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Gloucester City School Board & Teachers Union to Discuss Sick Bank Program

By Linda Boker-Angelo

NEWS Correspondent

Marge Thomas of the Gloucester City Education Association (GCEA) asked the Board of Education to set up a meeting concerning the “sick bank” program.

During last week’s meet-ing, Mrs. Thomas, a staff member at Gloucester High and a member of the executive committee of the GCEA, asked the School Board when its designated committee would be meeting with the GCEA’s “sick bank” committee to discuss an agreement on this issue.

A sick bank traditionally is designed to aid employees who have used all of their accrued sick, personal and vacation time due to an injury or illness of their own, or due to the health issue of a family member.

Thomas said it was agreed upon at the signing of the last contract that both sides would work to approve a mutually acceptable sick bank agreement, which, to this point, has not been discussed.

Both Superintendent Paul Spaventa and Board Committee Head Edward Hubbs said they have been in touch with members of the GCEA, and a meeting to discuss the issue will be scheduled.

Members of the Gloucester City Board of Education (BOE) were pleased to hear comments by students selected to represent each of the schools.

Eighth grader Melissa Smierciak,  representing Hi-ghland Park Program for Success, said she likes the way her teachers make learning fun.

Smierciak has been attending Highland Park for two years. Principal George Henry said in that time she has displayed a great improvement in her attendance and her grades.

Smierciak said she was inspired to enroll in the program by her brother, who attended Highland Park.  She said she could benefit from the school, which offers a more flexible schedule and independent curriculum.

She said she loves all the mysteries of science.

Also, she wants to go to college and become a teacher like her science teacher, Miss Edwards.

Freshman Michelle Moler talked about some of the different events going on at Gloucester City High. Principal Jack Don praised Moler for her grades and participation in many community outreach programs.

Mitchell Kraft, a sixth grader at Mary Ethel Costello School, spoke about his family and some of the programs at Costello.

Principal Ken Wagstaff said Kraft’s teachers described the outstanding student as “extremely creative” and “a joy to be around.”

Third grader Kyle Markiewicz spoke about upcoming events planned for the children at Cold Springs School.

The Board will hold a public hearing on the district’s 2009-2010 school budget at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 2, in the media center of Gloucester High School.

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