March 2019 Spotlight

Will Aninowsky

Mark your calendars for the following dates:

  • Wednesday, March 6th – 7:30 PM  Education Foundation (EFLS) Meeting
  • Thursday, March 14th  - 7:00 PM Board of Education Meeting
  • Thursday, March 28th - Saturday, March 30th  - Markham Place Play

Markham Place Student Accepted into the New Jersey State Youth Orchestra

Will Aninowsky

The New Jersey State Youth Orchestra is an honors orchestra comprised of highly skilled musicians in grades two through twelve (2-12) throughout the State of New Jersey.  There are currently approximately 175 students in the State whose auditions qualified them to participate in one of four ensembles.  The Preparatory String Orchestra (PSO) is oriented toward students who are just beginning their musical training. It is open to string players in the second grade and above.  Congratulations to Markham Place fifth grade student Will Aninowsky who auditioned in January and qualified for the PSO.  Will’s dedication and practice earned him a seat playing his cello. 




2018 New Jersey Art Educator Teacher of the Year – Nicole Lawlor

Markham Place Art Teacher, Nicole Lawlor, was named the 2018 New Jersey Art Teacher of the Year!  As part of her Teacher of the Year duties, Mrs. Lawlor facilitated a workshop for other New Jersey Art Educators.  She was thrilled to have the opportunity to share one of her innovative lessons with a group of teachers, and we are delighted that our students benefit from her talent every day!

Nicole Lawlor   Art Work

Are you using the Genesis Student Management System to monitor your children’s progress?

Parents have access to the Genesis Parent Portal.  If you are not already using it, there is a Genesis app for i-Phone and Android users. 

Genesis Mobile iphone   i-Phone Users

  1. Click on Safari or the web browser on your i-Phone
  2. Enter the parent portal address in the URL window
  3. Press “Go”
  4. You will now be at the mobile Genesis Parent Portal website
  5. Click the download button download
  6. Click the button – Add to Home Screen
  7. You can now see the Genesis app on your mobile desktop

Genesis Mobile Android  Android Users

  1. Click on the Chrome web browser on your Android
  2. Enter the parent portal address in the URL window
  3. Press “Go”
  4. You will now be at the mobile Genesis Parent Portal website
  5. Click the three dots  download
  6. Click the button – Add to Home Screen
  7. When Add to Home screen – Genesis Mobile comes up – click ADD
  8. You can now see the Genesis app on your mobile desktop


News from the Garden State Coalition of Schools

As you know, Little Silver is a member of the Garden State Coalition of Schools (GSCS).  The GSCS is a non-partisan, non-profit Education Advocacy Organization.  The GSCS advocates at the state level for quality public education for New Jersey's children, and also serves the public by maintaining high-level information services.  The GSCS has been closely following the Marijuana Legislation.  The Paramus Board of Education recently passed a resolution urging the New Jersey Legislature to refrain from passing any marijuana legalization legislation until a Legislature-appointed commission has studied the long-term impact of legalization, especially the impact on under-aged students.  To see the full text of the resolution, click here.


Theater Goers – Mark Your Calendars!

The Markham Place School Theater will present Disney and Cameron Mackintosh's Mary Poppins Jr. on Thursday, March 28th at 4:30 PM, Friday, March 29th at 7:00 PM, and Saturday, March 30th at 7:00 PM. Tickets for the Thursday Matinee performance will be $8. Additionally, senior citizens can receive one complimentary ticket to the Thursday performance. Friday and Saturday tickets will be sold for $10. Tickets will go on sale to the public on Thursday, March 21st and will be sold online at  Click on "Current Events" to purchase tickets. To receive a senior citizen complimentary ticket, stop by the main office of the school. 


The “practically perfect” musical, designed for middle school-aged performers, is based on the classic P.L. Travers stories and the Walt Disney film. The production includes 49 students in the cast and 40 students in the stage crew. 


All of London is shouting from the rooftops about this exciting stage adaptation of the classic tales of Mary Poppins. Join the Banks family as they encounter adventure after fun-filled adventure with their curious new nanny, Mary Poppins. Adapted especially for young performers, this musical includes favorite Sherman brothers’ songs such as “A Spoonful of Sugar,” “Feed the Birds,” and “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious,” as well as wonderful new songs by George Stiles and Anthony Drewe. The production will last approximately 1.5 hours, and with colorful characters and an irresistible score, Mary Poppins Jr. is sure to be a crowd-pleaser for all ages!


You can follow our show on Twitter at @MPSTheater. We hope to see you at the show!


RWJ Barnabas

Markham Place partners with Monmouth Medical Center to Present Workshops for Students!

In collaboration with the Monmouth Medical Center Foundation and RWJBarnabas Health, Markham Place School will be hosting three events:

  1. Thursday, February 28th – 7th Grade Presentation
  • 9:00 AM – 9:45 AM Students and Parents
  • 9:45 AM – 10:30 AM Parent Q&A
  • Topic: Navigating through the negative impacts of social media; Our youth and identifying today’s anxieties; Healthy coping skills every child needs to know
  1. Thursday, Marth 7th  - 8th Grade Presentation
  • 1:30 PM – 2:15 PM Students only
  • 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM Parents
  • Topic: Dealing with social demands after Middle School; Safeguarding you and your family against opioids and vaping; Navigating through the negative impacts of social media
  1. Monday, March 11th – 5th & 6th Grade Presentation
  • 9:00 AM – 9:45 AM Students and Parents
  • 9:45 AM – 10:30 AM Parent Q&A
  • Topic: Healthy coping skills every child needs to know; Know the difference: Bullying vs. normal developmental conflict 


Budget and Finance

It’s that time of year when we are creeping closer to presenting the 2019-2020 budget to the community.  Little Silver has been facing budgetary challenges for years, and last year we were faced with several staff cuts due to budgetary constraints.  This year, the Governor’s Hearing will be held on March 5th, and State Aid numbers will be released 48 hours later.  We have a general idea of what to expect.  On March 14th, the Little Silver Board of Education will accept a tentative budget adoption, with the final budget presentation to the community on Tuesday, April 30th.  While we do not plan to cut any positions, we will be recommending the move to a Pay-to-Play model beginning the 2019-2020 school year.  We have held off as long as possible while surrounding communities moved to this model, but we have reached a point where the district needs to offset this expenditure.  The model will pertain to sports and afterschool club activities such as music programs, theater programs, clubs, etc. 

A pay structure HAS NOT been finalized.  The district has vetted a way to utilize MySchoolBucks for parents to pay online.  More to come!

NJ legislature

Is a New School Funding Formula on the Horizon?

For the past several years, we have been informing the Little Silver community about our budgetary challenges.  As you know, we are a really high performing school district.  PARCC 2018 Test results revealed that Little Silver faired extremely well compared to other NJ schools.  We continue to maintain high levels of student achieve at a low per pupil cost.  Little Silver’s per pupil cost in this 2018-2019 school year is about $15,500, which is thousands less per pupil than the State average.   According to the NJDOE Taxpayer’s Guide to Education Spending 2018, the average cost per pupil during the 2016-2017 school year (they are always two years behind in publishing actual spending) was $20,849.  Therefore, we can assume that the 2018-2019 State Average will be at least $21,500 – or $6,000 above Little Silver’s cost per pupil.  The article, The 50 N.J. school districts spending the most per student, listed the #1 highest per pupil cost district as spending $61,489 per child and #50 as spending $26,646 per student.  Eight (8) Monmouth County School districts appeared on that list ranging from $28,252 to $36,957 per pupil.  The 2018-2019 Budget Presentation revealed that the local tax levy supports 93.8% of the school budget.  The 2% tax levy cap is not enough to keep pace with rising costs.  The aforementioned budget presentation also demonstrated that Little Silver realizes only 2.8% of our total budget in State Aid.  That is with the State funding only 58% of the School Funding Formula.  Last year’s Legislative Forum with all District 11 & 13 Senators and Assemblymen/women (January 2018), moderated by Dr. Kossack, was merely part of an ongoing conversation with local legislators regarding school funding.  On Monday, March 4th, there will be a press conference at the State House regarding a School Funding Reform Bill Package that the Republicans are putting forth.  The “Every Child Counts” (ECC) bill package encompasses four (4) components.  In short, the bill will:

  1. Improve support for special education students by making special education funding 100% categorical instead of the current 1/3 categorical and 2/3 wealth equalized.  As noted above, because of Little Silver’s wealth, we have received minimal State Aid in the past. 
  2. Ensure school funding tracks student needs every year.  In the past, school funding has not been consistently funded at the intended percentage.  The proposed bill wants to amend the state constitution to ensure that the statutory school funding formula is followed every year even if it is on a pro-rated basis because of volatile state revenues limiting how much school aid can be afforded within the State Budget.
  3. Increase accuracy and equity within school funding.  They are proposing that the method to determine how much more or less aid a school district gets should be educationally sound and not based on politics.
  4. End the gimmicks and external manipulations within school funding.  They are proposing using the Federal small area income and poverty estimate, currently used for Title I funding, as the measure of at-risk students in lieu of school districts self-reported free/reduced lunch numbers.  Title I is the largest federal aid program for public schools in the United States.  Title I provides federal funds to schools with high percentages of low-income students.  Little Silver receives a minuscule amount of Title I funding so this component would likely have little impact on our district.

More to come after the press conference!

Seal of NJ government

The New Jersey Legislature Passed a Bill Requiring Boards of Educations to Include Instruction Regarding LGBT Individuals

On 12/18/18, the State of New Jersey 218 Legislature passed a bill requiring boards of education to include instruction, and adopt instructional materials, that accurately portray political, economic, and social contributions of persons with disabilities and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. published an article explaining what students would learn.  The Little Silver School District provided teachers Professional Development on February 15th regarding LGBTQ issues and is preparing to make curricular revisions across grade levels to meet the demands of the new law.

Did you know

Did you know that the Education Foundation of Little Silver (EFLS) is hosting their annual fundraising event on Friday, April 5, 2019 at the Navesink Country Club located at 50 Luffburrow Lane, Middletown, NJ 07748.  Come support the EFLS in helping to provide our students with the most current technologies!