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Education - Bristol Borough

New Board Members Sworn In, New VP Elected, Parent Sounds of about Daughter’s Safety

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Two newly elected school directors were sworn in, a new board vice-president was elected and parents sounded off about recent troubling events at Wednesday nights Bristol Borough School District reorganization meeting.

New school directors Brianna Curran and Tony Smith were sworn in by District Judge Frank W. Peranteau, Sr  along with Dave Chichilitti and John  D’Angelo who were reelected in November also.

Curran who earned the most voted among candidates is well known for her involvement with borough teens as she is the current president of the Bristol Borough Teen Foundation 

I want to thank everyone who voted for me, Curran said and I’m really excited about getting to work on the board.

Credit: YouTube

Smith was appointed to the board in September after Nunzio DeMarchis resigned from the board in August. 

Chichilitti was voted in by his fellow board members to retain  board presidency as board vice-president Mary Jane Potena-Paglione-  declined to be seated in that role due to ongoing health issues she cited in a letter to the officials.

Potena-Paglione did say in her letter to the board that she fully expects to continue her role as a school director for the remainder of her term and nominated Chichilitti to serve as board president once again.

Its been customary with the board for years that the serving vice-president is then elected to be the board president the following year

With the vice president slot opened up,  Michael Poploskie was elected unanimously to serve in that position for 2022.

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In board related news, during the public participation part of the meeting a parent of a  students attending the high  school voiced concerns  about a troubling event taking place Wednesday.

Specifically, Mr Harold Jackson Jr. said his daughter’s personal safety was endangered because she choose to “speak out” about a unspecified potential incident that was “going to happen” at the high school.

“I’m very frustrated” he  about how this was handled.

Credit: YouTube

Jackson said,  I don’t know whose decision it was, but she was released with all the other students at the same time as a student who spoke of the potential incident threatened her when school let out and told her “to watch her back.”

I felt as though she should have been held at the school and myself and my wife should have been contacted, Jackson said.

She was in “eminent danger.”

District Superintendent Dr Shaffer  said he was unaware of the incident and that he had no information about it but invited Jackson to meet with him the following day (Thursday) to discuss the matter in more detail.

Chichilitti suggested a police report should be filed.

Thursday Morning, Shaffer said the incident involving the female student was unrelated to the incident that lead to the early school dismissal of students just after 11:30 am Wednesday.

That incident came to the attention of school officials through the Safe2Say app Shaffer said.

The app was instrumental in alerting officials about the first “threat”  reported to officials late Sunday night that led to the cancelling of classes for junior and high school students. 

Shaffer said he expected charges to be filed against the student who caused the high school to close but declined to comment “at this time” on what the district will do in regards to the second incident on Wednesday,

Charges against either student have yet to be filed, Police said Friday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Education - Bensalem Township

Reach Cyber Charter School’s Class of 2024

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Reach Cyber Charter School recently held their in-person commencement graduation ceremony for 739  high school seniors. Among the graduating class was 24 graduates hailing from Bucks County. Family, friends and faculty were on hand to celebrate the graduates.

“On behalf of the entire staff and faculty of Reach Cyber, I’d like to give a warm congratulations to the Reach Cyber Class of 2024! We are immensely proud of all their accomplishments,” said Jane Swan, Reach Cyber Charter School CEO. “With the strong foundation this group of students has built during their time at Reach Cyber, I am confident that they are prepared to take on the next great adventure in their lives – whether that’s college, a job, military service, or other opportunities. We can’t wait to see all the incredible things they will do and the impact they will have in their communities and beyond.”

School officials said the students in the Class of 2024 have diverse backgrounds, educational histories, and talents, and all chose a cyber charter education to fit their unique interests, needs and abilities, Reach Cyber’s personalized and flexible learning environment, designed specifically for a virtual setting, offers students the opportunity to learn at their own pace, pursue their passions, or receive additional support that may not be available to them at their local brick-and-mortar schools.

In total, the Class of 2024 earned more than $1 million in scholarships toward their higher education pursuits. Fifty-five percent of the graduates plan to continue their education at a 2-year or 4-year college, 28% have plans to enter the workforce, 5% will go on to vocational training, 2% are entering a branch of the military, and 10% are taking a gap year or pursuing other endeavors post grad, said Reach’s spokesperson.

Reach Cyber Charter School Class of 2024 graduates from Bucks County:

Aisha Almroot
Gabrielle Baez
Erin Black
Trinity Brenner
Isaiah Brown
Aiden Cicale
David Cox
Alayna Crabtree
Gloria DeOliveira
Margaret Drake
Wyatt Frederick
Alyse James
Savanna Janiszewski
Ashley Mazzeo
Carter McAuley
Anastasia Patton
Tyler Pinkham
Christopher Raffa
Lynken Randt
Stephen Scott
Tanisha Smith
Leandro Vasquez-Roman
Logan Werner
Sabina Zeka

The Class of 2024 is the sixth class to graduate from Reach Cyber Charter School, which opened in 2016. Additionally, 20 graduates were inducted into the Founders Club, honoring those students who attended Reach Cyber for the school’s full eight years of operation.

ABOUT REACH CYBER CHARTER SCHOOL

Reach Cyber Charter School is a STEM-focused online public charter school for K-12 students in Pennsylvania. Reach Cyber provides students with a high-quality curriculum infused with STEM learning designed specifically for a virtual learning environment. At Reach Cyber, students have a dedicated and expansive support system of teachers, counselors, and family mentors to help them reach their potential. Reach Cyber allows students to personalize their education, offering traditional, accelerated, and yearlong pacing options that support students’ individualized needs.

Since opening in 2016, Reach Cyber has grown to support nearly 7,000 students in grades K-12 through Pennsylvania. Reach Cyber provides a high-quality curriculum infused with STEM learning and one-of-a-kind career exploration and development opportunities for students in all grade levels.

For more information, call 717-704-8437 or visit their website.

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Education - Bensalem Township

House Passes Legislation to Correct Pennsylvania’s Education Funding Inequities

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Earlier this month, in the state’s government,  House Bill 2370 legislation passed in the House . The bill is designed to bring adequacy, equity and stability to Pennsylvania’s education funding system.

In 2023, the courts ruled Pennsylvania’s school funding was unconstitutional because the current system is inequitable. HB 2370 will correct these inequities while creating $136 million in property tax relief for the upcoming fiscal year and $955 million in property tax relief over seven years,  said state Representative Tina Davis.

For the 2024-25 school year, according to Davis, the bill adds:

  • $728 million for chronically underfunded schools
  • $530 million in cyber charter savings
  • $200 million so every school district receives an increase

The property tax relief, Davis said, comes from the state taking funding burdens away from local taxes, such as property taxes, by addressing the previous inadequacies in state funding.

HB 2370 is now in the Senate for its consideration.

 

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Education - Bristol Borough

Bristol Borough School District Hires from Within to Fill Principal, Asst Principal Positions at Elementary School

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The Bristol Borough School District announced the hiring of new leadership beginning July 1 at Snyder-Girotti Elementary School.

Schoolboard President Dave Chichilitti said Wednesday he’s really excited about the appointments of Ms. Julie Balcer, as the new principal and Ms. Danielle Leyrer, as the elementary assistant principal at Snyder-Girotti.

Former principal Kelli Rosado tendered her resignation in March, officials said, however no explanation for her leaving in the middle of the academic year was provided.

Balcer began her educational journey in 2009 at Snyder-Girotti Elementary School. Over the past 15 years, she has made significant contributions as a 6th-grade teacher, a 5th-grade special education teacher, and later as a kindergarten teacher. In the past year, she has served as Dean of Students and Acting Principal of Snyder-Girotti, demonstrating her leadership skills and dedication to the school community, officials said.

Leyrer is a dedicated educator who is committed to empowering students and educators by fostering a supporting and enriching learning environment. She earned her bachelor’s degree in education from Millersville University. She completed her master’s degree and Principal Certification at Pennsylvania Western University – California, says a district release.

The duo were approved for the new “official” roles unanimously by the board last week.

Balcer is scheduled to make $125,000.00 per year and Leyrer has an 11- month contract coming in at just over $104,000.00.

Both Chichilitti and Truelove said they could not answer any questions with regards to any personal or social media related comments on personnel matters of any kind.

“As for social media posts not authorized by the District, we can’t comment on those matters…” in regard to recent allegations made and reported on by Lower Bucks Source last week which were commented on by a self-reported school district employee.

If any parent is having some kind of issue or concern, Chichilitti said, please reach out to us. We’re here for the students of school district and their parents and or guardians. We encourage everyone to contact us with questions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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