For the first time in years, Roselle Park will not be having a Project Graduation in 2015. Originally started throughout the country and in the borough as a way to offer high school graduates safe, alcohol-free, supervised activities as a post-graduation party. The Roselle Park PTSA (Parent-Teacher-Student Association) has, for years, raised money and gathered volunteers to offer this free program to Roselle Park High School (RPHS) Seniors on the same night as graduation.
“This decision was not made lightly and was driven by several factors, including but not limited to our inability to raise the funds needed to organize the event,” said Tracey Siravo Scott, PTSA President. The cost of the event, which includes transportation, rental of a facility, and security, has been more than $10,000 in the past.
The PTSA President went on to explain that once it was realized that they would not be able to raise the necessary funds needed this year, all effort was made to still host the event asking parents of interested Seniors to pay a fee to offset the cost. Unfortunately, a minimum number of students was needed to commit and organizers could not meet that minimum in time.
“Despite this, I am happy to report we will still be able to continue our tradition of funding scholarship money for the graduating Seniors!”, stated Mrs. Scott, “We believe in the wonderful parents of Roselle Park, understand there are many ways to support this town, know some are already stretched thin between various organizations, appreciate the support we did get this year to at least fund scholarships, and hope more parents and high school students will join us in future years to keep the PTSA relevant.”
RPHS principal Sarah Costa echoed the efforts, saying, “The PTSA worked very hard to try to hold Project Graduation, but the student and parent interest just was not there. To their credit, however, these parents successfully hosted a wonderful Mr. Roselle Park competition last Friday that will greatly help the PTSA fund their scholarships.”
PTSA member Sue McGovern, expressing her disappointment, remarked, “It breaks my heart that this class will not have one last party together the night of graduation. Going forward we will learn from our mistakes and start fundraising sooner.”
The RPHS PTSA meet monthly during the school year. Anyone interested in joining can visit their web page for more information (link)