.

Mr. Grande also reported that all K-2 teachers have been Orton-Gillingham trained to provide literary support to their students. “The Orton-Gillingham Academy (OGA) is an accrediting and certifying body dedicated to upholding the highest professional and ethical standards for the practice of the Orton-Gillingham (OG) Approach for the treatment of dyslexia,” the OGA’s website states.

Additionally, the superintendent stated that Tara Oliveira and her team of administrators at Arthur L. Johnson High School are actively working on implementing a block schedule for the next school year.

The next Clark Board of Education public session meeting will take place on Thursday, January 5, at 7 p.m., in the Clark Council Chambers.

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