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Editorial: Tough Choices

Mention the term Common Core and not surprisingly, you’ll generally wind up with a visceral reaction. On Tuesday, Feb. 4, the Garden City Board of Education opened a work session up to the public with Common Core being the topic discussed. Dr. Teresa Prendergast, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, wound up moderating and delivering a thoroughly comprehensive Common Core presentation with handouts and slide, during which time she dispelled myths and rumors about this highly controversial state-mandated program. One of the primary points she made was the fact that much of what Common Core is teaching has been getting covered by the district’s current curriculum. By all accounts, administrators and teachers are doing a yeoman’s job in trying to work with state mandates and making sure that Garden City’s students are comprehending the material and putting their best foot forward.

During the public comments section of the meeting, many alarmed parents voiced their concerns about the emotional effects these tests are having on their children. A few even wanted to know why the board of education didn’t merely opt out of Common Core. The unfortunate reality of the situation is that state aid is tied into the program and if districts choose to pull out, they risk losing this monetary infusion. Given that between 3 to 5 percent of the school budget comes from New York State, already high taxes would become obscenely onerous should this money disappear. By all means, residents should continue to write letters to the State Board of Education and local representatives voicing their objections to how Common Core is being implemented, but in the meantime, understand that this program is not going anywhere. And should the Garden City Public School District choose to opt out, the anxiety and stress resulting from the resulting tax hike will far outweigh any student anxiety.­

 — Dave Gil de Rubio

News

Residents needed to run

The Garden City East Nominating Committee is seeking residents of the East who are interested in being interviewed for the positions of village mayor, village trustee and school board trustee. These positions are subject to election by all village residents. The village mayoral and trustee terms are for two years beginning on April 6, 2015 and the school board trustee term is for three years beginning on July 1, 2015.

Any resident of the East who is interested in being considered for one of these positions must submit a letter of intent and a resume. This submission should note the position being sought; include their name, contact information, a statement explaining their reason for interest in the position, a summary of their professional background and other qualifications, including, although not required, current or prior involvement in village or school board positions or initiatives.

Donald Barrick, Life’s WORC Board Chairman announced that Janet Koch has been hired as the new Executive Director of Life’s WORC, a Garden City-based 501(c) (3) not-for-profit corporation. Koch assumes this leadership responsibility as Peter Smergut retires after 20 years in this position. After a thorough and extensive executive search process, the Life’s WORC Board is confident Koch has the vision and skills consistent with the needs of the organization. She will assume her position as executive director on Monday, Nov. 3.


Sports

High School Jazz Class Added To Dance Conservatory

Dance Conservatory Director Felicia Lovaglio has decided to add a jazz class for students in 9th through 12th grades who are residents of the Incorporated Village of Garden City. This 55-minute class will be held on Saturdays at 4 p.m. beginning on Saturday, Nov. 8. The cost of this 20-week class will be $200. Preregistration is necessary by visiting the recreation and parks office at 108 Rockaway Ave.

Adult Dance Performance Group Now Registering

The recreation and parks department offers an adult dance group that works on jazz and contemporary moves and leads up to a performance in a Dance Company Showcase. Whether you are a beginner dance student or someone who danced as a child and would like to try again, this program will help you achieve your goals. Classes will be held on Saturday mornings beginning Saturday, Nov. 8. Each class is 55 minutes long and the session will run through May. The cost of this program will be $220.  

Reminder

With the fall sports season upon us, the department of recreation and parks would like to remind all residents that pets are not allowed in any neighborhood parks, Community Park, or St. Paul’s fields. Non compliance with this rule will result in the issuance of appearance tickets.

Register For The Online Registration Option

Garden City’s Department of Recreation and Parks will offer the option of online registration with credit card payment beginning with its winter programs in early December.

In order for a family to use the online registration option, the family will first need to visit the recreation and parks office at 108 Rockaway Ave. to verify residency and their family information and receive their password.  A list of instructions as to how to use the website will be included.


Calendar

 Murder, Madness & Poe

Thursday, October 30

Marvelous Movie Matinée

Monday, November 3

Manhasset Comes To Garden City

Through November 25



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com