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New legislation would clarify the length of Terms for Schools Trustees when the annual school board election is moved from November to April


the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, New legislation from Trenton sponsored by Rep. Louis Greenwald [D]would clarify the length of Terms for Schools Trustees when the annual school board election is moved from November to April to give taxpayers a chance to vote on School budgets .

Continue reading New legislation would clarify the length of Terms for Schools Trustees when the annual school board election is moved from November to April
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Reader says Ridgewood BOE Needs to regain Public Trust

” Ridgewood school district is great, but recent increases in Budget driven by employee medical benefits and special ed. Meanwhile school rankings are dropping compared to competitors.
I know very little about educating kids except that it’s an extremely tough job. However I do know quite a bit about budgeting. It’s imperative to always question how $ is spent, otherwise it will be spent with less care than warranted. Voting no therefore makes sense in this case, as the board did not address concerns posed above.
Many parents defend the educators by questioning the no vote, but this is not a educators vs parents story. Rather it’s an action point for BoE to regain public trust by acknowledging raised issues and proposing solutions. I doubt there’s a resident who wishes bad upon our great educators, so let’s not confuse the issues. “

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Ridgewood Schools 2019-2020 $111,646,751 Budget

The slide portion of the presentation — reflecting Board-approved financial revisions — may be viewed here.

Following a presentation and discussion, the Board approved a Resolution for adoption of the 2019-2020 Proposed Preliminary Budget for Submission to the Executive County Superintendent of Schools. as follows:

The General Fund Tax Levy is $96,014,943 for the ensuing School Year: (2019-2020).

Continue reading Ridgewood Schools 2019-2020 $111,646,751 Budget
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Ridgewood School Board Reviews 2019-2020 Proposed Preliminary Budget of $111 Million


the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, Dr. Fishbein reviewed the schedule for the state aid numbers from Trenton, which will follow the governor’s budget address on March 5. Accordingly, the March 4 Board meeting will be moved to March 11, with an additional meeting on March 8 at 5 p.m. if needed.

Business Administrator Antoinette Kelly reviewed the basics of budgeting and the big-picture areas of the RPS budget (Special Programs, healthcare costs, staffing, security/technology, capital projects, revenue, appropriations). The slide portion of the presentation, which is posted on the district website, may be viewed here

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First Coffee & Conversation of the school year is today October 10th!

Dan Fishbein 10

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, First Coffee & Conversation of the school year is today October 10th. Residents are invited for casual conversation with the Board of Education and Superintendent Dan Fishbein on Wednesday night, October 10. The coffee will be brewing at the Education Center, 49 Cottage Place, from 7-8:30 p.m. for the first of two Coffee and Conversation nights this school year. Residents are invited to drop by with questions, suggestions and concerns about school-related topics of interest.

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Parents See Higher Back-to-School Costs This Year

back to school

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, It’s back-to-school time again, and parents are expecting to open their wallets wider this year to prepare. In a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 42% of American Adults with school-aged children plan to spend more on school clothing and back-to-school supplies than they did a year ago. Just 22% anticipate that they will spend less, while 35% expect to spend about the same amount. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

The survey of 1,000 American Adults was conducted on August 8-9, 2018 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.

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We have a Race for the Ridgewood School Board


August 2,2018

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, looks like Ridgewood and Glen Rock will  both have contested school board races in the 2018 . As previously reported on the Ridgewood blog Monday July 30th was the deadline for candidates to file to run for a board seat in November.

In the Village of Ridgewood, there is a contested race for the one three-year term. Cristopher Kaufman  has taken up the challenge ,running against incumbent President of the BOE Vincent Loncto .

Loncto a former chief financial officer was sworn in as the Boards choice in 2011 after board member Charles Reilly resigned earlier that year. Loncto was picked as a replacement to finish out Reilly’s term because of his strong financial background.

Kaufman we are told is running on the “Commitment-Understanding-Respect” slogan.

In Glen Rock, five people are currently vying for three, three-year terms. The candidates running are: Sharon Scarpelli, Bryon Torsiello, Gregory S. Franz, Robert C. Scherer, and Alisa Svider.

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Ridgewood’s Coming Battle With Forced Over-development

CBD high density housing

April 7,2018

the staff of the Ridgewood

Ridgewood NJ, Fair share housing is driving all the high density housing in Bergen County and the rest of the state ,destroying neighborhoods and communities in their wake. . Anyone who is saying I am progressive and I want to run for higher level office in NJ, and at the same time saying “I will oppose” high density development, is not being honest with voters. This and the “rainbow flag” is the only progressive cause where they can show their voting record in Ridgewood to gain a ticket for higher office in NJ. This is exactly with Harwin’s mentor Paul Aronsohn  did in 2008 and what a mess that made.

Fair Share Housing using the “Mount laurel Doctrine”  clams to be helping working families but instead seems to be the DEVEOPERS BEST FRIEND. Forced over development creates more demand for police, fire, schools, roads ,sewers ,electric and water. , Often over whelming the infrastructure of the target town.

The back ground ,the New Jersey Supreme Court, in Mount Laurel I (1975) and Mount Laurel II (1983), declared that municipal land use regulations that prevent affordable housing opportunities for the poor are unconstitutional and ordered all New Jersey municipalities to plan, zone for, and take affirmative actions to provide realistic opportunities for their “fair share” of the region’s need for affordable housing for low and moderate-income people. Peter J. O’Connor, founder and Executive Director of Fair Share Housing Center, was one of three attorneys who brought the original Mount Laurel litigation.

The Mount Laurel Doctrine, which prohibits economic discrimination against the poor by the state and municipalities in the exercise of their land use powers, was the first case of its type in the nation and is widely regarded as one of the most significant civil rights cases in the United States since Brown v. Board of Education (1954). The Mount Laurel Doctrine today is a cornerstone of land use courses in all of our nation’s law schools.

In 1985, the New Jersey Legislature, in direct response to the Mount Laurel decisions, enacted the Fair Housing Act, which created the Council on Affordable Housing (COAH) to assess the statewide need for affordable housing, allocate that need on a municipal fair share basis, and review and approve municipal housing plans aimed at implementing the local fair share obligation.

 The pressure will be on the Village of Ridgewood because Ridgewood is embarking on the development of a new Village Master Plan to replace the current, outdated document which is about 35 years old. A Master Plan encompasses all zoning laws and regulations that shaped the Village into the community it is today. From downtown development to the allowable property setbacks in everyone’s neighborhoods, the document is critical in maintaining the character of the Village. Our goal is to allow for smart development that doesn’t overwhelm streets and neighborhoods while supporting a vibrant and healthy Central Business District.

A new Village Master Plan document will guide Ridgewood’s development 40 plus years into the future making it critically important for trusted, experienced Council members to be active participants. Council members with a proven track record of protecting resident property values, Ridgewood neighborhoods, and the character of the Village we call home. Mayor Knudsen is the most experienced Council member in the area of Municipal Land Use making her participation important to the future of the Village. Experienced Council members with a comprehensive understanding of Municipal Land Use patterns, development and zoning, will serve the community best as we begin the exciting Master Plan process.

Imagine the Ridgewood Water issues and traffic issues in the Village as well as a major expansion of an already enormous Ridgewood Schools Budget of $110,000,000 ! Therefore it bears repeating that this election is key!
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Reader says Not having to place the school budget before the voters seems to mean that they now think they can do anything

Ridgewood Police at RHS

file photo by Boyd Loving

Not having to place the school budget before the voters seems to mean that they now think they can do anything they want as there is no way to vote the budget down. That was a sneaky way to get control when all the town wanted was to save some money and get more voters out by combining the school board with a general election

Regular Public Meeting 
February 5 2018 7:30 PM to 10:00 PM
Location Board Room, 3rd Floor, Education Center

Board Announcements

2018 Official Election Results

Candidates for Board – Three Year Term
Sheila Brogan: 2,766
Christina Krauss: 2,394
Personal Choice: 53

Total School Election Votes Cast: 7,175

2017-2018 School Calendar is Approved

Click here to open the 2017-2018 School Calendar, approved by the Ridgewood Board of Education on March 7, 2016.

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Reader says Ridgewood Residents have never had a tax increase they didn’t like


Yes , everyone payes taxes but it is the long time residents who are burdened with the annual tax increases. Were you around when Ridgewood had the bright idea of adding a pool to the high school so the snowflakes did not have to travel to the YMCA? Fortunately, common sense prevailed and the pool was voted down. Not everyone has a bottomless bank account.
Take a look at the curriculum and see where some non-essential classes could be eliminated.
The all-knowing Board of Education eliminated shop class and an auto mechanic class a number of years ago because the residents thought these classes were below “Ridgewood educational standards ” and “decreasing enrollment”. These career paths can lead to financial independence as young adults. But I digress…

Final thoughts…Ridgewood never had a tax increase they didn’t like and they definitely don’t believe in the term ” budget neutral”.