On any given day, RCDS's Head of School Jayne Geiger can be found reading a book to a circle of eager listeners, venturing on a safari with kindergartners in the school garden, inspiring faculty with an upbeat sing-a-long before a meeting, or shaking the hands of students to kick off each school day. On Sunday, November 17, Ms. Geiger was attending The New Jersey Association of Independent Schools Trustee Enrichment Day where she found herself on stage accepting The 2019 NJAIS Outstanding Service Award.
In accepting the award Ms. Geiger stated, "I am so grateful for the support and professional development NJAIS has provided throughout my years in New Jersey. The many different kinds of programs for teachers, administrators, and trustees are outstanding. It has been personally and professionally so rewarding to be part of the Association."
Established in 2014, the accolade honors outstanding service to the NJAIS, a non-profit membership association whose mission is to foster the excellence of its member schools, while supporting continuous school improvement and providing a broad spectrum of professional development opportunities for teachers, administrators, and trustees. Ms. Geiger was chosen as this year's Outstanding Service Award recipient in recognition of her educational leadership and commitment to the NJAIS Board for several terms.
When presenting the award, Carole J. Everett, NJAIS Executive Director described Ms. Geiger as a "profound thinker and educator, teacher, administrator, mentor, and visionary."
For the past three years, Ms. Geiger has served as RCDS's Head of School. She holds a bachelor's degree from Douglass College, a master's from Rutgers University, and a master's from Bank Street College of Education. She spent a total of 34 years at Far Hills Country Day where she served as Head of School from 1992 to 2014 before joining the board at RCDS. She began her term as Interim Head of School at RCDS in 2017 and has since made significant contributions to the school including ensuring the excellence of academic programming, continuing the school's commitment to tuition assistance and the undertaking of a new strategic plan.
Throughout her term, Ms. Geiger also contributed to a comprehensive eight-month search process that culminated in the announcement of Carson T. Smith as RCDS's ninth Head of School, effective July 1, 2020. Ms. Geiger, who will be heavily involved in Mr. Smith's welcome and transition to RCDS, will be celebrated upon her departure this spring.
"We are extremely grateful to Jayne for all that she has done for RCDS," said RCDS Trustee Kristen Masserio. "She will surely be missed by all of those in the RCDS community that she touched and inspired with her leadership, warm-heartedness and wisdom. But with this bitter-sweet transition comes excitement. We are looking forward to welcoming Carson and his family to the community and embarking on this new chapter for RCDS that Jayne has led us to."
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