Thursday, 26 September 2013 00:00
Just this past summer, school districts, including Great Neck, were turned upside down when state test scores were released. For Great Neck, at first glance, the preliminary report indicated that our students were not doing well at all, that their scores had fallen and that many were in need of special help. Well, those results were wrong!
Superintendent of Schools Tom Dolan presented some results, the skewed results, in statements released in the local press and again at a special meeting last Monday evening. Dr. Dolan made it very clear that well in advance, the State
Department of Education “predicted” that scores would go down 30 percent. And the SED was correct. Last April’s test scores did indeed drop 30 percent.
With new tests, and very different scoring, the results were upsetting, even frightening. But are they true indicators of how are children faring in school? The answer is a resounding “no.”
Dr. Dolan explained some of the very different, very skewed manner in which tests are now scored. And he also noted that the full student test results are not in yet. However the teacher and building results are in and Great Neck teachers performed at the very top levels. From this we can surely deduce that the most outstanding teachers will surely produce most outstanding and well-educated students.
In addition, although the state indicated some areas in some schools throughout the state where help is needed, they have yet to offer reports that explain what is actually needed.
The Great Neck School District looked carefully at all results and did determine, that although scores are lower than the norm, if you really look at the scoring, Great Neck students did very well indeed, keeping the district high on the list of well performing schools. And if the district suspected any special needs, they quickly jumped to provide assistance, well before the state could make any suggestions.
Our children are safe and well educated here in Great Neck. Our confidence in our schools remains unshaken, while our resolve that the state has really got it all wrong remains firm!
Wendy Karpel Kreitzman
Saturday, 30 November 2013 00:00
The recent adoption the Common Core Learning Standards, a rigorous series of teacher and student assessment testing, and the potential sharing of confidential student information with third parties have resulted in a radical change in the educational landscape in New York State—one that many parents have been concerned about.
To address these growing concerns, the Great Neck School District’s United Parent Teacher Council recently hosted a question and answer session at South High School with New York State Regent Roger Tilles, a Great Neck resident who has been outspoken with both his support of content the Common Core and his disapproval in how the new set of learning standards have been implemented.
Friday, 29 November 2013 00:00
At a meeting last week, after almost four hours of back and forth between Clover Drive residents, the attorney representing builder Frank Lalazarian’s controversial Old Mill II project and members of the Village of Great Neck’s Planning Board, there was very little progress, no vote taken and far more questions than answers.
The subdivision plan, a project under discussion for the last five years and recently approved by the village’s Zoning Board of Appeals, calls for 11 houses to be built in the area behind the Old Mill Apartments, with sole access from Clover Drive. Complicating the builder’s efforts to gain approval to start building is the fact that one of the lots is within the boundaries of Great Neck Estates and will require that village’s approval also. Additionally, Lalazarian’s project must gain the approval of several Nassau County agencies, including its department of public works, department of health and planning commission.
Wednesday, 27 November 2013 15:23
The Bears team before a recent game at the Andrew Stergiopoulos Ice Rink with Coach Dan Marsella.
Thursday, 28 November 2013 00:00
Great Neck’s Ayal Hod is the proud coach of Great Neck’s winning Top Gun sixth grade team in the Island Garden Fall League. Hod puts together the team every season, mixing local youngsters from Great Neck and children son Dillon’s AAU Jamaica Queens team. The league is very competitive and challenging and it teaches the children many valuable lessons: “how to be great teammates by sharing the ball, how to compete hard on every possession and what you put in is what you get out.”
Hod says that the main challenge is for every child to bring their individual talent to the team and collectively they have something special. an ex-player, he says that “basketball was very good to me, it helped pay my college education and it paid my-bills for many years to come via several basketball commercials ... basketball also opened many doors for me and it helped me tremendously in my business career.”
Hod enjoys sharing his basketball journey background with his son and his friends and having them learn lessons too.
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