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Upcoming Events
Tomorrow
5/31/2016
- HS DARE GRADUATION
10:30 AM - 11:30 AM
6/1/2016
- JR.NHS REHEARSAL
8:00 AM - 10:00 AM
- Senior Class Assembly
12:15 PM - 1:15 PM
- JR.NHS/ROGATE CEREMONY
7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
 
District Announcements
Memorial Day 2016
Memorial Day Closures
Please note, the Secaucus PSD has a one-session day 5/27 and will be closed on 5/30 and 5/31 in observance of Memorial Day.

 
JSA National
SHS JSA Tops in the Nation!
We are proud to announce that SHS' Junior State of America has been awarded the National Civic Impact Award, making them the #1 chapter in America! 
See their chapter video here. 

Congratulations to Mr. Gehm, Ms. Z. and all the students of the JSA!
 
Special Olympics
Secaucus Athletes Compete in Special Olympics
This year the SecaucusPSD participated in Special Olympics New Jersey (SONJ). SONJ is an organization dedicated to bringing pride into the lives of all involved. It is a not-for-profit organization that provides sports training and athletic competition to children and adults with intellectual disabilities.
All programs are free to registered athletes including insurance, facilities, equipment, uniforms, housing and meals for events, awards, sports, education and more. SONJ provides opportunities for children and adults with intellectual disabilities to become athletes.

On May 7, 2016 our athletes participated in the Track & Field Event located in Braddock Park in North Bergen. Athletes participated in the following events and were awarded ribbons based on their performance: Standing Long Jump, Softball Throw, and Meter Dash.

With the support of our Physical Education teacher Ms. Lynch, intern Ms. Yannetti, as well as Mr. Mimmo, School Psychologist and classroom assistants, the athletes practiced daily in anticipation for the event. We look forward to upcoming events!
   

 
JSA
SHS JSA Honored at BOE Meeting
Congratulations to the Secaucus High School Chapter of the JSA for being named named the  Ernest Andrew Rogers Award Outstanding Junior State Chapter of the Year.

Congratulations to all of our JSA Students and to advisors Mr. Gehm and Mrs. Zavorotnyaya, we are extremely proud of you for representing the school community in such an outstanding fashion!

 
Law Day
Huber 6th Grader Receives Honorable Mention
Alexandria Feil, a sixth grade student at the Huber Street School in Secaucus, was honored at the Secaucus Board of Education Meeting’s Showcase of Success this past week.  Alexandria was the recipient of a Sixth Grade Honorable Mention award through the Hudson County Law Day Contest for a poem she had written on the topic of “Justice".
 
In the photograph above, Alexandria poses for a picture with Huber Street School Principal Linda Wilhelm, Board of Education President John Gerbasio, her Dad Chris Feil, and her Mom Kerry Serverino-Feil after being presented with her certificate.
School Climate Survey
Parents/Guardians Urged to Take School Climate Survey
Please see the memo to parents from Ms. Susan Smahl, Director of Special Services and District Anti-Bullying Coordinator.

Parents and guardians of children enrolled in the Secaucus Schools are urged to take the School Climate Survey, which will give us valuable information on how our programs are working. No personal information will be collected and there is no way to link any data to your children. The survey should take about 10 minutes to complete. 

We request that you complete a survey for each school your child or children attend by 6/6/16.

Clarendon School Climate Survey for Parents
Huber Street School Climate Survey for Parents
SMS School Climate Survey for Parents
SHS School Climate Survey for Parents
New Administrators
SBOE Appoints Two New Administrators
At the Board of Education Meeting of May 19, the Board approved the hiring of two new district administrators.  Dr. Danielle Garzon was appointed the Supervisor of Elementary Schools and Testing, while Dr. Hope Blecher was approved as the District's new Director of Curriculum.

Dr. Garzon is currently employed with the Jersey City School District, where she received the prestigious honor of being named the 2015-2016 New Jersey Department of Education Governor’s Hudson County Teacher of the Year.

Dr. Blecher is currently employed by the North Plainfield School District where she is serving as the District-Wide Supervisor of English, Language Arts Literacy, Social Studies, History, Library, and Media Sciences.  

In the accompanying photograph, Dr. Garzone and Dr. Blecher are welcomed to the Secaucus School District by Board of Education President John Gerbasio and Vice President Jack McStowe.
Social Media 101
Dr. Tufaro Delivers Technology Presentation to District Parents
Dr. Thomas Tufaro, Director of Technology Education, Data Assessments and Grants, delivered a two-part presentation entitled Social Media 101 and The State of Technology at Secaucus PSD. Parents were apprised of the various  uses and potential pitfalls surrounding social media for children and given common sense strategies to keep their children safe. Additionally, parents were given an update on the various technological upgrades happening in the district designed to augment teaching and learning. 

If you were unable to attend the presentation, a copy of the presentation is located here. 
Academic Bowl
Elementary Students Prepare for County Academic Bowl
Clarendon School and Huber Street School held their annual Academic Bowl last week under the direction of Mrs. Wurst.  We are on our way to compete at The Hudson County Academic Bowl tomorrow with our five finalists and one alternate player.

  
Academic Honorees
SECAUCUS HIGH SCHOOL SALUTATORIAN AND VALEDICTORIAN HONORED AT HUDSON COUNTY ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT RECOGNITION PROGRAM
Secaucus High School Valedictorian Brandon Halpin and Salutatorian Hannah Faye Canonigo were honored at a county-wide recognition dinner at La Reggia Restaurant.  On behalf of the entire Secaucus School Community, we extend our congratulations to these outstanding students.  Both Brandon and Hannah Faye have been outstanding academic performers and role models during their illustrious time as students in the District.


Photograph: Secaucus High School Salutatorian Hannah Faye Canonigo and Valedictorian Brandon Halpin take a moment from the festivities at the Hudson County Academic Achievement Recognition Program to pose for a group photograph with their parents and school officials.  Pictured from left to right are Interim Superintendent Kenneth Knops, Hudson County Superintendent Monica Tone, Mr. Gregorio Canonigo, Mrs. Lydia Canonigo, Salutatorian Hannah Faye Canonigo, Valedictorian Brandon Halpin, Mrs. Annette Halpin, Mr. James Halpin, Board of Education President John Gerbasio, and Secaucus High School Principal Dr. Robert Berckes.
SHSFOTA2016
SHS Art Students' Talents Shine at SHSFOTA2016
SHS students enrolled in fine arts classes with Doug Depice, Carolynn DiOrio and Camille Petruzzelli worked long and hard on preparing their masterpieces for the 2016 Festival of the Arts Gallery opening on May 10, 2016. 

Students use of media runs the gamut from the traditional to the technological and includes use of paints, pencil, charcoal, photography, ceramics, computer graphics and even a bicycle. Special thanks to the teachers for their hard work, but also Mr. Petruzzelli who helped create the wood pallet walls that helps display the artwork!

To see more pictures of the student's work, go to our Facebook page (SecaucusPSD) or the Fine Arts Department Instagram account (@secaucushighschoolfinearts) #SHSFOTA2016.

The gallery is open until May 26.

  

8th Grade ESL Award Winner
SMS 8TH GRADER STUDENT IS FIRST PLACE WINNER OF WRITING CHALLENGE SCHOLARSHIP THROUGH NJTESOL-NJBE
Daniel Martinez, an eighth grade ESL student at Secaucus Middle School took first place in a state-wide writing challenge for English as a Second Language (ESL) and Bilingual students offered through the New Jersey Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages/New Jersey Bilingual Educators (NJTESOL-NJBE)   Daniel won a tablet PC and will be attending the NJTESOL awards dinner at the Hyatt Hotel in New Brunswick as the first place winner of the contest. 

In the Picture:  Secaucus Middle School student Daniel Martinez is pictured with his ESL teacher, Mrs. Christina Namendorf, who recommended him for the award.
NJCTL
SHS Teachers Invited to Prestigious Professional Development Opportunity
SHS teachers Dr. John Ennis and Mrs. Pavlina Zavorotnyaya have been personally selected by Dr. Robert Goodman, Executive Director of The New Jersey Center For Teaching and Learning (NJCTL) to participate in exclusive professional development on behalf of the NJCTL.

Dr. Ennis will be joining the CTL Physics Team which will travel to MIT and Mrs. Zavorotnyaya will be working with the CTL Mathematics Team at Phillips Academy in Andover, MA. Both teachers will be asked to utilize their expertise to assist with enhancing and aligning coursework at these educational institutions.

In the photograph SHS teachers Dr. John Ennis and Mrs. Pavlina Zayorotnyaya pose for a picture with SHS Principal Dr. Robert Berckes.
2016-2017 Calendar
SBOE Adopts 2016-2017 District Calendar
A PDF version of the calendar can be found here. 
TEOY/ESPOY
SBOE Honors Teachers and Educational Services Professionals of the Year
The SBOE honored the four schools' Teachers and Educational Services Professionals of the Year during the Board's Showcase of Success at the April 28 meeting.

The Teachers of the Year are: Kimberly Woeckener from ‪#Clarendon‬, Anna Critelli, ‪Huber‬ Street, Amanda Jones, ‪SMS‬ and Michael Vitulano, ‪SHS‬.

The honored Educational Services Professionals are Lucy Biegler, Clarendon, Zahava Pianko, Huber Street (not pictured), Nancy Jaber, SMS (not pictured) and Kathleen Gerbasio, SHS.

 
2016-2017 Advertised Budget
SBOE Approves 16-17 Budget
The SBOE has approved its operating budget for the 2016-2017 school year. A link to the pdf of the advertised budget can be found here. 
SMS PreAlgebra
Pre-Algebra Students Measure Their World
On Friday 4/22 Mrs. Demone's and Mr. Caruso's Pre-Algebra classes at SMS worked on an indirect measurement lab outside.

The 8th grade students applied what they have been learning about similarity in the classroom to the real world. They used shadows and their own heights to set up proportions and calculate the height of much taller objects such as the flagpole, the school and the softball field backstop.
Poetry Cafe
Grosso's 5th Grade Hosts Poetry Café
On April 14, 2015, Ms. Alyssa Grosso’s fifth grade class held their own Poetry Café in their classroom at Huber Street School in celebration of Poetry Month. The room was completely transformed into a café setting. Tablecloths covered the desks, tea lights, and each table was complete with a card, displaying the various poetic devices students used within their poems. The Café was a great success and the students put on an exceptional performance. In the photograph, the student poets pose for a picture with their teacher at the conclusion of the Poetry Café.
Calendar
Revised 2015/2016 School Calendar Reflects Extended Memorial Day Break

Clarendon Wax Museum
Clarendon's 2nd Grade Hosts Wax Museum
Second Grade Classes at the Clarendon School staged a biographical Wax Museum.  The second graders dressed up as living statutes of famous historical figures.  Guests visiting the wax museum could “click” a button by stepping on a circular disk, and the figures would come to life and provide the visitor with an autobiographical sketch of themselves.  Each historical wax museum figure was available to answer any questions posed to them by visitors.

1) Second grader Kaylie Bartletta, dressed up as Amelia Earhart poses for a picture with her Dad, Lance Bartletta, and Board of Education President John Gerbasio.



2) Second graders pose for a group picture with their teacher, Mrs. Anna Mongiello


3) Second graders Anaja McLymont as Ruby Bridges and Kiran Pisolkar as Clara Barton take time from their Wax Museum presentations to pose for a picture with Director of Special Services Susan Smahl.
JSA
JSA Participates in Mock BOE Meeting
On the evening of Tuesday, April 12, the Board of Education and Secaucus High School Junior State of America (JSA) Chapter held a "mock" Board of Education meeting at Huber Street School.

The purpose of the simulated meeting was for the Board to demonstrate and model the components of a Board of Education meeting with the JSA Members.In the photograph, members of the JSA and the Board of Education pose for a group picture at the conclusion of the mock Board meeting.
Rivera HoF '16
SHS Volleyball Coach Sheila Rivera Inducted into Hall of Fame

Sheila Rivera, PreK teacher at the Early Learning Center and head volleyball coach, was joined by family and coaching colleagues as she was honored Sunday, April 10 at the 2016 Coaches Hall of Fame luncheon sponsored by the New Jersey Scholastic Coaches Association in cooperation with New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association.

Coach Rivera has achieved something that is unprecedented in the state. Secaucus has won 19 NJSIAA State ‪#‎Volleyball‬ Championships andSheila was a part of every one of them. She was a player on the team that won the first 4, served as a volunteer coach for 5, was the assistant coach for 7, and finally head coach for the last three.

Her teams won 3 state and 1 sectional title in 5 state final appearances. They also won 8 county and 8 league titles during her tenure as head coach, compiling a total of 232 wins and only 42 losses. It’s no surprise that someone who lives and breathes volleyball would be named coach of the year on numerous occasions by local media outlets as well as being inducted into 3 Athletic Halls of Fame: Secaucus High School, Saint Peter's University and now the NJ Scholastic Coaches Hall of Fame.

The district is very proud and would like to extend sincere congratulations to Sheila on this prestigious honor!

Autism Awareness
Clarendon Teachers and Students Raise Money for Autism Awareness
Clarendon School is observing Autism Awareness with various activities on Fridays during April. Ms. Janet Colamarino and Ms. Lucia Abello  have organized many ways for all to participate and reach out to our community at the same time.  

Some of these fundraising activities will support Spectrum Works, a non-profit screen printing company in Secaucus that hires individuals with autism. Many of Secaucus High School’s students with autism have had an opportunity to intern and work there.

Spectrum Works designed and printed shirts for the staff and students of Clarendon School to purchase.  The shirts will be worn for a dress down day every Friday in April.  All of the proceeds - over $2,000 - was donated to Spectrum Works.

Other fundraising activities throughout the month include a pretzel and blue Gatorade sale and a blue Italian Ice sale which is made by a local ice cream shop.  With the purchase of a blue ice, each student adds a puzzle piece to a bulletin board completing a giant puzzle.  The proceeds from these activities are donated to Autism NJ.

In the photos:
Ms. Janet Colamarino and Ms. Lucia Abello, (fourth and fifth in the back row) and their students wear shirts printed by Spectrum Works to raise awareness of autism.

*Caption 2nd photo- Janet Colamarino and Lucia Abella coordinators of activities at Clarendon School in observance of Autism Awareness Month.
Memorial Day 2016
CALENDAR CHANGE: MEMORIAL DAY BREAK EXTENDED
Due to the gentle winter we've had this year, the District will be extending the Memorial Day break as follows:
5/26: One Session Day
5/27-5/31: District CLOSED
6/1: District Reopens
Please see the memo from Interim Superintendent Knops regarding this calendar change. 
Math Contest
SHS Math Students Shine in Contest
For the 2015-2016 school year SHS placed first in the Hudson County region of the New Jersey Math League. SHS also ranked as a high scoring school overall with cumulative score of 138 points. SHS Junior Jiawen Ge ranked as a high scoring student with a cumulative score of 33 points out of 36. Jiawen also scored a perfect score on four out of the six contests throughout the school year. 

Pictured are some of the top scoring SHS NJ Math League participants along with their advisor and math teacher Mr. Elassa. Left to right are:  Mr. Elassa, Nirali Patel, Vinit Parikh, Rami Atoot, Jiawen Ge, Cheng Zhong, and Waner Zheng.
3D Printing
Clarendon Students Designing for the Future
Ms. Smeyers 3D printing groups from fifth and sixth grade at Clarendon showing off their TinkerCad creations. They are designing the Space Shuttle of the future and the Clarendon Bee Mascot. Ms. Smeyers and her students plan on printing their designs using our new MakerBot 3D printer. 

  

 
Grace Returns
SPSD Welcomes Grace Yeo!
We welcome Grace Yeo back to district in her new role as School Business Administrator/Board Secretary. Interim Superintendent Knops states, "I am personally delighted to have her on our Administrative Team, and am confident the Business Office will flourish under her leadership and guidance".
SMS STEM Awards
SMS STUDENTS HONORED FOR WORK AT STEM SHOWCASE
The SBOE honored three SMS students for their achievement of being medal winners at the Jersey City Medical Center/ Barnabas Health STEM Showcase at the Liberty Science Center in Jersey City last month.
Pictured from left to right are: Mr. Robert Valente, SMS Principal; Eighth Grade Bronze Medal recipient Sri Manyata Peddinti; Seventh Grade Silver Medal winner Ergen Banja, Eighth Grade Bronze Medal recipient Eshaan Mangat, and SBOE President John Gerbasio.
Delaney
SMS' Madison Delaney Raises $5K for Cancer Research
Secaucus Middle School student Madison Delaney was honored at the Board of Education's Showcase of Success on March 24 for her altruism and fund raising in support of pediatric cancer.  Madison had her head shaved through the St. Baldrick's Foundation and has to date raised $5,000 in support of childhood cancer research. 

In the photograph she is pictured with Secaucus Middle School Principal Robert Valente, her Mom, and Board of Education President John Gerbasio.

Find out more about The St. Baldrick's Foundation here. 
SMS/SHS Smile
SMS/SHS Students Perform with Rob McClure in Smile at Bergen PAC
Students from the SMS and SHS vocal program recently had the opportunity to perform in Rob McClure: Smile at the bergenPAC (Bergen Performing Arts Center). See a clip of the performance here. Thanks to Choral Director Mr. Siafakas for supplying the video!
 
SMS/SHS Science Fair
SECAUCUS MIDDLE SCHOOL AND HIGH SCHOOL SCIENCE FAIR
Secaucus Middle and High Schools held a well received and most informative Science Fair in the school gymnasium on March 23.  Serving as judges for the student projects were a number of former school administrators, retired teachers, Board of Education Members, and two members of the New York Giants, Jay Bromley and Keri Wynn.  The accompanying pictures depict:

School and district officials and honorary judges pose for a group picture prior to the Science Fair.  Pictured from left to right are:  Interim Superintendent Kenneth Knops, New York Giant Kerry Wynn, former Secaucus High School Principal Pat Impreveduto, New York Giant Jay Bromley, Former Huber Street School Principal Peggy Firtion, Board of Education President John Gerbasio,Secaucus High School Principal Dr. Bob Berckes. and Secaucus Middle School Principal Rob Valente.

 




Mrs. Patricia Guma, Savannah Kochera, Sara Becker, and Dr. Bob Berckes pose for a group picture at the Science Fair.
Girls in Tech Symposium
SHS Students Participate in the 2016 Girls in Technology Symposium at HCCC
On March 16, 2016, four Secaucus High School students attended the “2016 Girls in Technology Symposium” along with nearly 200 female students from fourteen high schools around the county. The third annual event was held at the Hudson County Community College (HCCC) Culinary Arts Conference Center in Jersey City.

The day-long event showcased opportunities for women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) fields and the innovative contributions women are making. The students also competed in a project display contest themed Technology: The Past, Present and Future. (Read the entire story here)
STEM @ SHS
STEM Showcase Special Awards are Announced!
Congratulations to the following students for winning special awards at the ‪#‎STEM‬ Showcase held at 
Liberty Science Center on February 29, 2016:


U.S. Naval Science Special Award
  • Eshaan Mangat, Secaucus Middle School
Broadcom Masters Nominees
  • Tyler Lam, Huber Street
  • Ergen Banja, Secaucus Middle School
  • Eshaan Mangat, Secaucus Middle School
  • Sri Manyata Peddinti, Secaucus Middle School
The Broadcom Masters is a national science competition open to middle school-aged students who score in the top 10% of affiliated science fairs, such as the STEM Showcase. Students will be required to submit applications and reports in order to be eligible for further prizes. However, just being nominated is a great honor!

More information on this contest can be found here:
https://student.societyforscience.org/broadcom-masters

Congratulations to all winners!
SMS/SHS & Pi Day
SMS and SHS Students Mark Pi Day with Activities
Students from the middle and high schools celebrated Pi Day (3/14/16) with a variety of projects and activities. Pi - 3.14... is an infinite and non-repeating number that helps solve geometric problems involving circles. Teachers from both schools showed off their students' Pi-based creativity in a variety of ways. To see more images, please Like our Facebook page (SecaucusPSD) or our Twitter account (@SecaucusPSD). 
  


 
Clarendon Visits NJ Assembly
Clarendon 4th Grade Visits NJ Statehouse
Fourth Graders from ‪Clarendon‬ School traveled to Trenton to visit both the Statehouse and the Trenton Barracks as part of a field trip to enrich their study of the State of New Jersey. General Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto delighted the fourth graders with a personal and expanded visit to the chamber floor of the General Assembly while visiting the Statehouse. In the accompanying pictures the fourth graders pose with the Speaker and in the likeness of 45 Speakers!

Consumer Bowl
SHS Takes 4th Hudson County Consumer Bowl Title in 5 Years!
We are proud to announce that the SHS Consumer Bowl Team has captured it's fourth straight Hudson County Championship in five years under Coach Cherryl Bott-Melfa. The Team defeated High Tech HS (North Bergen) 160-85 in the first round, then defeated Liberty HS (Jersey City) 165-40. The Hudson County teams who participated in the competition were Secaucus HS, County Prep, High Tech HS, Ferris HS, Liberty HS and Dickinson HS.

The SHS team goes on to the the Northern Regional Competition, which will take place on April 22, 2016. 

To find out more about the Consumer Bowl, please go to http://www.njconsumeraffairs.gov/bowl

From left to right: Pierce Bolton, Kaitlyn O'Connell, Kendryck Ceballos and Robert Walshe
Miss Lee's Closet
S.A.I.L. Students Create Clothing Closet
Miss Lee’s Closet is the latest undertaking of the S.A.I.L. program. The S.A.I.L. students developed a Prom Dress Drop program several years ago. This program provided prom dresses free of charge to help students and families in need. Over the past few months, the S.A.I.L. program has been fortunate enough to receive donations from Secaucus Mayor Michael Gonnelli and Ms. Lee, which has enabled our project to expand. The SAIL students wanted to take this opportunity and run with it by creating a full clothing closet that is available to not only those struggling financially but all middle and high school students. 

Ms. Lee states, "It has never been lost on me the enormous amounts of money that students and their families spend on clothing, particularly dresses for proms, birthday parties, and other formal events. If we can help out a little, why not? We have a wonderful opportunity to turn new and gently used clothing into another community service project that serves our students and the families in the Secaucus community. The response has been nothing but positive."

S.A.I.L. students are responsible for running the closet and collecting donations. The closet is frequented by many students throughout the week and it is wonderful to see the Secaucus Middle and High School student body taking advantage of our new program. Students are extremely happy and excited with this new project. It seems to be extremely helpful all around, particularly, to those who may not have the money or time to go out and buy extravagant outfits or even casual clothes to wear on an everyday basis.

Miss Lee’s Closet has everything ranging from formal gowns, jeans, sweaters, jackets, men’s suits, skirts, casual dresses, shirts, and school uniforms. ALL students are welcome to come before school and take home any of these items free of cost. Students are encouraged to take advantage of this great program! You can follow MISSLEESCLOSET on Instagram to view some of the items available in the closet.
Secaucus Hosts Realtors Day

District Hosts Realtors Day
The district hosted a Realtors Day on Friday, March 11th for the purpose of familiarizing local realtors with the many positive attributes of the school district.  As part of the day, the realtors were presented an overview of the district, provided with district data and information, and given tours of each school by the respective Principals and PTA Presidents. 

In the accompanying photographs the Realtors and district officials pose for a group picture on the steps of Huber Street School and Secaucus High School Principal Dr. Robert Berckes provides the realtors with a visit to the school cafeteria during lunchtime.

  

SMS Students of the Month
SMS Announces Students of the Month
Congratulations to Israel Vega, Natalie Collins, Mackenzie Szabo, Carlee Hults, Madison Delaney and Zachary Pascarello who were named Secaucus Middle School Students of the Month! 
Secaucus Medals at STEM Fair
Secaucus Students Win Medals JCMC at STEM Showcase
​Out of the 12 Secaucus contestants who participated in the Jersey City Medical Center's STEM Showcase at Liberty Science Center on Monday, February 29, 8 students won awards! Congratulations to all of the participants involved. 

The winners of this showcase, in addition to the winners of the respective school-based science fairs in the district during the month of March will be honored at the District Science Fair Awards Ceremony on April 28 at 7 p.m. in the PAC.

You can read more about the winners, including a complete list award recipients and the contest itself at NJ.com.
Huber Visits Statehouse
Huber 4th Graders Visit NJ Statehouse
Fourth Grade students from the Huber Street School visited the Statehouse in Trenton as a curricular tie to their study of New Jersey in the Statehouse.  While at the Statehouse, the students were given a private visit to the General Assembly by Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto.  In the photographs the students are pictured with the Speaker and with their likenesses of the Speaker.
Read Across America
SPSD Community Participates in Read Across America
Students, faculty and members of the entire Secaucus community participated Read Across America, which according to the NEA's website is in it's 19th year. People from all aspects of our community volunteered to spend time with our district's children to read to them favorite books on March 2, which is Dr. Theodore Seuss Geisel's birthday. As the good doctor says, "You're never too old, too wacky or too wild, to pick up a book and read with a child."
 
The images are from the district's Read Across America events.
GeoBee Champs
Students Honored for Achieving School Championship in Geography Bee
The SBOE honored three school-wide recipients of the National Geography Bee at its ‪‎Showcase of Success‬ prior to the BOE on 2/25.

The honorees were Arhan Menon, the ‪‎Huber‬ Street School Champion, Ayush Agarwal the ‪Clarendon‬ School winner, and Anusha Advani, the champion from ‪‎SMS‬.

In the photographs, honoree Ayush Agarwal poses for a picture holding his certificate with Clarendon Principal Steve Viggiani and Board of Education President John Gerbasio. Honoree Anusha Advani is pictured with SMS Principal Rob Valente and Board of Education President John Gerbasio. Huber Street School winner Ahran Menon was unable to make the ceremony.

3D Rendering
Construction Project Update
As our construction is well underway, click here to see the 3D architectural rendering of the project as it was envisioned. 

Below are still shots of the architectural renderings
Showcase of Success
SHS Junior Celebrated for Mathematics Excellence
SHS Junior Akash Rana was honored with a standing ovation at the Secaucus Board of Education Meeting's Showcase of Success on 2/25 for his accomplishment of achieving a perfect score of 800 on the Mathematics section of the SAT.

In the photograph, honoree Akash Rana holds up his certificate as Secaucus High School Principal Dr. Bob Berckes, Mother Rita Rana, Father Pravin Rana, and Board of Education President John Gerbasio look on.
SHS
SHS Holds a Day of Respect, Remembrance, and Reflection
SHS held a Day of Respect, Remembrance, and Reflection on February 23.  Students were exposed to motivational speakers who overcame adversity in their lives to ultimately make the world a better place. 

In the photograph, some of the Day of Respect, Remembrance, and Reflection presenters and guests pose for a picture in between presentations.  Pictured from left to right are Brian Branco, Gary Smiley, Secaucus Mayor Mike Gonnelli, Alan Moskin, Jacy Good, Steve Johnson, General Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto, and  Mathematics Supervisor Amanda Prieto.


Here's the link to Verizon FiOS1 - New Jersey's coverage of SHS' Day of Respect, Remembrance and Reflection. 
GoMath

Educator-Led GoMath Parent Night a Success

Parents and guardians of elementary aged students in the Secaucus School District received a special evening training program on the District’s new Mathematics Series, Go Math.
 

The training was facilitated by the District’s Mathematics Supervisor, Amanda Trombetta, with assistance from the District’s Math Coaches Zaida Couto and Kristin Backiel along with Teacher Tammy Hennessy.


Left to Right: Ms. Christine Candela, Supervisor of ELA/Fine Art, Ms. Zaida Couto, Huber Math Coach, Ms. Kristin Backiel, Clarendon Math Coach, Ms. Amanda Trombetta, Supervisor of Math/Business, Ms. Tammy Hennessy, Clarendon Special Education Teacher, Dr. Daniela Riser, Supervisor of Science and Ms. Mayling Cardenas, Supervisor of Social Studies/World Language.

SAT Math Hat Trick
SHS Senior Scores Big on SAT Math
Secaucus High School Senior Vinit Parikh was honored with a standing ovation at the SBOE meeting on 2/25 for his accomplishment of achieving a “hat trick” of attaining perfect scores on three different SAT Mathematics assessments. Vinit received perfect scores of 800 on the Mathematics portion of the SAT in both June 2014 and October 2015, as well as receiving an additional perfect score of 800 on the Math Level Two Subject Test of the SAT.
In the photograph, honoree Vinit Parikh holds up his certificate as Secaucus High School Principal Dr. Bob Berckes, Vinit's mother Devanshi, and Board of Education President John Gerbasio look on.
Ulrich Sisters
AMANDA AND KRISTINA ULRICH HONORED FOR THEIR RECOGNITION AS MEMBERS OF THE SHS GIRLS BASKETBALL TEAM
Sisters Amanda and Kristina Ulrich were honored at the Secaucus Board of Education’s Showcase of Success on January 28 for their achievements and recognition as members of the Secaucus High School Girls Basketball Team.

Freshman Amanda was honored through the Bergen Record last month by being selected as the Bergen Record Female Athlete of the Week. Sister Kristina, a senior, recently achieved a major milestone by scoring her 1,000th career point.

In the photograph above, Secaucus High School Principal Dr. Bob Berckes; Amanda Ulrich, Kristina Ulrich, Bob Ulrich, Maria Ulrich, Anthony Gomez, and Board of Education President John Gerbasio pose for a group picture after the Amanda and Kristina were presented with certificates by the Secaucus Board of Education.
800s on SAT Math

SBOE HONORS SHS STUDENTS WHO RECEIVED 800s ON SAT MATH
The Secaucus Board of Education honored four students who achieved a perfect 800s on the Math portion of the SAT at last night’s Board of Education Meeting’s Showcase of Success.

SHS Principal Dr. Bob Berckes introduced each student, highlighted each pupil’s career at the high school, and stated how proud the school community was of each honoree. Board of Education President John Gerbasio then presented each student with a certificate of commendation on behalf of the Board.

In the photograph above, Secaucus High School Principal Dr. Bob Berckes; Students Kevin Ge, Ken Zhong, Ankit Patel, David Perez; and Board of Education President John Gerbasio pose for a picture after the ceremony honoring each of the four students.

Peschetti Sisters
SMS AND SHS SISTERS HONORED AT SBOE'S SHOWCASE OF SUCCESS
The Secaucus Board of Education honored sisters Gianna and Julia Peschetti at their January 29 Showcase of Success during the Board Meeting.
Seventh grader Gianna Peschetti was highlighted in an article published in the 2015 edition of Exceptional Parent (EParent) Magazine. The article highlighted how Gianna spent five days a week throughout the school year as a sixth grader at Clarendon School in Secaucus volunteering her time, being a mentor and offering assistance to others in her school, which culminated with her being a special friend to her classmates.

Clarendon School Principal Steve Viggiani, Gianna’s principal this past school year, spoke highly of Gianna’s altruism and dedication to making her classmates’ school experiences positive and productive ones.

Gianna’s older sister, Julia, currently a senior at Secaucus High School, was honored for writing the quality article and memorializing her sister’s compassion towards her classmates in the publication.

In the photograph (l to r), Secaucus High School Senior Julia Peschetti, Clarendon School Principal Steve Viggiani, Secaucus Middle School Seventh Grader Gianni Peschetti, and Board of Education President John Gerbasio pose for a picture after the Showcase of Success Ceremony.

The article is available on http://www.sboe.us courtesy of Exceptional Parent Magazine.

Geo Bee
Clarendon and Huber Street Announce National Geographic Winners
The 2016 National Geographic Bee School Finals were held at Clarendon School on 1/21 and Huber Street School on 1/22/16 under the direction of Mrs. Michele Wurst, Gifted and Talented Coordinator.

The 2016 National Geographic Bee top three of Clarendon School are:















1st Place Ayush A - Mrs. Wassong’s 5th Grade
2nd Place Arjun A - Mrs. Smith-Bonin’s 6th Grade
3rd Place Leoul M - Ms. Primavera’s 4th Grade

The top three from Huber Street are:




















1st Place Arhan M - Mr. Bonin’s 6th Grade
2nd Place Danny A - Mr. Bonin’s 6th Grade
3rd Place Ayaan M - Ms. Holsten’s 4th Grade

Ms. Wurst and Ms. Cardenas K-12 Supervisor of Social Studies pose with the school winners.

Both Ayush and Arhan, our school bee champions, will take a test to qualify to compete at the State of New Jersey level before Friday, February 5, 2016.

Congratulations to all participants and finalists! We all win because we have all learned something new!
John Halligan/Ryan's Story
Anti-bullying Advocate Delivers Powerful Address to Students and Community
International anti-bullying presenter John Halligan delivered three emotional and well-received programs to district students and parents on Wednesday, January 20. Mr. Halligan, whose son Ryan committed suicide at age 13 after enduring four years of bullying and cyberbullying, has dedicated his life to sharing “Ryan’s Story” to impressionable students and their parents.

Mr. Halligan received a standing ovation after his presentations to both middle school and high school students. An evening presentation to parents and community members was attended by an audience of approximately 100 parents and other members of our community.

In the photo: Susan Smahl, Linda WIlhelm, Interim Superintendent Ken Knops, Mayor Mike Gonnelli, Norma Hanley, Ruby Pantoliano, John Halligan, Kathy O'Connell, Dr. Bob Berckes, Rob Valente, Linda Diemer, Steve Viggiani, Dr. Tom Tufaro and Lou Giele
SBOE Recognized
Secaucus Council Honors the Secaucus Board of Education at January 12 Council Meeting in Support of School Board Recognition Month
The Secaucus School Board of Education was honored in support of School Board Recognition Month in New Jersey by the Secaucus Mayor and Council at the Council Meeting on January 12.

The Mayor and Council read a resolution that commended the work and mission of the local school board and recognized the dedication of the Board of Education to the community and its children. The resolution further commended the positive working relationship between the municipal government and the local school board.
Pictured below is a group photograph of the Secaucus School Board and the Secaucus Council after the reading of the resolution.
Meet and Greet/Redistricting Notice
Notice of Special Board of Education Meeting
The Secaucus Board of Education will be holding a Special Meeting on Monday, January 18, 2016 in Huber Street's Multipurpose Room at 7 p.m.

The format will be a "meet and greet" session with the board members. Additionally, there will be an open discussion regarding the elementary school re-districting as well as other matters. 
Refreshments will be served. The official legal notice is available here. 
Smartwatches
Smartwatches in the Classrooms
Parents: Did you get your student a new smart watch? If so, please review Policy 2363 with them and discuss the device's use while at school. 
2016 SBOE

Meet the 2016 Secaucus Board of Education
The Secaucus Board of Education held their annual Reorganization Meeting this past Tuesday evening, January 5, 2016. Newly elected Board Members Joan Cali, Louis Giele, and Norma Hanley were sworn in by Interim Business Administrator Ed Appleton. John Gerbasio was re-elected Board of Education President and Jack McStowe was elected Vice-President, both by unanimous votes.

Pictured below is the 2016 Secaucus Board of Education. Top row, left to right: Joan Cali, Vice President Jack McStowe, Interim School Business Administrator/Board Secretary Ed Appleton, Norma Hanley, and Louis Giele. Seated: Lance Bartletta, Ruby Pantoliano, President John Gerbasio, Joseph Lewis, and Kathy O’Connell.

 
Hoverboards Banned
Hoverboards Prohibited in Secaucus Schools
In light of the recent fires, accidents and other negative issues surrounding devices known as "hoverboards", Interim Superintendent Knops has banned the devices in all school facilities. Please see his December 30, 2015 memo here. 
Revised Testing Scores
NJDOE Revises Testing Graduation Requirement Cut Scores
On January 7, 2016, the NJDOE released a memo that adjusted the testing requirements for high school graduation, specifically for those students who took the PSAT10 or PSAT/NMSQT as offered in October 2015. The memo also alludes to changes that will take place after the redesigned SAT is released in March 2016. 

The entire January 7 memo can be found here.
Clarendon Geo Bee
Clarendon Announces Geo Bee Prelim Winners
The Preliminary 2016 National Geographic Bee was held at Clarendon School on 1/14/16 and 1/15/16. Congratulations to our 13 finalists from grades 4, 5 and 6.  These students will compete on 1/21/16 at the 2016 National Geographic Bee School Finals held at Clarendon School.  Our school bee champion will take a test to qualify to compete at the State of New Jersey level.

Grade 4 Finalists: Chloe Lin, Vatsal D, Gabriela R, Leoul M and Param P.

Grade 5 Finalists: Saloni S, Jarrod L, Ayush A and Aarti A


Grade 6 Finalists: Benjamin R, Eva C, Thomas M and Arjun A
PARCC Presentation
2015 School- and District-Level PARCC Data Presented
At last night's Board of Education meeting, Dr. Thomas Tufaro, Director of Technology, Data Assessments and Grants and District Testing Coordinator gave a presentation on the District's and the schools' 2015 PARCC performance. 
A PDF version of the presentation can be found here.
A video recap of the presentation can be found here
SMS Character SOTM
SMS Announces Inaugural Good Character Student of the Month Recipients
For the new year, SMS has started a Student of the Month based on good character.
Every month, students will be nominated by teachers or staff members because they observed an act of kindness or being an overall positive student.
Here are January's recipients:
Jamling Lama (7th grade), Daniel Martinez-Zamora (8th grade), Danielle Marnell (7th grade), Carmelina Sanci (7th grade), and Shana Coggins (7th grade)

Congratulations everyone!
HIB Scores Announced
SPSD Announces HIB Self-Assessment Scores for 2014-2015
According to the Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act of 2011, all school districts must annually engage in a self assessment to gage performance in preventative and responsive measures to incidents of Harassment, Intimidation and Bullying (HIB). Out of 8 possible criteria, each school in the Secaucus Public School District individually scored a 76 out of 78 possible points. Subsequently, the district scored a 76 out of 78. The official document is attached here. 

For more information regarding the NJDoE's responses to HIB, please see a November 24, 2015 memo from Assistant Commissioner Susan Martz and an FAQ the NJDOE has developed
Gianna and Cameron

Secaucus Alumna Publishes Article
SHS student Julia Peschetti tells the story of her sister Gianna's relationship with Cameron in this amazing article printed in EP - Exceptional Parent's December 2015 edition.

For more, go to http://www.eparent.com. The entire Secaucus community is proud of these students and their accomplishments!

Read the entire article here. 

 

PARCC Presentation
State PARCC Data Presented
Dr. Thomas Tufaro, Director of Technology Education, Data Assessment and Grants and District Testing Coordinator presented a slideshow discussing statewide PARCC scores. A copy of the presentation can be found here.
After all the PARCC data has been received and analyzed, Dr. Tufaro plans to give an additional presentation on district and school-level PARCC data as part of his annual Assessment of Student Performance Report at a board meeting in the near future.
Parents seeking information on how to interpret their student's score reports can go to http://www.understandthescore.org. 

 
SMS GeoBee

2016 8th Grade Geo Bee Champion Crowned
SMS hosted its annual 8th Grade Geography Bee on 1/8/2016. Each class sends representatives to compete in answering questions about World Geography. Each SMS Social Studies teacher sends at least two team representatives.

Mr. Innis, Ms. Jones, Mr. Somerset, Ms. Kapusnik, and Ms. Castelli each prepared their students. So many students performed extremely well, but two stood out above the rest.

In the end, Anushka outlasted Sebastian to win the competition. Congratulations to all who participated, and in particular to Anushka. Her hard work and determination were evident in how well prepared she was.

Pictured L to R: Ms. Kapusnik SMS Social Studies Teacher, S. Flood, A. Advani and Ms. Cardenas, Supervisor of Social Studies.

PFI Transition
SPSD Switches to PayForIt.Net for Lunch Payment System
Attention parents/guardians. Beginning January 4, 2016, the SPSD will begin using PayForIt.net (PFI) as our lunch payment and accounting system. PFI is a Secure Online Payment system, which enables parents to pay fees and fund accounts quickly and easily online. PFI also allows parents to review lunch purchases, opt into and manage email reminders about their student's accounts, and set thresholds to automatically replenish lunch accounts.

You will need your student's school ID number, which is available on the Realtime Parent Portal.

Please see the attached flyer for account set up instructions and other information.

For your convenience PFI has moblie
Apple and Android apps available so you can monitor your student's account from any web-enabled iOS or Android device. You can download the Apple App here and the Android App here. Data rates may apply.

Note: All balances from the current system will be automatically transferred to PFI. To continue to fund your child's account online, you must set up a PFI account.


 
Before Care
Elementary Before Care Program Beginning February 1
Please see the attached memo from Mr. Ken Knops, Interim Superintendent, regarding the new Before Care Program offered through the Town of Secaucus.

Services will begin February 1, 2016 from 7:00 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. at Huber Street and Clarendon schools. The cost will be $100 per child per month.

For more information, please contact Karen Pero at 201-330-2077.
PARCC Cut Scores
PARCC Cut Scores for HS Students Released
Attention HS Parents: The NJDOE just released "cut scores" - i.e., scores that determine proficiency for students who took PARCC ELA 9, 10 and 11 and PARC Algebra I, Geometry and Algebra 2. A copy of the approved assessments and their corresponding cut scores is attached. 
Huber GeoBee
Huber Announces Geography Bee Finalists
The Preliminary 2016 National Geographic Geography Bee was held at ‪Huber‬ Street School on 1/13/2016. Congratulations to our 13 finalists from Grades 4, 5 and 6. These students will compete on 1/22/2016 in the National Geographic Bee School Finals held at Huber Street School. Huber's Bee champion will take a test to quality to compete at the State of New Jersey level.


Grade 4 Finalists: Ayaan M, Arnav P, Andrew K and Ronan Y


Grade 5 Finalists: Josiah S, Krushay B, Aashi M and Yazan K


Grade 6 Finalists: Danny A, Anas K, Arhan M, Athanasia C and Alexandria F
PARCC Tutorials
PARCC Provides Tutorial Sites for Students
In an effort to assist students as they prepare for the spring 2016 assessments, PARCC encourages the use of their tutorial sites, which are located below:

Student Tutorials
Sample Items 
Practice Tests

PARCC testing window for Grades 3-8 will open on April 5 and close on May 13. The testing window for Grades 9-11 will open on April 11 and close on May 20. Schools are developing their own schedules grade- and subject-specific schedules.

Families planning on refusing assessment should do so in writing to their child's principal by January 29, 2016.

 
Clarendon T/EOY
Clarendon School Announces Educators of the Year
Mr. Steve Viggiani, Principal of Clarendon School is proud to announce that Ms. Lucy Biegler (left), Literacy Coach and Ms. Kim Woeckener (right), Science Teacher - have been named Clarendon School's Educational Services Professional of the Year and Teacher of the Year, respectively

Meet Ms. Biegler
Ms. Biegler has been working at Clarendon School for 23 years. She taught Pre-School, Kindergarten, Fourth Grade and Third Grade prior to becoming the Literacy Coach. 

Ms. Biegler has a Masters Degree in Reading Specialization, a Principal's Certificate, an Orton Gillingham Certificate from the Multi-Sensory Institute and is currently working on her practicum to receive her Dyslexia Certificate. 

Meet Ms. Kimberly Woeckener
Ms. Woeckener has been teaching for 24 years. She began her career teaching third grade for one year in Texas before moving to Secaucus. Ms. Woeckener started at Clarendon School 22 years ago teaching Science and Art. She later moved to  first grade before being appointed to her current position as the elementary Science teacher.  Ms Woeckener has a Masters Degree in Education. 

Congratulations Ms. Biegler and Ms. Woeckener!
Financial Aid Night
Financial Aid Information Night
Attention parents of Juniors and Seniors SHS hosted a Financial Aid information night on 12/9/15. Dorothy Gilliard, retired collegiate financial aid director discussed FASFA and the changes involved with that program.
Presentation discussed at this event.. click here
Also, for more info please visit http://fasfa.ed.gov.
SMS ESPOY & TOY
Announcing the SMS' Gov's Educators of the Year
Secaucus Middle School is proud to announce the winners of the 2015-2016 Governor’s Educators of the Year Awards. There are two awards given out each year; the Educator of the Year and the Educational Services Professional of the Year.

Ms. Amanda Jones, SMS Educator of the Year SMS' Educator of the Year is Ms. Amanda Jones who has been teaching History at the Middle School since 2009. Additionally, she’s served as an advisor to eight different committees and clubs. Ms. Jones is a Google Certified Teacher and has used those skills to train our Middle School students and teachers on how to use Google Apps for Education.

Ms. Jones is the co-author of an interdisciplinary book combining History and Art. She was given the responsibility of presenting the book during the 2014 NJEA Convention in Atlantic City, NJ.
In addition to her wonderful classroom activities and lessons, Ms. Jones is also the head coach of the Secaucus High School varsity softball team and has written multiple different curricula for our school district and Hudson County.

Ms. Nancy Jaber, LDT-C, SMS Ed Services Professional of the Year
The Educational Services Professional of the Year is awarded to Ms. Nancy Jaber. Ms Jaber works as a case manager in the Middle School Child Study Team and serves as a Learning Disabilities Teacher Consultant for both the Middle and High School.

Ms. Jaber served as a teacher of the handicapped in middle school, earned her Master’s Degree in Special Education, and was the Inclusion Specialist for the entire District of Hoboken.
With Nancy leading the charge, Secaucus Middle School students will participate in the Special Olympics. Thanks to Ms. Jaber’s efforts, SMS students will be able to compete in athletic contests without fear of judgment or loss.

SMS is fortunate to have such hard-working, compassionate professionals like Amanda and Nancy. Congratulations and thank you for your dedication to our students.

In the photo left: Ms. Nancy Jaber, right: Ms. Amanda Jones
Interim Superintendent Announced
Welcome Interim Superintendent Ken Knops
The Secaucus Board of Education is pleased to announce that they have appointed Mr. Ken Knops as Interim Superintendent.

Mr. Knops, who
 will formally assume his duties on Monday November 30, 2015, is highly regarded in the educational community and brings a history of success in his previous school districts. SBOE President states, Mr. Knops "will be an asset in our continuing efforts to improve the education of the students in our community".

In the photo: Left to Right: SBOE Trustee Ms. Ruby Pantoliano, SBOE President Mr. John Gerbasio, Interim Superintendent Mr. Ken Knops, SBOE Vice President Mr. Joe Lewis, SBOE Trustee Ms. Kelli D'Addetta and SBOE Trustee Mr. Jack McStowe. 
SHS Teacher of the Year

Mr. Michael Vitulano, Secaucus High School Teacher of the Year

Mr. Vitulano is a 1984 graduate of Secaucus High School. He then graduated from Virginia Military Institute in May 1988 with a Bachelor Arts in Economics. After graduation, Mr. Vitulano was commissioned as a Second Lt. in the United States Marines Corps.

A proud veteran, Mr. Vitulano served on Active Duty in Camp Lejeune, NC from 1989-1992. He participated in Operation Desert Storm during the 1990-1991 Persian Gulf War.

Upon his return, Mr. Vitulano graduated from St. Peter's University in 1998 with a Master of Arts in degree Education. He later graduated from New Jersey City University in 2003 with a Master of Arts in Math Education. He holds several NJ certificates including ESL, Mathematics and Supervisor.

Mr. Vitulano has taught mathematics in grades 9 through 12 at SHS since 2000. Additionally, he is an assistant coach for the SHS varsity football team and outdoor track and field team.

Congratulations Mr. Vit!

SHS ESPOY
Mrs. Kathy Gerbasio, SHS' Educational Services Professional of the Year

Mrs. Gerbasio graduated from St. Francis School of Nursing in 1978 with a Diploma - RN. She then became a staff nurse at St. Michaels's Medical Center in Newark where she worked in the Recovery Room and as a Surgical ICU nurse. Ms. Gerbasio then became a staff nurse, Head Pediatric Nurse and a Nursing Supervisor in St. Francis. Later, she worked for many years in the Recovery Room (PACU)/Endoscopy. Afterward, she worked at Port Authority of NY & NJ as Chief Nurse at Journal Square Transportation Center and was there for the 9/11 tragedy.

Mrs. Gerbasio Graduated Bloomfield College 2005 with BSN and received her School Nurse/Teacher of Health Certification from Felician College in 2007. Graduated Felician College 2011 with Masters in Education.

After receiving these certifications, she Worked Hoboken School District for a year. She has been employed in the Secaucus School district for eight years as the School Nurse at Secaucus Middle and High School.

Outside of school, Mrs. Gerbasio is President Secaucus Board of Health and Member of Secaucus Emergency Fund.

Congratulations Mrs. Gerbasio!

Elementary Brochure
SPSD Releases Brochure on Elementary Programs
The SPSD recently produced a 6-panel brochure that highlights some of the excellent programs in our elementary program. It can be downloaded in its entirety here.
Mayor Reads to Kindergarteners
Mayor Gonnelli Reads at Kindergarten Bed and Breakfast Day
Kindergarten students at Huber Street School had a great time on Bed and Breakfast Day. Students in Mrs. Jaeger's Kindergarten class also had the pleasure of hearing a book read by Mayor Michael Gonnelli. The book, Merry Christmas Big Hungry Bear, is about receiving a special gift. In keeping with the theme, Mayor Gonnelli presented each student with a gift. Thank you Mayor Gonnelli for being so thoughtful.
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