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Letter: Board Of Pod People

When we first campaigned for two of the trustees who still sit prominently on the Island Trees Board of Education, we had such hope and faith in them. Together, we were going to win the Memorial School’s name back and replace the old boys’ club with honest, caring people. There was talk of a new superintendent, solar energy and running a clean administration with all-American values. When the votes were counted and we won two seats, we were so excited. We were in good hands. 

 

And at first we were. The Island Trees Memorial Middle School was rededicated. Our two trustees put in thousands of hours—attending dozens of meetings, studying stacks of material and scrutinizing the budget. It was tedious work, often boring, and it took them away from their families and leisure time. They were hard workers. 

 

Then, fairly rapidly, a horrible thing  happened—our board members, the people we campaigned for—morphed into their own old boys’ club. It was like “The Invasion of the Body Snatchers.” It was like pods had taken over the people we had voted for. 

 

Fast forward to 2014. Now we’re not only fighting to preserve our beloved hero Lt. Stephen E. Karopczyc’s name on his building, we’re fighting for the actual building, and Mrs. Gallow’s school, and our public library, and the land on Farmedge Road. 

 

Plus, we’re also battling to keep our Levittown way of life—sing-family homes and wide green fields for the children. Not a massive project with a big black-top parking lot, and hundreds of vehicles choking our streets. 

 

How did this happen? How did people we believed in, people we trusted—how could they even consider selling Stephen’s school to a ruthless developer who doesn’t care one iota that the school is dedicated to a U.S. Congressional Medal of Honor recipient? 

 

What happened to the board’s sense of honor and pride? They should be setting the standard and setting it high. They should be moving heaven and hell to keep that building in A-1 shipshape condition. But what are they doing? They’re plotting to take a sledgehammer to our hearts and bring eternal shame on Island Trees. 

 

And all this baloney about renaming something for these “historic figures” shows how a school board and a staff of highly educated people just don’t get it. They consistently value a college degree over a private first class. 

 

We should not have to tell the board members what’s right and what’s wrong. They should know. How could good people go so terribly wrong? 

 

Blame it on human nature. Call it elitism. In the end, it’s just plain sad that a campaign which started out with so many exciting ideas and positive plans, and a grand sweeping spirit of America came full circle—back to an old boys’ club. 

 

I urge everyone to vote for Brian Fielding, Paul Giambona, and Mike Rich who—in big block letters—clearly pledge to save our memorial, our schools and our library. In doing so, they will be saving the very soul of Island Trees. 

 

Dale Bertan

 

Island Trees Class of ‘68

News

Holidays increase daily congestion 

While parking around LIRR train stations is typically a challenge, even on a regular work day, the holidays create more of a struggle for commuters in search of parking spots. LIRR spokesman Salvatore Arena said that ridership between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day increases by at least 10 percent; last year it was by 12 percent. Though the MTA is adding more trains to the schedule, that doesn’t ease the parking situation, which is operated not by the LIRR, but by individual municipalities in each town. 

 

“Every station is different,” Arena said. “A good part of our parking is in the hands of the locality. They set the rules essentially.”

A little bit of Hollywood has come to Plainview. The Loft Sound Studio, a Plainview-based vocal and performance training facility, is the creation of lifelong music artist Donnie Klang

and Matthew LaPorte. The duo says that they draw upon their personal experience of the ups and downs of the recording industry to give kids today the chance to be superstars.

 

“Essentially, we’re looking for the next Justin Bieber, someone we can train and teach them how to really become an artist, put them on YouTube and hope they really blow up,” said

LaPorte. “If they do, through our connections that we made while we were in the music industry the past 15 years, we would try and get them a record deal.”

 

The Loft Studio, located at 1530 Old Country Road, already has a list of achievements, including protégé Madison Beer, who got attention after Justin Bieber tweeted a link to a video of her singing. She is currently signed to a record deal on Bieber’s label in Los Angles.


Sports

The Island Trees Cross Country teams continue their improvement in 2014. This year the girls’ team has a record of 8-2 and with their victories over Clarke and Wheatley High Schools, they clinched the Division Championship for the first time in Island Trees High School history.

 

The girls are led by senior Captain Angela Brocco who has been rewriting the girl’s record boards. Brocco set the school record for the Warwick Valley 5000 meter course on Sept. 20. 

This season the Girls’ Varsity Soccer Team at Division Avenue has the rare ability to fill every position on the field with a member of the senior class. All 11 seniors have made contributions to the success of this year’s squad.


Calendar

Turkey Cookie - November 21

Lost Nights - November 22

Town of Hempstead Meeting - November 25


Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com