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Community Reacts To Sandy Hook Shooting

Nation mourns for Newtown following

deaths of 20 children, six adults

In the aftermath of the unthinkable, local students, teachers and administrators returned to school on Monday, Dec. 17 following the Connecticut school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School that took the lives of 20 children and six adults the previous Friday.  

The Hicksville Public School District Superintendent Maureen Bright, along with the board of education, said that in the face of danger, teachers and administrators at Sandy Hook displayed an altruistic side that many educators are known for throughout the country.

“The courage, love and selflessness demonstrated by the teachers, administrators and school staff serves as a shining example of the commitment that school professionals make caring for the children in our care,” Bright said in a statement.

The superintendent said that the district takes safety “very seriously” and maintains an ongoing relationship with the Nassau County Police Department.

Bright said that the district’s doors at its schools are locked and the district screens any visitors. Buzzers and security staff are utilized and cameras in place districtwide. A building emergency response plan is in place and staff are trained in lockdown, lockout and active threat protocols that are practiced with students and staff members.

School safety teams also participate in reviews for evaluating plans and administrators take part in workshops that the Nassau County Police Department sponsors.

“This tragedy highlights the importance of working together to be diligent in following security procedures in our schools and reporting unusual or concerning individuals or behavior to school personnel,” Bright said.

The incident has raised many questions, including how lawmakers will respond to not only gun control issues but also the nation’s stance on mental illnesses.

“We cannot begin to assign a psychiatrist to every American, but we can take meaningful steps to lessen the effect of what has become an American culture of violence and obsession with guns,” said Assemblyman Charles Lavine. “I have long fought for rational measures of gun control and to keep high-capacity magazines and weapons out of the hands of those who should never be allowed to use them. I will continue to do so.”

County Legislator Rose Marie Walker, a former teacher whose children attended Hicksville schools, empathized with those who lost their lives in such a tragic way.

“As a parent, grandparent, and a former teacher, I can speak from my heart and say that this was truly an unspeakable tragedy. Words seem so inadequate at a time like this. May God bless all the beautiful little angels and the adults who died trying to protect them, and give all their loved ones the strength to continue on,” Walker said.

Tips on speaking with young students about the tragedy are available on www.hicksville publicschools.org.

News

A group of like-minded local residents banded together and saved more than 200 area trees from the chopping block — for now.

A state judge ordered Nassau County and the Department of Public Works to stop cutting down trees along South Oyster Bay Road, granting a temporary restraining order to a group of residents spearheading an effort to save the trees.

State Supreme Court Judge Antonio Brandveen scheduled a hearing on Thursday, Oct. 16 for the county to address complaints from residents, in particular a group called Operation STOMP (Save Trees Over More Pavement) founded by Hicksville native Tanya Lukasik.The Public Works department had planned to removed more than 200 30-foot trees in communities ranging from Plainview, Bethpage, Hicksville and Syosset.

For the past 16 years, Lucia Simon has walked from her home in Hicksville to her job at the Hicksville Public Library. She enjoys her job as a librarian and says that the staff has become like family to her. But for the past three years, Simon and 56 fellow co-workers have been frustrated at what she says is the library’s board refusal to negotiate a fair contract.  

“We have had no contract in three years. They refuse to bargain with us. Every time they come back to us it’s not fair,” says Simon.

However, the board of trustees disagree, saying that it has made a “fair offer.”


Sports

The Girls Varsity soccer team, in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, wore pink uniforms and pink socks in their game on Oct. 8 against MacArthur whom they defeated 1-0. The girls and boys soccer programs at Hicksville High School are selling pink ribbon car magnets with a soccer ball and HHS on it with the words “Kick Cancer” on the ribbon. All the money raised will go to the Sarah Grace Foundation, which is a local foundation trying to beat pediatric cancer. The players plan to raise $1,000 for this organization

— From Hicksville High School

Hicksville native progressing through Mets system

The Mets minor league system is enjoying a rare period of prosperity. For years, it was barren due to trading off high-ceiling players for major leaguers, or neglecting the draft in favor of the free agent market. Since General Manager Sandy Alderson took over, the organization has reversed course and put a much greater emphasis on player development. During his second-to-last season, however, former GM Omar Minaya took a chance and drafted a local catcher, Cam Maron, out of Hicksville High School in the 34th round.


Calendar

Spooktacular Halloween

October 17

Fall Festival

October 18

Veterans Casework Seminar

October 21



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