201 Family - - EDITOR’S NOTE -

Things are go­ing to be very dif­fer­ent around the Dug­gan house when Septem­ber rolls around. My daugh­ters, Katie, Ha­ley and Molly, will be­gin their col­lege ex­pe­ri­ences. I’m an in­stant empty nester who now needs to re­dis­cover some of my pas­sions that I set aside while I was rais­ing my chil­dren. It’s ex­cit­ing for me, but sad too!

In this is­sue, we’re start­ing a con­ver­sa­tion about PARCC test­ing and where it might be headed. Many New Jersey fam­i­lies opted not to par­tic­i­pate when the tests were con­ducted in the spring. It re­mains to be seen if par­tic­i­pa­tion will be man­dated or whether chil­dren will still have the op­por­tu­nity to sit it out. We asked lo­cal su­per­in­ten­dents to weigh in on the is­sues sur­round­ing the test and where stan­dard­ized pro­fi­ciency test­ing is headed.

In our Spe­cial Par­ent col­umn, Les­lie Perl­mut­ter pro­vides in­for­ma­tion about what par­ents with chil­dren with spe­cial needs must do in or­der to qual­ify for ac­com­mo­da­tions on stan­dard­ized tests like the SAT and ACT.

One of the things I al­ways re­mem­ber about the be­gin­ning of the school year is all the forms that have to be filled out – in­clud­ing med­i­cal his­to­ries. This month, we dis­cuss the im­por­tance of cre­at­ing a com­pre­hen­sive and cur­rent med­i­cal history for each mem­ber of the fam­ily so that all in­for­ma­tion pro­vided to the schools is as ac­cu­rate as pos­si­ble. Even the health­i­est of chil­dren need to record in­juries, ill­nesses, med­i­ca­tions, etc. that will help the school pro­vide care if nec­es­sary.

It isn’t only par­ents and kids who need to pre­pare for a new school year. The fam­ily pet of­ten needs to do so as well. Vera Lawlor presents strate­gies for help­ing pets cope with the anx­i­ety and even lone­li­ness they feel when the chil­dren re­turn to the class­room.

Our Do-Good­ers this month are Closter’s Hip­pocrates Polemis and Kevin Pereira. A pair of 11-year-olds at Te­nakill Mid­dle School in Closter, the boys ap­peared in a doc­u­men­tary on HBO this year called Sav­ing My

To­mor­row. The six-part se­ries fea­ture in­ter­views with chil­dren talk­ing about how the en­vi­ron­ment is in dan­ger and how peo­ple can make changes to help the fu­ture. They were in­ter­viewed for the doc­u­men­tary a few years ago while at­tend­ing Hill­side Ele­men­tary School. The se­ries, which fea­tures ap­pear­ances by a num­ber of celebri­ties, started air­ing ear­lier this year. And the boys have found them­selves busy talk­ing with a va­ri­ety of media out­lets as they con­tinue to get the mes­sage out there.

En­joy the last, lazy days of sum­mer be­fore all of the ex­cite­ment be­gins!


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