By NANETTE LoBIONDO GALLOWAY
MARGATE – Board of Education President Cathy Horn May 10 excused herself from the dais and turned her gavel over to Vice-president Joel Frankel to fill her role until a new president is appointed at the board’s May 16 reorganization meeting.
Horn pledged to continue her long-standing support of the Margate school district in a different capacity – as a city commissioner. Horn will take the oath of office Tuesday afternoon, along with her running mates Michael Collins and Maury Blumberg, who will be serving his fifth consecutive term on the board.
“I hope you all believe the school district is in much better shape now than when we began this process 10 years ago,” an emotional Horn said before she excused herself.
Frankel called her resignation “bittersweet.”
“We started this 10 years ago together, and you’re off to bigger and better things. I hope you continue to look out for us,” Frankel said.
Superintendent Audrey Becker said Horn demonstrated “outstanding leadership” during her tenure on the school board.
“She’s made the district better and stronger. We will be forever grateful. She has impacted a lot of children over that time,” Becker said. “We will miss her, but we are still thankful she will be on city government and support our schools and our children.”
In other business, Becker reported that the ongoing roof replacement at the Eugene A. Tighe Middle School is nearing completion.
The work was funded through a $6 million school facilities improvement bond approved by the Board of Commissioners two years ago. To offset costs, the district is waiting to hear if it has been approved for a state ROD (Regular Operating District) grant, which provides up to 40% of the cost of eligible facilities projects for districts.
“This building will be solid for many years to come,” Becker said.
She also said the district is continuing its effort to have an electronic information sign installed in front of the Tighe School.
“It will be a great addition to the front of the building and help with community communications,” she said.
The district is also currently holding its online kindergarten round-up. Parents with 5-year-olds are asked to contact the school to enroll their children before the start of the next school year in September. Having early registrations allows the district to plan classroom setups and provide proper staffing.
The district is also promoting its tuition-based attendance for non-resident children. Parents are asked to apply online so the district can determine availability for classroom placements. Parents will be interviewed, and children will be screened to determine if the district can fulfill the child’s needs.
“It’s nice to get those new parents and families into our school system,” Becker said.
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