New Projects in Global Education
Action-Research Project on Human Rights Education with the Rutgers Graduate School of Education, funded by the Longview Foundation 
During the 2012-13 school year, three faculty members participated in an action research project to learn more about teaching about human rights with students are various grade levels.  Tracy Schottanes worked with her 3rd grade students at Coles, Sacha Batra worked with her 6th grade World Geography students at Park Middle School, and Daniel Valentine worked with his 11th grade Global Perspectives students at SPFHS.  Dr. William Fernekes, a lecturer at the Rutgers GSE, and Noel Baxter, Supervisor of Social Studies, worked with the teachers to develop a pre- and post-asssessment tool, and guided the teachers through the process of developing and implementing lesson plans or units of study on the topic of Children's Rights.  The results of the study were presented at the Rutgers GSE "Teaching the World Forum" in April of 2013 and at the NJ Council For the Social Studies Conference in October, 2013.  Click on the links below to see some of our work:
The Scotch Plains Public Library, in partnership with the SPF Public Schools and other community organizations, is the recipient of a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for its Big Read initiative.  We have chosen to focus our Big Read on the novel, In the Time of the Butterflies by Julia Alvarez as a way to promote a global perspective throughout our community.
 The Big Read  
Students in grades K-12 are participating in lessons for the community Big Read.  Click the links below to see more about the themes and texts they are exploring.


Our students will attain a global perspective

Strategic Planning Goal
Check out our Big Read Video!

The Scotch Plains-Fanwood BOE made global education a priority in its long-range planning, 2009-2014, by addressing the needs and interests of a global society. In this five year period, the district will evaluate and revise its curricula, instructional practice, and school environment to reflect a more global orientation. A school-community committee has been assembled to guide the direction and actions taken by the district in this critical area of education.


Global Education Advisory Committee




Noel Baxter
K-12 Social Studies Supervisor

Tim Donahue

Assistant Principal


Jocelyn Dumaresq

K-12 Language Arts/Media Specialists Supervisor


Dr. William Gaudelli

Associate Professor of Social Studies Education

Teachers College, Columbia University

Raffaele Gerace

Assistant Principal

Terrill Middle School

Geraldine MacDonnell

Italian Teacher

Park Middle School

Dr. Joan Mast

Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum, Instruction, and Technology


Jacqueline Mack
Media Specialist
School One

Linda Materna

K-12 World Language Supervisor


Harry Musto

Fourth Grade Teacher

Coles Elementary School

Nandini Raghavan


Coles Elementary School

Tracy Schottanes

Third Grade Teacher

Coles Elementary School

Lorraine Schug


School One Elementary School

Dr. Sasha Slocum


McGinn Elementary School

Robin Stayvas
Media Specialist

Dan Valentine

Social Studies Teacher


Amy Winkler

BOE Member


Dr. Ed Zaborowski


Park Middle School

Alisa Zonis

Language Arts Teacher


Current Initiatives

Global Competency Framework Document: This document describes in more detail the district's definition of a "global perspective" by identifying the specific knowledge, skills and dispositions we hope to foster in our schools.   Click here to see the document: Global Competency Matrix.

Second Grade Global Cultures Unit: During the spring of 2012, several second grade teachers, an elementary media specialist, the elementary instructional coach and the supervisor of social studies collaborated in the development of a pilot unit to introduce second graders to the study of global cultures. The unit was piloted in several classrooms and will be expanded to all second grade classrooms in the coming year. For more information, click here to read the parent letter that was distributed to students who participated in the pilot unit.

The Big Read: A grant has been awarded to the Scotch Plains Public Library from the National Endowment for the Arts for “The Big Read”.The grant provides funding for programming and materials related to a “one book, one community” initiative.The grant requires that the applicants select a book from their list and partner with community organizations to promote and implement the program.Although the grant application was from the Scotch Plains Public Library, the proposals were developed in collaboration with supervisors and teachers from the SPF School District (Noel Baxter, Jocelyn Dumaresq, Linda Materna and Robin Stayvas).


The novel chosen was In the Time of the Butterflies by Julia Alvarez.The novel, which is the fictional retelling of the true story of three sisters who were murdered for their efforts to overthrow the Trujillo dictatorship in the Dominican Republic, highlights many themes related to our global education initiative.Concepts of human rights, freedom and democracy, the universal value of family, and cultural awareness can be explored through this novel and a range of associated events. For more information about the Big Read events, visit the Scotch Plains Public Library website.

Committee Documents/Links

BOE Strategic Plan Goal Report: April, 2010

October 28, 2010 Presentation

Identity Activity Using Children's Literature

The "Collective" Global Experience of Our Committee: At the first advisory committee meeting, the members reflected on the collective global experiences within this small community. Here is what we found:

1. Built a school in Oaxaca, Mexico

2. Played futbol internationally

3. Teach tolerance and global understanding to first and second grade students

4. Grew up and studied in three countries - India, Zambia, & USA

5. Speaks five languages - Italian, French, English, German, & Irish

6. Lived in France and taught in bilingual program; worked with students from many different countries

7. Spent summers in rural farm village

8. Bringing in travel experiences from Europe and India to the classroom

9. Travel and volunteer work in Senegal, Gambia, South Africa, Costa Rica, and Mexico (more to come :)

10. Worked in global village through Habitat for the Humanity

11. Participated in Youth-Can, world youth environmental project

12. Traveled to Uganda and participated in awareness and remediation of genocide in Northern Uganda

13. Board member for the Union Chinese School

14. Teach Global Perspectives course and adviser to Model UN

15. Teach world languages - Spanish - and traveled to Spain, Portugal, Mexico, and China

16. Lead international collaborative projects

17. Took part in foreign exchange program in Japan

18. Lived in Naples, Italy for 2.5 years

19. Lived in Ghana, England, and United States

20. Traveled to Israel

21. Studied in England for 8 months

22. Grew up, studied, and worked in Argentina

23. Skype user with other countries

24. Backpacked throughout Northern and Western Europe

25. Listen to NPR


Global Education Committee Slides - 1.13.11

Global Education Committee Agenda 1.13.11