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State Reveals its Stance on Fields of Dreams Plan

However, BOE opts not to reveal letter's contents—yet.

The much-debated Fields of Dreams high school turf field proposal could be a step closer to resolution. At Thursday evening's Parsippany Board of Education meeting, President Frank Calabria announced the state Department of Education's opinion of the plan finally arrived in the form of a letter at the end of the business day.

As to whether the state gives the controversial project a yea or nay, Calabria woud not say. 

If the state's answer is yes, and the school board agrees, the next move would belong to the Township Council, whose members have already stated their support for the plan to at and .

If the DOE letter contains the answer no, supporters of the plan, which also would have the BOE cede 51 percent of its control of the ball fields to the township. 

There is a third possibility: The state's decision—one made after the plan was reviewed by education officials and the attorney general—could be to allow the board to make up its own mind.

Calabria would not offer a reason as to why the board refused to reveal the letter's contents to the public.

"People will just file an [Open Public Records Act] request for it [Friday]," he said.

The until it has done its due diligence and researched the matter thoroughly.

At the same time, Mayor James Barberio, a vocal supporter of the project, has said he is anxious to see what the state has to say about the plan.

The DOE was asked by the school board to rule on the idea of creating a conservation easement, which would give the town majority ownership interest in the fields. That condition would have to be in effect in order for the town to go ahead with the FOD plan, according to Township Attorney John Inglesino.

The BOE meeting, which kicked off with student achievement awards, took place at Par Hills High School.

In other business, the board gave preliminary approval to three policy changes recommended by its Policy Committee.

One change to Policy 7250 would stipulate that naming a school or educational facility in honor of a deceased or retired school district staffer, BOE member or town resident could not take place sooner than three years after the death or retirement of the proposed honoree.

The second, Policy 9180, would be changed to state that school volunteers must be approved by the BOE upon the recommendation of the superintendent of schools. The amendment also would clarify that volunteers must work under the direction and supervision of "appropriately certified or licensed" staff.

The third, Policy 9181, would establish guidelines and requirements for co-curricular athletic and activity volunteers, which includes sports coaches and organizational advisers. If passed, this change would mandate criminal background checks for anyone who volunteers in school on a regular basis.

Having been approved on their first readings, the proposed policy changes must survive a second reading before they can go into effect.

VietNam Vet May 30, 2012 at 03:04 AM
Monica, it sounds like you really believe what these people, like Calabria is telling the truth, he needs to be voted out along with Neglia and Orme, she is one of the worst ones on the board besides Mancuso and Orthwein, Neglia they need to go. I thought the board already made their decision on this matter and was going to take full responsibility for the maintenece of these fields. If they change their minds here, it gives the mayor an on spot to jump in with his cocamame plan.
Monica Sclafani May 30, 2012 at 03:47 AM
Mr. Brown - Your response to this article (dated April 20th) is a little late. Much has happened since then. Please read the number of articles that followed this one on the FOD. Perhaps you won't be so confused. I do however disagree with you about who should be sitting on the BoE. I like that these BoE members (Dr. Calabria, Mrs. Orme, Mrs. Orthwein, Mr. Neglia and Mr. Mancuso) come to the meetings prepared and ready to do business. I like that they can give comprehensive reports on their committee meetings. And last, but not least, I like the fact that they are there to support, question and improve upon how our children are educated. That is why I voted for them and why I would do so again.
VietNam Vet May 30, 2012 at 03:59 AM
And Monica, it because of people like you that we had the problems with the money grubing Seitz, which was the cause of all the people in mention, thats why I will make everyone aware of this to get rid of these idiots who tried to go around the Gov. mandate. They tried to get around the Gov. and got caught and opened the town up to all kinds of problems and cause us a bundle in legal fees and is still costing us because the greedy Seitz will not give back the $ 38,000 he has been overpaid because of Mancuso and the others. Seitz says we do this for the Kids, thats a joke, this is what he is teaching the kids, to be crooks and cause the townspeople all kinds of trouble and tax dollars that they don't have right now, but he is being GREEDY!!!!!
Monica Sclafani May 30, 2012 at 02:07 PM
"People like me..."? Really. "Money grub(b)ing" - "greedy" - Dr. Seitz has been called these names many times over the past year. Mr. Brown - I have asked many people with your point of view the following question and they have taken a step back from this train of thought (Pat Petacchia being the only exception). I have a different perspective. Take likes and dislikes out of the equation and answer this - If you, personally, were offered a contract for $230,000 plus by your employer, would you refuse it? If you signed a contract and then it was rescinded, are you "money grub(b)ing" and "greedy" when you sue your employer to stand by the contract you signed in good faith? This has nothing to do with what anyone is "teaching the kids"; it's business. Mrs. Sclafani
VietNam Vet May 31, 2012 at 05:21 AM
First of all Mrs Sclafani, let me say that money is not everything in my world, maybe it is in yours. Second, I wouldn't have tried to coerce the stupid Board President {Mancuso} to go around the Governors back in order to get the contract that I want, all at the expence of the kids and the taxpayers, especially in hard times like this. Maybe you would do things like that where you come from, but not ME. Mancuso did this along with Orme, Orthwein, Neglia and Calabria and the others who were voted out. They did care that this was a crooked thing to do to the town, the school or the taxpayers who pay this jerks salary. He is out for money and doesn't care how he gets it or who gets hurt by it. Maybe you are the same way but not me, I don't have the heart to stick it to hard working taxpayers, I don't need a fortune to live on, as long as I can pay my bills and I don't have anyone looking for money and I can live with myself, thats all that is important to me. This jerk did this behind everyones back and is still showing what he is made of, NOTHING!!!!!! He and you all should be ashamed of yourselves for just thinking of yourselves.

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