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NBOE Teacher Talk May 15, 2023

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Message from the Superintendent 

Dear Teachers and Instructional Staff,

On April 25, 2023, Newark voters overwhelmingly approved next year’s school budget. We are extremely appreciative of Newark residents’ support of our vision to build a new educational ecosystem that provides a world-class education for every child in Newark.

The fact is that Newark residents have been paying well over $130 million in taxes each year for over a decade. While this year Governor Murphy gave Newark the largest allocation of state aid in history, and we are extremely appreciative of him for doing so, the district is still not fully funded and remains below adequacy. We are addressing that reality with reorganization, rightsizing, and other innovative strategies to keep our commitment to accountability, transparency, and efficiency in the optimal delivery of services. Today, in particular, is a critical day toward that end.

We will soon be ending Year 3 of our historic ten-year strategic plan, The Next Decade: 2020-30. If you haven’t done so already, please take a moment to review our Year 3 Report, which outlines our progress to date. We will continue to modernize our existing facilities, open more new schools, enhance course offerings and social-emotional support services for our students, enrich and accelerate summer learning, strengthen parent engagement, sharpen professional development for our faculty and staff, and expand and build new partnerships. Our work is resulting in an unprecedented increase in enrollment. Newark parents are voting with their feet and walking our way!

The design of the strategic plan with you and key stakeholders in our community has helped us lead the way. During our academic walkthroughs throughout the year, I have seen evidence of everyone’s efforts to understand the seven key indicators we find important. I also have witnessed the positive impact of your recommended policy changes on school culture and climate. I see your great work, and I appreciate your ongoing efforts to support our students way beyond these words. I applaud you, and I thank the Board for their leadership and steadfast support.

Since the start of this school year, it has become increasingly clear to me that maximizing instructional time for all our students must be our highest priority. The month of May is extremely important, as the year’s hard work culminates in various forms of assessment for our students.  State tests or college readiness exams are being administered in every school this month. The growth we are experiencing and gaps we are closing are at a critical juncture. Every day of learning matters, and two extra days off for teachers and students would detract from our ability to do so. Our work is far from done.

School districts that have only the minimum 180 school days build a cushion of “snow days” into their calendars. We in Newark don’t have that cushion. Over a decade ago, instructional days were added above the state’s minimum requirement, and as a result our school year has 182 school days without any provision for inclement weather days. If we were to build in “snow days,” they would be in addition to the negotiated 182 school days.

The last weeks of school always bring much excitement and anticipation for the end of the school year. This is a time where we recognize everything that was achieved and celebrate the commencement exercises for students across our schools. The last day of school is June 23, 2023.


Mr. León

Here are a few important links:

Superintendent’s Council Meetings
The Superintendent Council Meetings are scheduled throughout the year. As the 22-23 school year comes to a close, the Superintendent will be hosting a final round of meetings (in-person) as outlined in the table below. Please note, the Superintendent Council of Teachers meeting has been moved from Wednesday, May 10th and will take place on Friday, May 19th at 8:30am. Please ensure the requested attendees are present for the meeting. 


Council of Teachers

Date: Friday, May 19th
Time: 8:30am-10:30am

Format: In-person
Harold Wilson (190 Muhammad Ali Ave)

Elementary - 1 teacher per grade span
High School - 1 teacher per grade

Message from Dr. Reilly

Dear Teachers and Instructional Staff,

The upcoming weeks are an opportunity for you to help students focus on gaining the skills they may still find challenging. With the right guidance, students can take advantage of this time to develop their skills and build on their academic accomplishments. Take time to assess their current academic standing, identify areas of improvement, and create an action plan with measurable goals; students can make the most out of this period.

As promised, here are some activities to help students engage with their summer reading and make it an enjoyable experience. With these activities, students will be able to explore new ideas, gain insight into their reading material, and develop a deeper understanding of the text. 

Summer reading books will begin arriving at schools at the end of May. We look forward to seeing the work that students create.

Dr. Reilly



Pre-K Summer Learning Calendar / Activities (New)

Contact: Kimberly Ramsay, Office of Early Childhood

To support our Pre-K students during the summer months, the Office of Early Childhood has developed hands-on learning experiences for your students to complete. Enclosed in this summer packet (available June 2023) is a calendar with daily literacy, math, science, and social-emotional experiences to ensure that learning continues. There are also activities that coincide with transition backpacks and the summer reading books Jabari Jumps and I Like Myself. September is right around the corner and we want our students' love of learning to continue throughout these summer months.


10th Annual Night at the Museum!

Contact: Mara Kaplan, Office of Early Childhood

The Newark Board of Education Office of Early Childhood proudly invites you to Night at the Museum. This fun-filled event at the Newark Museum of Arts features educational activities, museum tours, early childhood resources, and programs for children and families including special guest Chase from Paw Patrol. This event will take place on Friday, June 9 from 3:00- 7:00 PM at 49 Washington Street. Please share the flyers below with your staff and family and encourage them to register at

We look forward to seeing you and your families there!



Foundational Skills: Guided Writing and Student Prompting

Contact: Jazleen Othman, Office of ELA

In this interactive session, teachers will explore how guided writing supports foundational skills at each stage of development. Teachers will also use knowledge of foundational skills and the small group tracker to plan and practice effective prompting. You will leave with a planned guided writing activity, including potential misconceptions and prompts you can use to address these. 

Sign Up Here:


Mandatory Summer School - Additional Letters

Contact: Darren Watsky, Student Information Services

Letters for additional students requiring summer school will be provided to homeroom teachers for student delivery home during the week of Monday, May 1. Your school PowerSchool clerk or designee will print the letters, and distribute them to classrooms. Teachers will give the letters to students for delivery to parents. Parents are to sign the letters and return them to school. If letters are returned to teachers, they are to be given to the PowerSchool clerk or other designee identified by the Principal.



Presenting the 2nd Annual City Wide Green Fest

Contact: Rodney L Williams, Office of Facilities

This year, the City Wide Green Fest will focus on projects and presentations that deal with cleaner use of the expenditures of energy or the result in a cleaner environment because of, or in spite of, energy use. Projects or presentations must include an interactive component that the public can engage with. The project can either be a singular project and/or group projects. The winning projects will receive a cash prize and consideration for a tech-based internship.



Ongoing Opportunities for Newark Board of Education Teaching Staff! (New)

Contact: Dr. Yolanda Méndez, Human Resource Services
Email: YMendez@NPS.K12.NJ.US

Continued opportunities for current Teachers within our District:

  • $1,000 referral bonus for recruiting others to become Teachers in the District. Visit and complete the form for each candidate you refer.
  • $4,000 incentive bonus for current, eligible Teachers interested in transitioning into Bilingual/Bicultural Endorsement.
  • An overall competitive health benefits and wellness package.
  • Leadership opportunities for those that wish to become future administrators.
  • A competitive stipend for involvement in co-curricular activities. 

If you're interested in these opportunities, please contact Claire Emmanuel at cemmanuel@NPS.K12.NJ.US.


High School Freshman Orientation on May 18, 2023 (New)

Contact: Dr. Maria Ortiz, High School Leadership Team
Email: M1Ortiz@NPS.K12.NJ.US

All High Schools will host freshman orientation for all 8th graders and their families on Thursday, May 18, 2023 at 6:00 p.m.

We are excited about welcoming the class of 2027 and share the amazing opportunities that all of our high schools have to offer. The high schools are asking that all elementary principals, 8th grade homeroom teachers, all other teachers, and all school counselors to remind 8th graders and their families this week.


May is Mental Health Awareness Month (New)

Contact: Jennifer Medina, Office of Benefit Services

An important aspect of taking care of our mental well-being is recognizing key stressors in our lives before they negatively impact our physical and mental health. Stress manifests itself differently in each of us, as anxiety, depression, burnout, sleep deprivation, and more. We encourage you to take the opportunity this month to reflect on how stress impacts your mental health, and to take advantage of resources we have available to proactively support our community’s mental well-being—and to recognize when additional professional help is needed.



Contact: Carlos Reyes, Human Resource Services

Please spread the word and post THIS FLYER in all of your social media platforms! Take advantage of our referral program and earn $1,000 for each teacher successfully hired with our district.

  • Registration for Applicants
  • Audience: This job fair is designed for instructional/teaching roles. All teachers are welcome (Elementary and High School)!
  • When: Saturday, May 20, 2023
  • Time: 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
  • Location: First Avenue School, 214 1st Avenue, Newark, NJ, 07107.

If you have any questions, please contact


Creating LGBTQ+ Affirming Spaces Paid PD (New)

Contact: Jennifer Rodriguez, Office of Federal Programs and Grants

June is Pride Month! The CDC DASH Grant, in partnership with Planned Parenthood of Metropolitan NJ, is excited to offer three paid professional development opportunities focusing on creating LGBTQ+ affirming spaces. These 4-5PM virtual sessions on May 22, 24, and 25 are open to all district teachers and support staff. Participants will receive the contractual supplemental pay and the opportunity to win a raffle. Please see the attached flier for session descriptions and Whetstone registration links:

For more information, contact


Nominate a Student for MSU's Cali School of Music Pathways (New)

Contact: Antonia Germanos, Office of Visual and Performing Arts

Montclair State University's Cali School of Music Pathways Program: Music Educators can nominate students entering grades 8-12 for Montclair State University's life-changing Cali School of Music Pathways Program. See below for information and recommend applicable students today:

To nominate a student, click here:


Register Students for the Virtual Newark Math Olympics (New)

Contact: Amanda Grossi, Office of Mathematics

The Newark Virtual Math Olympics is open to every NBOE student from grade 6-12. Students can join the Google Classroom now and the Math Olympics questions will be posted at 12:00 pm on May 26. Submissions are due at 9:00 am on May 30.

This year’s theme is the City of Newark. From City Hall, to Paramount Theater, to 200 years of Newark population data, two items in each grade/course are Newark-themed.

For more information and Google Classroom codes, click here.


Remind Students to Submit their Desmos & Mathigon Designs (New)

Contact: Amanda Grossi, Office of Mathematics

The deadline for the Mathigon & Art and Desmos & Art submissions is May 26. Here is more information, including how students can submit their designs, for the Mathigon and Desmos competitions.


New Teacher Induction (New)

Contact: Dana Mishoe, Educator Effectiveness

The June New Teacher Development session will take place on Tuesday, June 6, 2023 between 4-6pm. Teachers who are new to Newark (regardless of previous experience) are expected to attend 6 of the 10 monthly sessions. There will be a variety of sessions to choose from; please use the following Calendar Link to register and view all New Teacher Induction sessions offered on June 6th.


Professional Development Form (New)

Contact: Dana Mishoe, Educator Effectiveness

Be certain to complete the professional development form by June 21st. As required by the NJDOE, every teacher completes at least 20 hours of PD per year.

The link for the form is here.


Introductory Course - The Writing Revolution

Contact: Jazleen Othman, Office of ELA

If you haven't taken The Writing Revolution's (TWR) introductory course yet, you can register now for a spring course. Click here for more information. Completion of a TWR introductory course is the prerequisite for any future TWR workshops and/or TWR curriculum projects for the district. Educators who register for a course taking place outside of school hours will receive payment for their time from the district upon completion of the course. Please email if you have any questions.


Revolutionary Workshop - The Writing Revolution

Contact: Jazleen Othman, Office of ELA

If you have completed the TWR introductory course and have been using TWR strategies in your classroom, you can register for an upcoming TWR Revolutionary Workshop. In this workshop, educators are guided through the process of embedding TWR strategies in their content, and learn practices for implementing those strategies in a lesson. Click here for more information. This workshop is the prerequisite for any future TWR curriculum projects for the district. Educators who register for a workshop will receive payment for their time from the district upon completion of the workshop. Please email if you have any questions.


OSE Updates and PD Opportunities

Contact: LaPrice Weatherington, Office of Special Education

In New Jersey, the week of May 14th is dedicated to "shouting out" or "shining out" your special education teachers, CST, and support staff for their dedication in supporting students with special needs. The month of May is also dedicated to "Better Speech and Hearing".  Be sure to shout out your speech language specialists and audiologist.  

See this month's attachment for upcoming professional development opportunities. Did you know that parents can access IEP's remotely? See and share the recorded webinar with your parents.


Parent University – Spring 2023!

Contact: Mariah Alston, Office of Federal Programs & Grants

Parent University is back for the Spring 2023 semester! Families can register to attend virtual, live workshops on various topics from February-May 2023, hosted by experts in their fields. Workshop topics this semester include: Adverse Childhood Experiences, Money Management, Stretching Food Dollars, Time Management, Goal Development, Portion Sizes & More!

Please print, share, post, and distribute the Parent University flyer and encourage families to explore all our website has to offer.

Parent University Website:

May 2023 Flyer:

May 2023 2nd Flyer:


2022-2023 Discretionary Funds

Contact: MJames, Office of Human Resource

Dear Teachers, Nurses, Academic Interventionists:

As per District policy, in order to be reimbursed in the amount of $150.00 for items that supplement and affect your work with pupils this school year, you will be providing your receipts to your location treasurer.

Please be guided by the Discretionary Fund Memo attached.


2022-2023 Escrow Program

Contact: MJames, Office of Human Resource

Dear Employee:

  • Escrow Open Enrollment is May 1st through July 15th of each year!
  • Employees who are 10-month and 11-month full time employees can now self-enroll, discontinue, and switch options in the Escrow Program.
  • To view the option you have selected, feel free to log into ESS (Employee Self Service) - instructions attached.
  • For more information about deductions and refund dates for the option you have selected, kindly visit



Communicating with the Media

Contact: Nancy Deering, Office of Communications
Email: NDeering@NPS.K12.NJ.US

This district works hard to shape and create a narrative that positions the great work that is being done by you and your staff, appropriately. The Director of Communications will serve as spokesperson for the district and take the lead in communicating with the media. So please forward ALL media inquiries, requests for interviews, etc., to Nancy Deering ( and copy your Principal or department head.

A copy of the policy is attached for your convenience:


Principal's List Criteria: Grades 3 to 12

Contact: Roger León, Superintendent

Please be advised that page 41 of the High School Guidebook (section on Honor Roll) has been updated accordingly. Updates are found in the attachment.


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Teacher Talk will be delivered every other Monday.

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NBOE in the News

Stay informed on everything happening within Newark Public Schools and the Newark Board of Education! Read up on all of the many ways the district is garnering media coverage. 

News StoriesMay 04, 2023: AeroFarms Continue to Grow at NPSMay 04, 2023: Top Cop, Global CEO Give Powerful Talks at Newark’s West Side HighMay 01, 2023: Applications Are Live For 2023 Summer Programs Press ReleasesApr 27, 2023: Newark Public Schools Senior Wins Top National Honor Society Award 


NPS Mobile App! 

The district's NPS Mobile App is now available for download for both Apple iOS and Android. With this app you, can:

• Receive Push Notifications when there is inclement weather and school closings

• Track news feeds (powered by your school web site, Facebook and Twitter accounts) at the district and school level

• Look up commonly-sought information directly from the mobile app

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