Today, March 23, 2022, Michelle Obama Elementary School hosted their first-ever “Powerful Women in Politics” Breakfast in honor of Women’s History Month. The morning featured visits from First Lady of New Jersey, Tammy Murphy, the youngest Commissioner of Somerset County, Sara Sooy, and Dr. Crystal Davis, the Founding Member of Morris County’s National Black Caucus. The guests of honor paid a visit to their designated classroom, where they held Q&A’s with the students and engaged with some of the teachers. Joined by Superintendent Roger León and Board Members; President, Dawn Haynes and Vice-President Flohisha Johnson, the guests of honor were then treated to breakfast and sweets following their time with the students.
Superintendent León commemorated the event stating, “To say that we’re grateful that you’re here would be an understatement - First Lady, your leadership is very powerful. You embody the concept of Women in Politics.” He then followed up by adding “Dr. Davis, congratulations to you and the great work that you have done and we thank you for your time.” And lastly, “Commissioner Sooy, thank you so much. As a Latina, you have assumed such an impactful leadership role, it just embodies and is indicative of the greatness you have within you.”
Students were presented with the opportunity to ask questions of each guest and learn a little about the women they had been studying over the last month. Tammy Murphy, the First Lady of New Jersey has done a great deal of work as a champion for education. With initiatives such as the “K-12 Climate Change Education” and her infamous tradition of “Tammy’s Tremendous Tuesday Tales” on social media, her work in uplifting education is one to admire. “We love our teachers, you spend more time with our children than we do and we deeply appreciate everything you do.” She shared. “We know the last two years have been challenging and we thank you.”
The concept of the event was thought of and planned by Principal of Michelle Obama Elementary School, LaShanda Gilliam in relation to one of the school’s core values, Leadership along with recognition of Women’s History Month. “We believe recognizing our female political leaders is important and necessary.” She shared. “With that in mind, classrooms in K-2 have adopted a Woman in Politics to study the entire month of March. Our students have learned a great deal about the backgrounds of these amazing women.”
Before the morning’s end, guests were treated to a presentation of all that the students and staff have achieved in the short amount of time since the school officially opened its doors in September. This included a timeline of each event and activity that students, staff and parents have participated in - building a community within the school and its surrounding areas. “Michelle Obama Elementary School is only in their first year of operations and the school’s administration, led by Principal Gilliam has done a phenomenal job of upholding their core values in everything they do with these children.” shared Board President, Dawn Haynes. “Events such as this one and all that they’ve done thus far are a true testament to the ways in which our schools are really leveraging their communities, providing resources and experiences for our students. It’s great to see.”
Michelle Obama Elementary School has also celebrated: Healthy Heart Week, Black Lives Matter Week, National Day of Giving, Read Across America Week, and more.