Written by Rick Karas, email@example.com Friday, 25 January 2013 00:00
Farmingdale Schools Superintendent John Lorentz told a larger-than-usual crowd at a board meeting earlier this month that security has become his top priority since the tragic shootings in Newtown, CT.
“We are reconsidering all of our security procedures with a very different mind then we’ve had in the past,” Lorentz said.
For starters, the district will be accepting bids from independent security specialist firms to advise the district and set forth a comprehensive security plan.
Other measures taken include the proposed hiring of six new security aides to be dispersed throughout the district. All those hired would be retired police or corrections officers.
The district has already revised policies in terms of building access. Visitors must now be buzzed into a school building by school personnel.
The school will use its construction consultants to figure out ways to make buildings more secure with locks and communication devices. Also, school staff continue to be trained in terms of response and action in case of an emergency.
A variety of opinions were expressed by residents regarding the idea of hiring armed guards at schools.
“By arming a security officer, you’re saying that you’re not going to stand for anything and it’s going to be known to the public and it’s going be known to many of these criminals,” said Anthony DiPaolo.
“To take it to an extreme level of ridiculousness with having armed personnel in schools I grew up in... absolutely not,” said one parent.
Some residents suggested that aides should be trained in self-defense, rather then armed with a weapon. Alexander Melton, a senior at the high school, said armed guards should be posted outside of the school, but not inside.
In other district business, Assistant Superintendent Paul Defendini explained to residents the difference between the school district tax levy and the actual tax bill. While this year’s tax levy remains capped at 2 percent, there are other factors outside the district’s control that affect actual taxes paid.
This mainly includes the differences in the property assessment system for those living in Nassau and those residing in the Town of Babylon.
The facility advisory committee continues its meetings with architects to implement energy conservation measures in the district. The committee hopes that actual work will begin next fall.
The board is optimistic that state aid should be on track for next year, although the hit that state revenues have taken due to Hurricane Sandy could impact funds.
Later this month, the legislative action committee will be traveling to Albany to meet with assemblymen and state senators.
- Even as they try to make cuts, there doesn’t seem to be any relief in sight in the BOCES budget, where the district is facing increases of around 5 percent in administrative costs, as well as increases in the actual charges for usage of classes.
The next public meeting of the Board of Education is Wednesday, Feb. 6, at 8 p.m. at Howitt Middle School.
Wednesday, 11 December 2013 00:00
This past Fall, Farmingdale village officials approved plans to construct the proposed Staller Project—located at 285 Eastern Parkway in Farmingdale—which will usher in 27 residential housing units. Now, after further discussion with village officials, developers with Staller Associates, Inc. have modified their original renderings to change the once olive-colored facade with steel panels to red brick, to better match the motif of downtown Farmingdale.
After discussing the initial proposal with several residents, some of whom did not feel the cold steel panels were a good fit with some of the surrounding buildings, Farmingdale Mayor Ralph Ekstrand said he contacted the Hauppague-based developers to find a way to better compliment the community.
Friday, 06 December 2013 00:00
Bethpage Water District officials recently filed a federal lawsuit against Northrop Grumman Corp., claiming the company’s facilities caused “irreparable harm” by creating a toxic plume that has contaminated the groundwater, costing the district millions of dollars and threatening more than 33,000 customers in Bethpage, Old Bethpage, Farmingdale, Levittown and Plainview.
According to the lawsuit, the district is demanding a jury trial to determine whether Grumman owes compensation for the costs of monitoring contaminants, operations, maintenance, treatment upgrades, and equipment required to comply with state and federal safe drinking water law; or whether Grumman would bear the expense of securing an alternative source of clean drinking water.
Thursday, 12 December 2013 00:00
Thirteen male and female student-athletes at Farmingdale High School have signed scholarship letters of intent to continue their academic and athletic careers at prestigious schools around the county. During the “College signing day” ceremony, on Dec. 5, friends, families, faculty, academic advisors, coaches, and parents joined student athletes in support of their collegiate careers.
The following students have signed letters of intent:
Thursday, 12 December 2013 00:00
Franklin Diaz of Farmingdale scored as the third overall finisher in the 21st annual Rob’s Run—a 5-kilometer cross-country style race through Stillwell Woods in Woodbury, hosted by New York Blood Services,
Diaz finished with a total time of 16 minutes and 43 seconds.
After finishing the race, on Dec. 1, Franklin went back out onto the course to run with his nephew Anthony Diaz, who was celebrating his 10th birthday. Anthony finished the run with a total time of 29 minutes and 37 seconds.
534 competitors finished this year’s run which was put together by the Greater Long Island Running Club, in memorium of Rob Lauterborn.