HUDSON—Automatic college acceptances, school shootings and a canceled Regents exam received attention at the Hudson City School District (HCSD) Board of Education meeting June 7. At the same meeting, Derek Reardon was designated principal of Hudson High School (See “Hudson taps Reardon…” June 9, Page 3)article). June 7 was the first meeting as Board members for new members Kjirsten Gustavson and Calvin Lewis.
Superintendent Lisamarie Spindler announced that all Hudson High School juniors have been accepted into Columbia-Greene Community College, starting September 2023, provided they graduate from high school. Though they can opt to go to a different college or follow a different path, at least one college has accepted them. Therefore, all students in Hudson’s Class of 2023—“whether their diploma is Regents, local or CDOS (Career Development and Occupational Studies)—will have an opportunity to go to college,” Dr. Spindler said.
Earlier in the day Dr. Spindler announced this to juniors at an assembly with C-GCC President Carlee Drummer and Provost George Timmons.
Jacob Hromada, student representative for the 2021-22 school year, had a parting suggestion for the board: get better training to prevent casualties in active shooter incidents. This includes training the staff. Mr. Hromada also pointed out where a school building has glass that is not bullet proof and entrances where people can sneak in.
All students in Hudson’s Class of 2023, ‘whether their diploma is Regents, local or CDOS, will have an opportunity to go to college.’
Superintendent of Schools Lisamarie Spindler
Hudson City School District
He reminded those present that he had first first made his suggestion in December after a tragic school shooting in Michigan. Now, “It’s awful to see that shooting in Texas. It’s too deadly not to have” more active shooter training.
Dr. Spindler said she had met with county officials about this. They examined the school, she said.
In a related topic, Dr. Spindler reported that the state Education Department had canceled the American History regents, because some of its content could further upset students already disturbed by the mass shooting in the Buffalo supermarket. It was now too late to change the exam questions.
On May 24 Education Department Spokesperson Emily DeSantis said, “In the wake of the heinous shooting, content experts … reviewed all June 2022 regents exams and determined there is content on the… United States History and Government (Framework) [exam] that has potential to compound student trauma.… It is not appropriate to compound the grief and hardship faced by our school communities.”
This ruling does not affect this year’s other exams.
On another topic at the June 7 meeting, Dr. Spindler said that one reason for selecting Mr. Reardon for principal of the High School is that he has been with the district for 23 years. She wanted “continuity,” because the district has undergone so many personnel changes recently.
In the past three years, the HCSD has had two superintendents, three high school principals, three high school associate principals, two business administrators, three heads of maintenance and numerous retirements.
Also at the meeting:
•Student Rep. Hromada said he plans to enter SUNY at Cortland this year and study physical education
•The Board approved new courses in 7th grade Project Lead the Way, 8th grade regents Earth Science, and 9th grade Civics. The Civics, 1/2 year, will be mandatory. Dr. Spindler announced new programs in Farm to Table
•Dr. Spindler said the summer after-school sports camp should include sports not in regular district programs, such as possibly rugby
•The result of a survey of students, parents, staff, and community partners was summarized by the Dr. Spindler
•The board called for the creation of a Health and Safety Committee to “monitor the condition of occupied school buildings,” monitor safety during school construction projects and “participate in the investigation… of health and safety complaints”
•Dr. Spindler announced the appointment of Dr. Trinidad Hernandez as Diversity Equity Inclusivity coordinator. Dr. Hernandez has served the HCSD since September of last year as Associate Principal of the Montgomery C. Smith Elementary School
•Community members Pam Decker and Michele Clarke voiced concern about bullying going on in schools.
The next meeting of the HCSD Board of Education will take place Tuesday, June 21, at 6 p.m. at the Hudson High School library.