(This letter is in response to the article “Grand Jury Indicts Former Nassau Corrections Officer on 80 Counts” that appeared in the Friday, Sept. 10 edition of the Levittown Tribune.)
Commenting on the indictment of a former Nassau County corrections officer from Levittown, Nassau District Attorney Kathleen Rice said, “This man was supposed to help women with their problems, but instead he preyed on their vulnerabilities for his own sick needs...he terrorized these women by abusing his limited jailhouse power.” [“Grand Jury Indicts Former Nassau Corrections Officer on 80 Counts” Levittown Tribune, Sept. 10, 2010]. The article notes that “the charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.”
In what sense is the defendant “presumed innocent” given the definitive nature of Rice’s statements and the fact that his name and photograph have appeared in his hometown newspaper? I mean, she didn’t simply say that there were accusations against the defendant serious enough to warrant a grand jury indictment. She said “preyed on,” “terrorized,” and “abused.” How’s that a presumption of anything else other than guilt?
The SATs are a standardized test to help colleges gauge the scholastic intelligence and academic caliber of students who seek admittance into their schools. The SATs place all students - whether they are from Long Island, New York State or other states across the country - on a level playing field since they are all asked to answer the same questions. Recently, the College Board released national, state and district SAT Reasoning Test data to the public. In fact, Newsday published this information in a September 13th article titled “Dip in Statewide SAT Scores...”
Overall, national SAT scores continue to decline for college bound students. Many researchers believe this is occurring as the result of far more students taking the exam compared to years ago, while others hypothesize that schools are not preparing students with the critical reading, math and writing skills necessary for success. Below is a chart that shows how Island Trees children have fared over the last six years, including this year. In short, our critical reading score has inched up from last year, but math, which has varied greatly over the past six years, fell considerably from our last year’s high of 523. Similar to the state’s writing results, our scores in this area have remained flat from the prior year.
Almost a year and a half ago, Levittown’s Yours Ours Mine Community Center closed. Seniors who relied on the YOM for social interaction and meals were devastated (not to mention the families who relied on the daycare and adult programs). My mother and her friends were encouraged to participate in other nearby clubs. While they missed the familiarity of the YOM, they started to settle into their new centers, grateful that they still had somewhere to go.
Flash forward to a few weeks ago when several county-provided bus drivers were ‘encouraged’ to retire, rather than be given the raises they asked for. Now senior centers like Jewel Quinn in North Merrick are facing the challenge of getting the folks to the club with fewer buses and drivers. In some cases, the seniors are even being told they can only come in on certain days, forcing them to stay home on others.
Dear Island Trees School Community,
The Island Trees community in Levittown has a long, proud and storied tradition of military service. Traveling through the neighborhoods, our country’s red, white and blue colors are proudly displayed. Our parks, streets and schools have many monuments and memorials to our servicemen who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country. In 1972, 20-year-old Island Trees graduate, William “Billy” Henaghan, died in a helicopter crash in Vietnam. Billy who played football and wrestled for Island Trees High School is remembered by Island Trees teacher Bob Amato for his leadership qualities, athletic ability and devotion to his family, friends and country. Bob recalls, “Billy had the opportunity to be an outstanding collegiate wrestler, but instead devotedly chose to serve his country.” A year later, the Island Trees School District honored his sacrifice by dedicating the high school athletic field in his honor. The inscription on the plaque reads, “This field named in memory of William Henaghan who through desire, devotion and self discipline dedicated his mind, body and soul to touch the highest goals in athletics and as a human being.”
(This letter is in response to the “Hannon Opposes Mosques Near Ground Zero” letter from Senator Kemp Hannon that appeared in the Friday, Aug. 27 edition of the Levittown Tribune.)
Once again the platform of the right wing has infiltrated the platform of the National Republican Party. Senator Kemp Hannon’s recent letter opposing the building of a mosque in downtown Manhattan is an example of the Republican Party to run on emotional issues to garnish votes rather than developing party policies to improve our country during these difficult economic times.
It was bound to happen. The county marina in Wantagh Park lost its power three days ago. Park administration was notified but boat owners, who reside throughout the county, were not. To effect a repair the entire park electrical system was shut down leaving the boats literally in the dark each night. Two hundred boats valued at well over a million dollars were left unprotected by the police department and Department of Public Security, apparently because they weren’t notified about the problem by the parks department.
(This letter is in response to a letter to the editor, “Hannon Opposes Mosque Near Ground Zero” from Senator Kemp Hannon that was printed in the Friday, Aug. 27 edition of the Levittown Tribune.)
I am responding to the letter from Sen. Kemp Hannon in the August 27, 2010 edition in which he opposes the building of the mosque near Ground Zero. He states that the land surrounding Ground Zero should “remain sacred” to honor those who lost loved ones on Sept. 11. However, it is well known that this area already contains many businesses that might be described as less than sacred.
Welcome Back Parents! The Island Trees School District is not only delighted to have the children back to school starting Tuesday, September 7th, but wishes to welcome all of our parents to our annual “Meet the Teacher” nights. The schedules are as follows:
Tuesday, Sept. 14, 7 p.m. at Stokes Elementary School
Wednesday, Sept.15, 7 p.m. at Sparke Elementary School
Tuesday, Sept. 21, 7 p.m. at Island Trees Memorial Middle School
Thursday, Sept. 23, 7 p.m. at Island Trees High School
I would like to inform your readers of some information passed along to me from Lawrence W. Mulvey, commissioner of the Nassau County Police Department.
The police department has noticed a correlation between large house parties and the likelihood of violence occurring at such gatherings. The level of violence in the incidents has varied from moderate to severe. However in most cases, the police were not informed of the gathering until it was too late.
(Editor’s note: Our Election Times Policies state that although generally we do not publish letters from candidates, there may be instances when we would. Because of the uniqueness of the subject, we will accept one letter from candidates on the subject of the proposed mosque near Ground Zero. The letter should only address the candidate’s view and not that of the opposing candidate.)
As the controversy of building a mosque near Ground Zero continues to fill national headlines, I would like to express my opposition regarding the placement of a mosque in such close proximity to this sacred ground of New York City.
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