The NJSBA Board of Directors met on Friday, May 11, 2018, at the Association’s headquarters in Trenton.
Building a ‘Future Ready’ Association: The Board of Directors approved two resolutions of appreciation, one recognizing Cisco Systems for its generous contribution of video-conferencing equipment, and the second thanking SHI for its assistance in providing training and support in the implementation of the new technology. The Board of Directors also debuted the use of the equipment. (See photographs of the meeting in School Board Notes.)
In addition, the Board of Directors also approved:
- The open session minutes of the March 16, 2018 meeting;
- The resolution to enter into a shared service agreement with NJEdge.net
A major goal of the NJSBA’s 2018-2020 Strategic Plan focuses on “Building a ‘Future Ready’ Association.” The Strategic Plan calls for NJSBA to “lead by example” while providing local school boards with strategies and resources to advance digital learning and become “Future Ready.” At the May 11 meeting the Association rolled out its video-conferencing capability. Three Board of Director members attended the meeting from off-site locations.
NJSBA’s Governance and Operations Policy (GO/1120), which applies to Board of Directors meetings, permits remote access and voting. The Association has also updated corresponding regulations to reflect remote participation.
The video-conferencing was made possible by a generous donation by Cisco Systems, a worldwide leader in computer networking and hardware technology, which provided NJSBA with an in-kind contribution of equipment valued at $200,000. Its contribution, the largest in NJSBA’s 104-year history, will enable NJSBA to reach its goal of “Building a ‘Future Ready’ Association.”
SHI, a global IT solutions provider based in Somerset, lent its expertise during the installation of the equipment and provided training to staff in the use of the new technology.
A Year of Progress: 2017-2018 Year-End Report: Executive Director Dr. Lawrence S. Feinsod provided the members with a year-end report on the state of the Association that indicated excellent financial health for the Association. He also noted the support of members of “corporate New Jersey,” who share NJSBA’s commitment to public education, expanded training, and continued development of relationships with state government, particularly the new administration.
State Aid: Dr. Feinsod reported that state aid to education for 2018-2019 continues to be a work in progress. As a service to underfunded districts, NJSBA is sponsoring forums on this issue. The first meeting took place on May 3 in West Orange. Two more programs will be held on May 22 in Monroe Township and on June 6 in Absecon. The meetings focus on the issues facing underfunded school districts and effective lobbying strategies for board members. Regional conferences, called “Funding 101,” were held in northern and southern New Jersey in late April to educate members about the school funding formula and issues related to state aide.
School Security: NJSBA’s School Security Committee is updating the 2014 report, What Makes Schools Safe? The new report is expected to be completed this summer. Recent county school boards associations have focused on the topic of student safety. In addition, NJSBA will hold its third annual School Security Conference on Friday, June 1.