NJMAC meeting minutes January 28, 2011

1. Rescheduling and Attendance: The meeting was originally scheduled to be held at Madeline’s on Wednesday, January 26, 2011 but was rescheduled to Friday, January 28, 2011 as a result of predictions of icy weather on Wednesday. Twenty-four administrators and guests were in attendance.

2. Call to Order/Announcements: NJMAC President Jean Hicks called the meeting to order. Kathryn Imbrogno announced that Ridgewood Montessori School had completed work on its new campus and that Ridgewood would begin an elementary program at the site in September 2011. Jean introduced the luncheon speaker, Gwen Shangle of Princeton, who would speak after lunch about Social Media.

3. The Minutes of the prior meeting on October 14, 2010 were read. Ann Wilson corrected her description of the College of New Jersey Masters program to read “Master of Arts in Teaching” rather than “Masters in the Art of Teaching.” Kathryn Imbrogno moved to accept the minutes. Seconded by Cindy Giannahopoulos. Accepted.

4. Shaheen Syed orally gave the Treasurer’s Report, stating that NJMAC had current net income of $9,947.

5. Old Business:
Ann Wilson gave the 2011 NJMAC Conference update. The Conference is scheduled for Friday, March 4 at the Pines Manor in Edison, NJ. Thirty-five vendor tables were sold, with thanks to Karen Westman and Erin Hitchcock for their efforts. Ann expressed a special thanks to ETC Press for their generosity in printing the conference brochure, which is usually the biggest conference expense. Ann also mentioned that the brochure and a conference registration form had been uploaded onto the NJMAC website and showed the electronic brochure. Jean Hicks stated that electronic registration was not yet possible and that she was collected the registration forms as hard copy and was hand collating the registrant information. Jean also reminded everyone that only coffee and tea would be offered in the morning and that the membership should remind attendees from their school to eat before arriving, if necessary.

Jean Hicks mentioned that the Kindergarten Survey that was begun in October 2008 would be revived after the annual conference. Jean said that her hope was to have it ready to distribute to parents of current Kindergarten students by the end of April 2011.

Jean Hicks announced that the Form 990 for the corporation had been filed with the IRS, formally giving NJMAC non-profit status. A heartfelt thank you was offered to Beth Ann Byrne of Princeton Montessori School for spending an entire day getting the report organized and helping with the filing.

6. New Business:
Jean Hicks announced the NJMAC Record Retention Policy and Conflict of Interest Policy needed adoption and called for a vote.

Lisanne Pinciotti moved to adopt the Conflict of Interest Policy distributed at the last NJMAC meeting on October 14, 2010. Karen Westman seconded. Approved.

Comments on the Record Retention Policy were solicited by Jean. Kathryn Imbrogno asked who was responsible for keeping the records. It was stated that the NJMAC Treasurer was responsible for keeping the records and that they would be transferred to each succeeding Treasurer at the time of succession. Mary Anne Keller moved to approve the Policy, seconded by Sandra Murgacz. Approved.

Other Announcements:
The Spring NJMAC meeting will be held at Ridgewood Montessori School on Tuesday, April 5, 2011, beginning at 2:00 p.m. with a tour of Ridgewood’s new campus, followed by the business meeting at 2:30 p.m. Hors d’oeuvres will be served. The speaker will be Phyllis Povell, author of Montessori Comes to America: The Leadership of Maria Montessori and Nancy McCormick Rambusch.

NJMAC meeting minutes October 14, 2010

1. Welcome: Marsha Stencel welcomed the 29 school administrators and their guests in attendance. She gave an overview of the new wing of Princeton Montessori in which the luncheon was hosted and its benefits, which include providing a model of a full school campus to demonstrate that Montessori is not just for 3-year-olds.

2. Call to Order: The meeting was called to order by NJMAC President Jean Hicks, who thanked Marsha Stencel and Ann Wilson for hosting the event and Karen Westman for arranging the speaker, Will Redway of Whipple Hill. Jean welcomed Sharon West, a new NJMAC member who heads a new school in Little Falls, NJ.

3. The Minutes of the prior meeting on April 27, 2010 were read. Karen Westman moved to accept. Seconded by Ann Wilson. Approved.

4. Shaheen Syed gave the Treasurer’s Report. Marsha Stencel moved to accept. Seconded by Leslie Meldrum. Approved.

5. Old Business:
Ann Wilson gave the 2011 NJMAC Conference update. The Conference is scheduled for Friday, March 4 at the Pines Manor in Edison, NJ. Dee Joy Coulter has been engaged to give the keynote address on Special Learning Styles.

6. New Business:
Leslie Meldrum briefly presented a planned NJ Private School Health Consortium being marketed by ISM to help schools control their medical insurance costs. Schools wishing to consider participation were referred to Ron Gates at ISM via email at rgates@isminc.com.

Jean Hicks discussed the proposed amendments to the NJMAC corporate documents outlining the Corporation’s Record Retention Policy and Conflict of Interest Policy. A vote will be scheduled for the next NJMAC meeting.

Jean Hicks asked the members if anyone would volunteer to help the treasurer prepare the 990 report since NJMAC is required to file a full form for the first time this year. Marsha Stencel volunteered her business manager.

Jean Hicks announced that the next NJMAC meeting will be held at Madeline’s in Bound Brook on January 26th, 2011.

Other Announcements:


Jean Hicks proposed a Spring 2011 Kindergarten study exploring whether Montessori encourages creativity.
Ann Wilson announced that PCTE has formed a partnership with the College of New Jersey in which the College will accept from PCTE training 18 hours of credit toward a Masters in the Art of Teaching.

NJMAC meeting minutes April 21, 2010

Welcome/Announcements /Complaints-
The meeting was called to order by Cynthia Gianna. Thanks to the Forsgate Country Club in Monroe for the beautiful setting. Amelia McTamaney announced a series of workshops called Positive Parenting that will be held at her school. Bobbie Cecio announced that this was her last meeting as she is relocating to the West Coast.

Minutes- The minutes of the January 20, 2009 meeting were read and approved.

Treasurer’s Report- The treasurer’s report was read and approved.

Old Business An updated report on the 2010 March Conference was given by Jean Hicks. A deadline of July 31st was announced for presenters. Jean also reported on the Research project being developed to determine the long term effects of Montessori Education. She reported that the questions to present to subjects were being fine tuned.

New Business Tentative dates for the upcoming year were announced. Wednesday, October 21, 2009 Thursday, January 28, 2010 Tuesday, April 27, 2010 Tentatively, the January meeting will be hosted by the Princeton Montessori School and Cherry Blossom Montessori will host the April meeting. An invitation for speakers and topics for the administrator meetings was requested.

Meeting adjourned The presentation was “Nurturing the Nurturer” by Hiena Sue immediately after the business meeting.

NJMAC meeting minutes January 28, 2010

Welcome/Announcements /Complaints- The meeting was called to order by Cynthia Gianna. Thanks to Leslie Meldrum and Donna Fiumara for the arrangements at Madeline’s on Vosseller for our meeting. Over 35 directors and their guests were present. Carol Korngold from Center for Montessori Teacher Education in New York was introduced. She announced that the Christopher Academy and CMTE in New Jersey would be merging as a teacher training program at Christopher Academy starting this year. 2.

Minutes- The minutes of the October 21, 2009 meeting were read and approved.

Treasurer’s Report- The treasurer’s report was read and approved. 4.

Old Business Jean Hicks reported on the March 5th Annual Conference at the Pines Manor in Edison.

New Business Election of officers will be in order for the next meeting on April 27, 2010. We will be electing the offices of President, Vice President and Secretary. 6.

Meeting Adjourned- After the business meeting, the meeting was turned over to Marilyn Larkin of The Village School who spoke on the topic, “Solving Problems, Staying Sane and Growing a School.” This continues our “Directors Address Directors” series.


NJMAC meeting minutes January 20, 2009

Minutes of the January 29th NJMAC meeting The Winter meeting of NJMAC was held on January 29th at Giovanna”s Restaurant and hosted by Amelia McTamaney from the Christopher Academy. Cindy Giannahopoulis called the meeting to order at 11:00 AM. She welcomed the members and thanked the staff of the Christopher Academy for their help in organizing the meeting. Cindy remarked that everyone was so cooperative and generous when she was organizing the meeting. She then asked for announcements from the floor. Chrismont Montessori Academy distributed a flyer inviting members to attend an event on March 3 with speaker, Maren Schmidt on “Building Brains the Montessori Way”. Lesley Meldrum recommended Steve Meed, a person she had design a website for her school. The company name was The Visual Studio. Kathryn Imbrogno from Ridgewood announced that she would be mailing out “Save the date” postcards for the March, 2010 Seminar.

The minutes of the meeting on October 22, 2008 were reviewed and approved. The Treasurers report was review and it was noted that the balance was low. The report from the Conference from last year was also reviewed. Both were approved. We used a different format for the 2008 conference which proved to be more costly. Tax filing was successfully completed in December. The organization is on probation during the first three years of existence as a non profit. Since the application shows a date of 2006 we have one more filing while on probation.

Plans for the Spring Meeting on April 21, 2009 were announced. It will be held at the Forsgate Country Club in Monroe. The Forsgate is located minutes away from the turnpike at exit 8. The speaker will be Hiena Sue, “Nurturing the Nurturer” More information will be mailed.

Plans for Conference 2010 are being finalized. It will be held at the Pines Manor in Edison. The keynote will be Chick Moorman. Suggestions for afternoon workshops and vendors will be considered. Ginny Cusak has offered to speak to the administrators for a workshop.

The meeting was adjourned for lunch and Karen Spring from Princeton Montessori gave an informative presentation on “Maintaining Enrollment” directly following.

Professional development certificates were available for all who attended.

Respectfully submitted, Mary Ann Keller


NJMAC meeting minutes October 22, 2008


The fall 2008 NJMAC meeting was held at the Princeton Montessori School. The meeting was called to order by President Cindy Gianni at 11:30 AM. Cindy welcomed thirty new and returning members. She thanked the staff of the Princeton site especially Ann Wilson coordinator of the event. Ann Wilson distributed a parent education survey to all who were present. She is hoping to compile all the data for a presentation to the fall Seminar.

The minutes of the spring, 2008 meeting were reviewed and approved. Minutes are now posted on the NJMAC website at NJMAC.org. At that meeting the new Board member were voted into office. The Treasures’ report including figures from last years’ March Conference will be posted on the website. The balance of the Treasury is positive.

Cindy Gianni announced that the filling for non-profit status of NJMAC has now been completed. The ST-5 certificate has been received. The next filing date is in December, 2008. Please note the name of the organization is officially the New Jersey Montessori Association Corporation, a.k.a. NJMAC, An Association of Montessori Directors.

Planning for the 2010 NJMAC conference will start in November. We are hoping to find a central location and include venders. The morning will feature a speaker and afternoon break out sessions. Please submit suggestions to Jean Hicks of the Albrook School who is chairman of the event.

The meeting was called to a close at 11:50. Attendees broke into networking sessions. Topics were based on a telephone poll conducted by members of the Board. They included:
  • Parent education
  • Staff development
  • Research on Montessori
After a lovely lunch Susan Young from Get In Front Communications presented a talk titled “Communicating with Confidence: How to Read Body Language”

Respectfully Submitted,
Mary Ann Keller

NJMAC meeting minutes April 29, 2008

Bobbi Cecio welcomed everyone to the Acorn Montessori School

Acknowledgements: Sandy Murguez thanked Bobbi for hosting today's meeting. The minutes ftom the January 30th meeting were reviewed. Amelia McTammaney motioned to accept the minutes and Marsha Stencel seconded the motion. The treasurer's report was read and reviewed.

Old Business:
We had a conversation about the conference this year. 98% of the reviews were favorable. The teachers loved going to the various schools for the workshop and seeing the schools, this is something they don't usually have the opportunity to do. Hats off to Cindy Gianna for a fabulous job in all her hard work with this conference and the huge success it was. Cindy presented the host schools a plaque thanking them for hosting this year's conference.

We had a conversation about what we want for next year. After a lengthy conversation we decided we would focus on the administrators next year and provide something for the administrators. We will revisit the possibility of some kind of conference the following year.

We had a conversation about revitalizing the NJMAC organization. We talked about the Executive committee holding the business meeting before the actual NJMAC meeting allowing us to have more time in the actual meeting. We talked about: a more central location, bring in quarterly speakers, spend next year revitalizing the organization, have the three meeting dates set by May 30, 2008, build a mentoring program, the possibility of paid help, offsite meetings (because some of the smaller schools don't have a place to host a meeting,) and changing the days of the week, a Tuesday, a Wednesday and a Thursday, thinking this may work for those administrators that say they can't make a Wednesday meeting.

We created a membership committee: Marilyn Scagnelli, Marcia Hayes, Mary Ann Keller, Sandy Murguez and Elsie Powell. We created a speaker committee: Evie Holmes, Bobbi Cedo, Marsha Stencel and Amelia McTammeney.

We scheduled the meetings dates for 20008/2009:
October 22, 2008 at the Princeton Montessori School
January 29, 2009 Amelia McTammaney is looking into hosting this meeting
April 21, 2009 Evie Holmes is looking at hosting this meeting.

New Business: Bobbi Cecio nominated Cindy Gianna to be the next NJMAC President and we voted and Cindy is the new president. Cindy Gianna nominated Jean Hicks as the vice-president and we voted and
Jean Hicks is the new vice-president. Cindy Gianna nominated Mary Ann Keller to be the new secretary and we voted and Mary Ann is the new secretary. Cindy Gianna presented Bobbi Cecio a gift and thanked her for her years of service and dedication to the NJMAC organization.

The meeting was adjourned.

Respectfully submitted,
Marcia Hayes
NJMAC Secretary


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