The Bethlehem School Board welcomed a special guest at its Dec. 4 meeting. Northampton County President Judge Stephen G. Baratta was in attendance to swear in the newest members of the board.
One by one, Board President Michael Faccinetto, Director Rogelio Ortiz, Vice President Shannon Patrick and Director Angela Sinkler were called to raise their hand and take the oath. Each was asked to swear that they would perform their duties in compliance with the laws of the Commonwealth.
On Sept. 22, Senator Lisa Boscola and Lt. Governor Mike Stack held a two-hour presentation at Bethlehem city hall called Pathways to Pardons. The presentation, part of a statewide tour, is designed to reach into communities and spread a message of hope.
Liberty HS student representative Sarafina Schultheis described all of the exciting events occurring over the next few weeks, including concerts and tree lighting ceremonies, at the Nov. 20 meeting. Student representative Andrew Youwakim proudly announced that 105 students were recently inducted into the National Honor Society at Freedom HS.
The Nov. 13 meeting of the BASD finance committee was wrapped up in record time, lasting only about seven minutes, with all agenda items being recommended for vote at the regular November meeting.
The longest discussion was in regards to the replacement of a Northampton Community College trustee, José Rosado, who is unable to complete his term through 2018.
The BASD curriculum committee discussed their second charter school renewal for the 2017-18 school year Nov. 6.
Bethlehem residents and district officials gathered around Oct. 15, 1967, as Vice President Hubert Humphrey spoke at the Freedom HS and East Hills JHS dedication ceremony. His speech is still available for reading online to this day. In it, he applauded the two schools as the finest he had ever seen, saying to all involved that, “You have decided to equip those children for success – successful employment, successful college careers, successful participation in American society.”
The district finance committee had a lengthy discussion Oct. 16 to educate those in attendance about the new Homestead referendum expected on the November ballots. Board Secretary Stacy Gober brought up the topic in hopes of bringing a further understanding, and urged people in attendance to discuss the topic with the public.
The school board’s curriculum committee discussed charter renewal for the Lehigh Valley Dual Language Charter School (LVDLCS), located in Bethlehem Oct. 9. Under state law, all charter schools must seek renewal of their charter every five years, and a large portion of that process is an in-depth investigation by the chartering school district, as well as a question session before the board.
The board finance and facilities committees met Sept. 18. The topic of the evening was the extensive 2017 summer projects the district undertook. Projects ranging in scale from technology upgrades to new construction and demolition, made summer 2017 was the busiest summer the district has faced in years. Superintendent Dr. Joseph Roy said he was impressed with the sheer volume of work that had to come together for the district to make these improvements.
The schcool board recognized President Michael Faccinetto for his eight years of service to the district at its Sept. 25 meeting, but did not linger in celebration.
Members quickly swept through business and recommendations, as well as reports from students and committees. One interesting item up for vote, and approved unanimously, was a memorandum of understanding between Bethlehem and the district.