Facing an enrollment bulge that is moving up from the elementary schools to the middle and high schools, the Levittown School District administration has asked the board of education to consider two possible options in order to handle the large jump in the number of students that will be attending those schools which is projected. The two options that Superintendent of Schools Dr. Herman Sirois offered to the board to consider are a sixth grade center or additional classrooms added to the buildings in need of space.
When the enrollment bulge first appeared in the elementary schools the district considered several options including re-opening the Seaman Neck School, but by building additions onto the elementary schools as needed the district was able to deal with the enrollment growth and maintain the rent money currently being received from BOCES for use of that building. Now the enrollment increases are approaching the secondary schools and the district is once again looking at Seaman's Neck as a possible solution.
District administration have made several trips to Seaman's Neck over the last several months and have determined that as it currently exists, the school would not be large enough for a sixth grade center. If they were to decide to use that building as such it would need four classrooms added to it. They have also considered having a sixth grade center at Memorial but the fact that the administration offices and vocational center are housed there currently presents a problem. Sirois noted that they considered Memorial as an option in the past but found that moving the entire vocational program would be too much of a problem. He said that moving most of the programs and the administration offices to Seaman's Neck would be a possibility if they left vocational programs which had specific needs, such as the Auto Repair Program, at Memorial. According to Sirois this would save the district a considerable amount of money.
The problem with a sixth grade center, noted Sirois, is that it does not solve any problems at MacArthur unless they have Salk and MacArthur share space.
The second option that Sirois asked the board to consider, which he termed "The path of least resistance," was the possibility of adding classrooms to the Salk/MacArthur complex. He noted that the public is very used to this option and in the past the district has found that this option is what is most agreeable to the public.
The second option would involve adding at least eight classrooms onto MacArthur. There are three major problems with this option, according to Sirois. The first problem mentioned was the fact that if the sixth grade is not moved out of the Salk/MacArthur area then there is still a problem with parking and traffic on that property. The second problem is that this option would have to be funded by the budget so the budget must pass. The third problem, which is tied into the second problem, is that if the budget did not pass there will still be the influx of students and the district must have a fallback plan.
Sirois noted that the administration had considered several other options in looking at the enrollment projections but found that these two are the only viable options at this time. He did not ask for a decision from the board but asked them to consider both these options and try to decide which one they would like the administration to proceed with in regard to planning.