Archive for the ‘Press Coverage’ Category

North suburban school district reorganizations

Tara Fisher was elected president and Kevin Mahler, vice-president. Mrs. Fisher had been acting president since March.

Seven of nine members were sworn into office by District Judge William Wagner, the large number occurring because of two-year terms resulting from resignations. Returning incumbents are Mr. Mahler, Libby Blackburn, Michael Meyer and Richard McClure. Mr. Meyer and Mr. McClure had been appointed to fill vacancies, and Mr. Mahler was originally elected to a two-year term. New members are Christopher Disque, Suzanne Filiaggi and Christopher Finley.

Christopher Jacobs did not seek re-election, and Joseph Greenberg and 20-year veteran Maureen Grosheider were defeated in their re-election bids. Most of the successful candidates had been endorsed by Save NA Schools, a group formed three years ago to fight larger elementary class sizes and the potential closing of Peebles Elementary School.

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North Allegheny superintendent lauds parents and students

The annual Report of Student Achievement gives the North Allegheny School District “much to celebrate,” but substitute superintendent Robert Scherrer was quick to give credit, not just to district employees, but also to parents and the students themselves.

“We thank you for all your efforts each and every day,” Mr. Scherrer said during the board’s Dec. 2 reorganization meeting. “We focus on the whole child and strive to support each student academically, emotionally and socially, allowing each student to find success in a changing world.”

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The North Allegheny school board Wednesday appointed Richard McClure as a new board member.

Mr. McClure, of Franklin Park, has spent 30 years in commercial real estate management, currently running his own company, Pennsylvania Commercial Management Services.

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The North Allegheny school board Wednesday hired Caitlin Bogosta as assistant principal at the intermediate high school.  Ms. Bogosta is currently assistant principal of Pine-Richland Middle School.

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The North Allegheny School District e-Report, which includes an update on Focus 2020 (NA’s 1:1 technology initiative) and the Human Resources report,  may be accessed here.

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Substitute Superintendent Robert Scherrer of North Allegheny School District pursues public input on how his schools are performing.

He hosts monthly forums with parents, convenes regularly with business professionals and faith-based leaders, and asks committees of students, parents and community members to guide major decisions such as a plan to equip 2,100 students with iPads or laptops.

“When you start to talk to kids and parents,” said Scherrer, who oversees 12 schools centered in the McCandless area, “then you see it through their eyes, and it allows us to get better at what we do.”

That’s why Scherrer and his administrative team recognize the value in a nationwide K-12 school ranking by Shadyside-based Niche.com Inc.

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The North Allegheny school board Wednesday accepted the resignation of longtime board member Thomas Schwartzmier.

Mr. Schwartzmier was appointed to Franklin Park Borough Council and cannot serve in both positions. His resignation was effective Aug. 5.

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Pittsburgh Trib

The North Allegheny School Board unanimously approved an agreement Wednesday night to release Raymond D. Gualtieri from his duties as district superintendent and grant him medical leave and a severance package before he retires.

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Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

North Allegheny’s school superintendent, Raymond Gualtieri, is taking medical leave, then retiring with more than a year left on his contract.

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The North Allegheny School District’s plan to give every first- through 12th-grader an iPad or laptop over four years will be helped by a tax increase approved Wednesday.

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The North Allegheny school board will likely vote Wednesday to increase taxes in order to avoid cuts to programs, including elimination of a popular one-to-one technology initiative.

The board will consider two versions of a $144.2 million budget. Both versions were requested by board members.

“The reason the board requested two budget scenarios is because we need to consider what things would look like if a millage increase is not approved this year,” said board President Tara Fisher. “For comparison purposes, it’s important that the board understand the nature and the extent of any proposed cuts necessary to balance the budget without a tax increase.”

The first budget scenario, which is recommended by administrators, would raise millage by 3.43 percent, or 0.5972 mills, the most allowed by Pennsylvania’s Act 1. That would give North Allegheny a tax rate of 18.001 mills, one of the lowest rates in Allegheny County.

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The Save NA Schools group continued to rack up victories for school board seats.

The group’s endorsed slate of three incumbents and three newcomers swept the Republican nominations for four- and two-year terms. Incumbent Joe Greenberg was defeated on both ballots, and longtime incumbent Maureen Grosheider’s name will appear only on the Democratic ballot in November.

Candidates whose names will appear on both tickets are incumbents Kevin Mahler, Libby Blackburn and Michael Meyer and newcomer Chris Finley for four-year terms, and newcomer Suzanne Filiaggi for a two-year term. Mrs. Blackburn was elected four years ago and Mr. Mahler two years ago. Mr. Meyer was appointed to the board last year.

Newcomer Chris Disque of McCandless won a Republican nomination and longtime incumbent Mrs. Grosheider won a Democratic nomination.

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Incumbent North Allegheny School Board member Joseph Greenberg did not make it past the May 19 primary, but the other candidates will move on to the general election in November, according to unofficial results from the Allegheny County Elections Division.

Challenger Suzanne Filiaggi received both the Democratic and Republican nominations for a two-year term and has won that seat unless there is a successful write-in campaign. She beat incumbent Maureen Grosheider, who sought only the Republican nomination for that seat.

“Transparency and accountability — that’s what we believe, and we are all humbled by the opportunity to serve as directors,” said Suzanne M. Filiaggi, 46. of Franklin Park. She was part of a slate that also included fellow challengers Christopher Disque and Christopher Finley and incumbents Libby Blackburn, Kevin Mahler and Michael C. Meyer.

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The North Allegheny school board approved a proposed budget for the 2015-16 school year that has a tax increase.

Members said, however, that they will be working before the final budget vote on June 24 to reduce or eliminate the 0.5972-mill increase. The increase would cost a homeowner with a $224,000 house an additional $133.77 per year.

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The North Allegheny School Board has approved $20.5 million in renovations for Marshall Middle School and Bradford Woods and Marshall elementary schools.

The work will include a new student drop-off driveway at Marshall Elementary, and installing security cameras, repairing masonry and replacing steps, sidewalks, flooring, doors and more, in addition to other work, at all three schools.

The board approved awarding $2.1 million in building renovation contracts for other schools.

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