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De-Leveling, Charter Schools and Convenience Stores

Oh what a night in the two towns! Public meetings abounded.

It was a busy night for public meetings in Maplewood and South Orange on Monday, May 16.

Here are some of the highlights. Each item will get its own special story coming soon:

  • Ali Enterprises . Look for construction this summer of a new 7-Eleven store across the street from Columbia High School. The variance passed with two dissenters (Larrier and Kashtan). Patch correspondent Alexandra Birnbaum said the meeting was long and some members of the public impassioned, with one woman standing up and yelling at the zoning board as they were about to vote.
  •  after winning election last week by 14 votes over his opponent. Maplewood Mayor Vic DeLuca told Patch on Monday that he would be meeting with Torpey on Friday morning, May 20. Hey, shared services wait for no man....
  • The South Orange-Maplewood School District presented very, very, very, very preliminary results of the "leveling up" or combination of Levels 3 and 4 in 7th grade science, social studies and English language arts this year. The preliminary results are very, very positive but of limited meaning, said Superintendent Brian Osborne. No action to de-level 8th grade was proposed or acted on at the meeting.
  • The board of education passed two resolutions related to charter schools. The first (Res. 2757) authorized the superintendent to send a recommendation to the the State Commissioner of Education Christopher Cerf regarding the charter school applications (the recommendation was not positive); the second (Res. 2759) was in support of the , calling for local voters to have a voice in deciding the fate of charter schools in their districts, if those districts are predominantly funded by local taxes.

Stay tuned for coming stories with more details.

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