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Superintendent's Corner Column 

Welcome Ms. Marla Burns

New Supervisor of Special Education

July 26, 2022

I am pleased to announce the appointment of Ms. Marla Burns as the new Supervisor of Special Education for the Ramapo Indian Hills Regional High School District. Ms. Burns distinguished herself among a talented pool of applicants through multiple rounds of a competitive and comprehensive interview process that included committee members from the administration, supervisors, and teachers.  


Ms. Burns is excited to begin working with such a talented group of educators, students, and parents. Ms. Burns' new role will require her to take a student-centered approach when assisting instructors with differentiating techniques in the classroom to meet the needs of our students. She encourages open communication and the development of strong relationships with colleagues, students, and parents in order to achieve our District goals.


Ms. Burns previously served as a teacher and in an administrative capacity as Coordinator of Special Education for eleven years. As Coordinator of Special Education, she collaborated with other directors to ensure that children's needs were met. Her professional background includes experience with the I&RS process, supervision and coaching of teachers and related service providers, development and coordination of the IEP process, recruitment and hiring personnel, collaboration with sending districts, and planning a curriculum to meet the needs of all children. Ms. Burns has worked as a Learning Disability Teacher Consultant (LDTC) for the Verona Public Schools for the past 9 years, prioritizing children's needs in all decisions. Ms. Burns is focused on collaborating with the special education staff at Indian Hills High School and Ramapo High School to develop, practice, and refine instructional techniques in the classroom.

Ms. Burns worked as a LDTC specializing in high school case management. She worked directly with high school students in close collaboration with their families and district personnel. During this time, she engaged as an active listener to prioritize students' academic, social, and emotional needs. She worked with the administration to increase course offerings, develop new programs, coordinate district-wide professional development to improve IEP writing, and constructed Extended School Year (ESY) curricula. She delivered successful and differentiated educational strategies to students in the classroom by creating supportive and trustworthy relationships with special education teachers. She simultaneously developed meaningful IEP’s to enable children to reach their full potential in the school setting. Ms. Burns has worked in special education for 20 years, creating an environment where students and educators feel safe and respected at all times, and where the community recognizes that we are all working together for the benefit of their children.


Ms. Burns holds a Masters of Arts in Teaching from Montclair State University, B.A. in Early Childhood Education and Counseling from the University of Connecticut, Learning Disability Teacher Consultant certification from Montclair State University, Supervisor certification from New Jersey City University, and a Teacher of the Handicapped certification. Ms. Burns is excited to join the Ramapo Indian Hills Regional High School District and is eager to support the school community. Ms. Burns will be joining our learning community in late September. Please join us in welcoming Ms. Burns as our new District Supervisor of Special Education.


All my best,

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Dr. Rui Dionisio

Superintendent of Schools



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