It seems part of the human condition to become so focused on that which needs correction that we often fail to appreciate our progress. It’s true in our personal lives, our work lives, and certainly when it comes to how we view government. In 11 years of public service I have yet to meet anyone whose first observation about government is how great it works.
To the bee that stung me
while I labored in the garden,
my fears, my penitence, my doubts—
these are my flaws,
a thing of flesh and blood.
As we approach the upcoming school year, we will be celebrating the 85th year of instruction in the Sewanhaka Central High School District. Before our students arrive in September, our professional staff will return on Sept. 3 and Sept. 4 for our Opening Day Program during which we will welcome new and returning faculty and staff. We also will honor our Teachers of the Year and employees who have been with the district for 25 years or more. Our goal continues to be to ensure that each child is provided with an education designed to meet his or her needs. We believe that our professional staff is instrumental in providing for this success. The district will introduce and welcome Mr. Kevin O’Brien, assistant superintendent for finance and Operations. In addition, Ms. Regina Agrusa has been promoted to the position of assistant to the superintendent for pupil personnel services; and Ms. Arlene Mishanie has been promoted to the position of supervisor of special education services.
Championing the road with remarkable alacrity
We run, run, run. And we run.
Severe concrete smacks every sure step,
By step by step; hot enough to melt the soles.
The gritty sweat of it—the grueling salty
Thirst of it—the awful sun performs
Its duty, photon by photon—
painful inch by inch,
With sheer force and determination.
On behalf of the Board of Education for the New Hyde Park-Garden City Park School District, I would like to welcome back our entire community to another school year. Despite the fact that the New York State test scores resulted in the predicted 30 percent decrease, our professional staff and students are ready for the challenge and will once again work together as a team to meet the re-calculated benchmarks. We are fully aware of the need to be college and career ready and have demonstrated excellence and mastery in the past, and we will do so in the future.
In celebration of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King—
50th Anniversary, Aug. 28, 1963
An elderly woman nodded off to sleep
resting her head on my shoulder.
We were two strangers
seated next to each other on the subway.
She was black and I white.
Not that that makes a difference.
I was recently speaking with one of my staff via cell phone as he walked his dog late in the evening. Unfortunately, we had to stop our conversation about a half dozen times as he waited for the noise from overhead aircraft to pass. So to those who ask me about airplane noise, yes, I do understand how aggravating it is. To be sure, I live with it every day, like most of you.
When my mail failed to materialize on Saturday, July 27, I thought August 10, the day Saturday delivery was supposed to stop, had arrived two weeks early. I still have not received it and my neighbors never received theirs either. I thought of the almost scriptural sentiment engraved on the magnificent James Farley post office building on 8th Avenue in New York City:
Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these carriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.
Recently, Congressman Peter King fired a warning shot across the bow of Republican politics stating that isolationists like Rand Paul won’t defeat Hillary Clinton, the prospective Democratic presidential nominee in 2016. It’s a warning Republicans would be wise to heed.
Yet, in the second decade of the 21st century, Republicans are not merely divided over the budget but also America’s role in the world. Last week I lunched with an elderly gentleman whose views about economic and social policy are in harmony with my own. I mentioned my concern about the Republican Party embracing isolationism and becoming timorous about exerting any muscular influence in world affairs and how vexing it is that so many young Republicans support non-interventionists like Ron and Rand
Paul. My lunch companion, however, was unmoved by my animus and to my astonishment expressed support for the non-intervention wing of the Republican Party, stating that America no longer has the resources to police the world.
The selfishness we’re witnessing in Albany right now has to stop.
You know I’ve written in this column many times that New York State has made real progress these last three years. Things are far better than they used to be simply because Republicans and Democrats alike are finally working together. Despite the accompanying noise, there’s really no magic formula. Legislators with common sense have finally realized that you can’t always get everything you want and that most times, the reasonable middle ground also happens to advance the people’s agenda very nicely.
But I’m not “feeling the love” lately.
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