Dear Glen Meadow Families…

This blog installment will focus on “Hallway Highlights” I hope you enjoy reading the myriad of activities that are going on at Glen Meadow.


National Math Club: Some of the members from the National Math Club recently made a presentation to the Board of Education. They impressed the Board with their mathematical prowess. The National Math Club competition will take place on Saturday, February 1, 2020, at NJIT. Good luck to our “Mathletes”! Thank you to Coach Ferrara for helping students work through highly challenging multi-step math problems. To see a sampling of problems, check out the January 16 Board Meeting where our students presented; I believe you will be most impressed with our students!


Students will be seeing the movie “Screenagers- Growing up in the Digital Age” on Tuesday, January 21. “Screenagers” follows various teenagers and their families as they talk about how using devices has impacted them, their learning, and their relationships. We invite all parents to join us on Tuesday, January 21 (snow date January 22), at 6:30 pm in the gym, to watch the video. We want our parents to experience this movie as well to help them understand what it is like growing up in the Digital Age. A very special thank you to our SCA for bringing this program to Glen Meadow for the entire student body. We feel that parents of all ages of children should see this movie as well, please bring a friend and join us.  The SCA is accepting donations at the door to see this film.


If you missed our Parent Tech Night last week. Attached is a Google slideshow prepared by Mr. DeYoung, who is a parent of a teenager and one of our GMMS technology teachers, on the topic of cell phones, entitled “Tagging Nemo: Tools, Tips, and Tricks for Managing Cell Phone Use. Please take a moment to click the link above, here you will find a plethora of helpful information on cell phone usage and how to keep your child safe when using theirs. Thank you to Mr. DeYoung for presenting this important information to the Vernon community.

Blood Drive: Our next Blood Drive, organized by Mrs. Schmidt and her service-learning project students, will take place on Thursday, January 23, 2020, from 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm. Mrs. Schmidt’s student helpers are Phiona Seigal, Isys Benedeto, Lily Henderson and Katherine DeGraw who greet the blood donors, assist them at the paperwork table, and offer them drinks and snacks upon completing a blood donation. These students are learning the importance of giving back to their community. Also, remember…Mrs. Schmidt has been recognized as a Hometown Hero by Congressman Josh Gottheimer from the 5th Congressional District.


World Café: Students in Mrs. Basso’s and Mrs. Zaremba’s Language Arts classes read a piece from The Elements of Literature anthology called  “Long Walk to Freedom” by Nelson Mandela. After reading, some discussion, and responding to several comprehension questions, the students participated in a “World Cafe.” They moved around the room with a marker, responded on paper tablecloths to higher-order questions, provided evidence from the text to support their responses, and elaborated on previous answers from other students.

The students did a fantastic job following guidelines, collaborating, responding to the questions and providing evidence from the text to support their answers. Our students enjoyed the cafe setting and the activity, and we were very proud of them.


Connect for Community: “Connect for Community” is a program started by a small group of volunteers to help supplement donations to Sussex County food pantries, who continue to see demand rise annually.  Students across Sussex County have been donating items that cost $1.00 in celebration of the 100th day of the school year since 2010. The items that are donated are often items that families cannot purchase with food stamps. Glen Meadow students are collecting the following items for this worthy cause:

Grade 6: dishwashing liquid

Grade 7: individually wrapped toilet paper

Grade 8: paper towels

On Saturday, January 11th, 2020, several of our band students from both Glen Meadow Middle School and Vernon Township High School performed in the annual North Jersey Area Band Concert.  These students successfully auditioned against students from 30 local junior and senior high schools and were accepted to the Junior High NJAB Concert Band and Senior High NJAB Concert Band and Wind Ensemble.


Congratulations to NJAB Junior High School Concert Band

Noelle Hernandez – Clarinet

Rebekah Bruesehoff – Clarinet

Erin McDonough – Flute

Amanda Witters – Bassoon


1st place medal was brought home after several Glen Meadow girls competed at the Red Rose Championship Cheer event in Pennsylvania over the January 11-12th weekend. It was a very exciting event!  

Congratulations to Brooklyn Gargano, Madison Crum, Kasey Keating, Raven Waschmann, Kyla Bruno, and  Nicole Lehman.


From our 8th Grade Social Studies Teachers Ms. Kaiser, Mr. Petonak, and Mr. Smarth:

Lesson on Roman vs U.S. citizenship – students learned about the requirements for Roman citizenship and for American citizenship.  Students then had fun taking a mock citizenship test to see if they have the knowledge to “become a citizen”.   Top scorers earned extra credit points.  Students learned that in some US states, the state requires students to pass a similar civics test in order to graduate high school.  It was eye-opening for many!

The students have examined primary and secondary sources to find evidence suggesting “how democratic was the Roman Republic?”.  Students have also evaluated which pieces of evidence they found most persuasive and why. The skill of using primary and secondary sources is essential to learning about history and applying these sources to draw conclusions.

Students have been engaged in document-based investigations on the class structure in Roman society. Students analyzed the roles of the various classes and traced how the classes were affected and changed by developments in Roman culture over time.

Students also explored the perspectives of four individuals from ancient Rome society at the time of the Republic and key issues of the day.

Valentine’s For Vets: Our Student Ambassador’s Club along with the Builder’s Club are making Valentine’s for Vets, an annual program that sends handmade Valentine’s from school children around our country to our deployed troops. If anyone interested in participating in this national program, send your Valentine’s to: Hugs for Soldiers P.O. Box 2887 Duluth, GA 30096

Peer Tutoring: Thank you to Mrs. Pisco, our 6th Grade School Counselor, for organizing a Peer Tutoring program at Glen Meadow. Mrs. Pisco is working with all teachers to create student pairs that will work together during lunch. The peer tutor will assist and support his or her peers with studying, re-teaching concepts, and overall organization. Sometimes we find that when a peer uses “kid speak” it helps with concepts that one might struggle with.


5th Grade Glen Meadow Experience Night: On Thursday, January 30th, at 6:30 pm, several of our student leaders will be running an “experience” night for 5th-graders from Lounsberry Hollow who will soon be our friends at Glen Meadow. Our students will be demonstrating lots of academic activities our 5th graders will experience next year. Thank you to the following student leaders for running the program: Rebekah Bruesehoff , Noelle Hernandez, Austin Geisler, Olivia Schmick, Dan Gosses, Selah Nessine, Rachel Pietrucha, Jason Nina, Aidan Zachowski, Thomas Kimball, Luka Savytskyy, Emily Getz, Caitlyn Jensen, Alex Morocco,  Heath Gallant, Ty Mountain, Aryss Gomez, Chloe Debonta, Abby Sokolewicz, Sophia Avila, Luca Vizzini, Aden Karwoski, and Mikey Pecoraro


 Physical Education Program: Just like all other classes at Glen Meadow, our Physical Education program is very comprehensive where students learn a variety of sports, their rules, and the variety of activities one can do during recreational time. There is something for everyone in our Physical Education program. Our Physical Education teachers have covered several units of study which include: Project Adventure Games, Football, Soccer, Volleyball, Team Handball, and a variety of Fitness activities woven into all classes called “Fitness Fridays”. Our students are looking forward to our next Volleyball Tournament (for grades 6-7-8) that will take place on Friday, February 14, 2020, at 3:00 pm, and our Handball Tournament (grades 7-8) that will take place on Friday, March 6, 2020, at 3:00 pm. The Handball Tournament will be run by the VTHS DECA students and will be assisted by 8th-grade students Chris Gay and Dylan Bubenik. There will be more to follow on how to sign up for both programs.


Volleyball Tournament: Our next Volleyball Tournament will take place on Friday, February 14, at 3:00 pm. Our Physical Education teachers will be giving students more information on how to sign up for this very popular event.

National Junior Honor Society: If eligible, your child will soon be receiving a special invitation from Mrs. Amato, the NJHS Adviser, to apply to be a member of the NJHS. Please see this link to read all about this honor program that is open to all 7th and 8th-grade students who have a cumulative GPA of 92 or above. The induction will take place on March 18th.

Marking Period 2: Ends on Thursday, January 23, 2020. Grades will open on February 5th for viewing.


Student Behavior and Ethics Counsel

Our Board of Education recently approved a new position for Glen Meadow School called Student Behavior and Ethics Counsel. Mrs. MacDougall and Ms. Dignan-Corbutt are the advisers of this program. Below is some information from the Ethics Counsel teachers…

Mindful Mondays: Starting the week of January 20th, students will listen to a weekly goal during morning announcements called Mindful Mondays.  These goals will focus on the concepts of Be Prepared, Be Productive, and Be Positive–to reach your 100% (to reinforce The Glen Meadow Way).  It is hoped that the goals will motivate and remind students of handbook rules and conduct expectations–and will serve as talking points for teachers, staff, and students.  You will also find these Mindful Monday weekly goals posted on Schoology.  Thank you for asking your child what the goal is each week.  It is hoped that these goals will serve as a topic of discussion for you as well! 

Goals for the week of January 20th:  Our first Mindful Monday goal focuses on ways to Be Positive as we recap our New Year’s Resolutions December. What were they?   

*First– Wait for the teacher to dismiss before leaving class

*Second-Use appropriate language in your work or learning place

*Third-Listen without talking–to AM and PM announcements and when adults are speaking to you during lessons or in the cafeteria. 

Some information on communication and the proper channels Now that we are almost half-way through the year, I thought it was important to remind families with the steps to use as a reference if you need to reach someone at school to discuss an educational matter. These steps support direct, open, and respectful interactions so that problems and concerns can be worked out quickly and efficiently. Any question or concern should always start with the person listed in Step 1, as that person will usually have the most information on the topic. If you have a question or concern, please follow the steps listed below for the relevant topic.


Classroom Issues Involving an Individual Child

(Classroom procedures, behavior, bullying, HIB, grades, schedule, etc.)


Curriculum and Instruction

(Subject matter being taught, teaching strategies, textbooks and materials used, etc.)

STEP 1: Classroom Teacher; if not resolved…

STEP 2: School Counselor; if not resolved…(Grade 6-Mrs. Pisco, Grade 7- Mrs. Keane, Grade 8- Ms. Regan)

STEP 3: Director of Humanities, Mr. Vincent Gagliostro, or Director of Math and Science, Mr. Russ Rogers
STEP 4: Building Principal and/or Building Assistant Principal; if not resolved…
STEP 5: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, Dr. Charles McKay; if not resolved…
STEP 6: Superintendent of Schools, Ms. Karen D’Avino


Special Education, 504 Plans, and IEPs

STEP 1: Teacher, Specialist, or Child Study Team Member (Psychologist, School Counselor, Social Worker, Speech and Language Pathologist, Occupational Therapist, Physical Therapist); if not resolved…
STEP 2: Case Manager; if not resolved…
STEP 3: Building Principal; if not resolved…

STEP 4: Supervisor of Special Services Grades 7-12- Mrs. Cheryl vonSalzen; if not resolved…
STEP 5: Director of Special Services, Mrs. Deb Merrill; if not resolved…
STEP 6: Superintendent of Schools, Ms. Karen D’Avino

Medical Concerns

STEP 1: School Nurse; if not resolved…
STEP 2: Building Principal; if not resolved…
STEP 3: Superintendent of Schools, Ms. Karen D’Avino


School Counseling and Related Services

STEP 1: School Counselor, Social Worker, School Psychologist; if not resolved…
STEP 2: Supervisor of School Counseling- Mrs. Kristin Gudenkauf; if not resolved…
STEP 3: Building Principal or Assistant Principal; if not resolved…
STEP 4: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, Dr. Charles McKay; if not resolved…
STEP 5: Superintendent of Schools, Ms. Karen D’Avino


Transportation Concerns

(Behavior on school buses, etc.)

STEP 1: Building Assistant Principal; if not resolved…

STEP 2: Building Principal; if not resolved…
STEP 3: Supervisor of Transportation, Mrs. Jamie VanGilist; if not resolved…
STEP 4: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, Dr. Charles McKay; if not resolved…
STEP 5: Superintendent of Schools, Ms. Karen D’Avino

As I always like to say…thank you for partnering with all of us at Glen Meadow to provide your child with the best education possible!

Rosemary Gebhardt