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Surprise! NYS Comes Through For Herricks

At the April 3 meeting of the Herricks Board of Education, it was revealed that New York State’s recently passed budget has allotted a larger-than-anticipated amount of aid for schools; this has resulted in an additional $360,000 for the district to use for its 2014-2015 budget.

 

According to Board of Education President James Gounaris, the 2014-2015 Herricks budget was already adopted, on March 20; after the surprise boost in state aid, the budget was adjusted and re-adopted at the April 3 meeting, with the additional funds allocated toward restoring some budgetary cuts made to the district in recent years.

 

“We’re going to use the additional money that we have to hire more staff,” he said. “The biggest concern to those of us on the school board has been trying to find a way to reduce our class sizes. We’re down over 100 positions in the past three years.” 

 

The Herricks 2014-2015 budget, adjusted for the additional $360,000 in funding from New York State, now comes in at $107,594,911; the Board of Trustees unanimously voted at the meeting to re-adopt the budget to reflect this new amount. However, these new numbers will not affect taxes in the Herricks district, according to Assistant Superintendent for Business Helen Costigan.

 

“We’re putting the additional funds into our revenue file, so this will not affect the tax levy at all,” she said. “This extra money will bring our budget up to a 2.84 percent increase, but out levy remains at 1.84 percent. That doesn’t change.”

 

Trustee Brian Hassan gave a final update on the infamous InBloom, which had drawn the intense ire of parents and schools across the state when it emerged that the company would be sharing sensitive data about New York students with various third-party companies. After vigorous lobbying from educators and parents, the state put an end to the unpopular practice. 

 

Superintendent of Schools Dr. John Bierwirth describing the program as “so poorly handled,” noted it was initially slated to be nationwide.

 

“New York was the only one left in InBloom, which was originally supposed to go across all 50 states,” he said. “However, you can’t have a national database with no states being a part of it, so it appears to be really dead, which is great.” The plan is effectively dead in the water after New York’s withdrawal, he said. 

 

“InBloom is no longer an issue for us as far as data-sharing with third-party vendors,” Hassan said. “This was the result of a lot of hard work by people, not just in Herricks, but across the state, and it’s nice to see that our voices have finally been heard.”

News

James Sokol and Jake Leeds from Boy Scout Troop 298 recently completed their service projects.

 

Sokol and fellow Scouts replaced the backboards, rims and nets in the basketball court in Nuzzi Park. They also trimmed trees and repainted the court lines. 

The debate over New York State Common Core standards continues, with students from local school districts showing a mild resistance to the exams.

 

According to the New York State Allies for Public Education, 39 students in the Herricks School District opted out of the English exam, while 74 did not take the math test. For the New Hyde Park-Garden City Park School District, 17 students did not take the English test while 18 refused to take the math test.


Sports

The Sewanhaka Indians varsity football team hosted Elmont Spartans on Saturday, Oct. 18 in its final home game of the regular season. 

 

It certainly did not go as the Indians had hoped, falling 18-8, in a mistake filled game. Head coach George Kasimatis said the Indians had their chances, but kept digging themselves into a hole with mental mistakes on both sides of the ball. 

 

Playing from behind, senior running back Brenton Mighty was able to break free for a long touchdown run, to put the Indians on the board. 

Sewanhaka Indians Head football coach George Kasimatis told his team to expect a dogfight in this weeks game against the New Hyde Park Gladiators, and he was right after its 35-21 victory last week. 

 

“All the kids know each other really well, it’s always competitive when we play each other,” he said. 


Calendar

PTA Meeting - October 22

International Night - October 23

Halloween Dance - October 24


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