Thursday, 13 June 2013 00:00
I have heard from people who believe that extracurricular activities and elective courses such as athletics, drama, science research, computer graphics, music, and the like can be cut from the school budget, because parents can simply pay to send their kids to commercial programs in the area. So I did a little investigating and came up with some interesting facts and figures.
• Music lessons at a local establishment run approximately $60/45 minute lesson for 40 weeks. Which is, more or less, what are kids are getting in school. That totals $2,400.
• Travel soccer and travel lacrosse clubs at two Nassau County based programs run $1,000+ and $1,200+ respectively for the year.
• Art classes at a local facility are $1,100 for 32 weeks.
• A five day computer programming class at Adelphi University for high school age students runs $1,000. I reiterate: five day.
• Acting/repertory classes are $900 for 8 weeks. Our kids are getting these opportunities for closer to 40 weeks so if you run the numbers that totals approximately $4,500 for the school year.
Remember, the increase in taxes for the proposed budget that was defeated on May 21 on a home assessed at $1,500,000 was $1,000. And that covers everything: Academics and instruction, busing, operation of plant, facility maintenance, supervision, curriculum development, special-education programs and services, technology, and so much more, including co-curricular activities.
So why would you vote down the budget and then turn around and pay the same amount—or possibly double or even triple what your increased tax bill would have been if we approved the school budget on May 21—for just one activity? That is not common sense.
I think we all need to think long and hard about what our out-of-pocket cost may actually be if we vote the budget down and lose the programs that have been outlined in the worst case scenario. Replacing them with outside options may be significantly more costly.
If these extracurricular activities that complement the academic foundation go, so go many of the amazing connections between classmates and their link to the schools.
We can’t turn back time, but we can support the budget on June 18. Take the common sense path. Vote “yes,” so we are not forced to dig deeper into our pockets to give our kids these critically important extracurriculars.
Friday, 17 January 2014 00:00
Negotiations are currently underway between the Village of Farmingdale and members of the local CSEA labor union. After a closed door executive session meeting, on Jan. 6, village trustees met with members of the labor counsel to iron out terms of a new contract proposal, which they said will hopefully meet the fancy of union leaders.
“We have sent our proposals out there,” said Farmingdale Mayor Ralph Ekstrand, “we are just waiting for the CSEA membership to approve it.”
Thursday, 12 December 2013 00:00
A new Child Care Centerfor children ages eight weeks through Pre-K—opened at Farmingdale State College this week, which will be open to the community and the college campus.
“The College owes a great deal of thanks to everyone involved in this project,” said Farmingdale State College President Hubert Keen. “This center provides a safe and nurturing environment for the children of our students, faculty and staff.
Especially for our students, the availability of quality child care can determine whether or not they are able to complete their education.”
Thursday, 28 November 2013 00:00
On Saturday, November 9, the MHS Girls Swim Team competed in the Nassau County Team Championships. After a strong preliminary performance on Friday, the girls had their sights set on swimming even faster on Saturday at the finals. On Friday, Manhasset qualified 14 individual swims in the top 10 and all three relays. The team also had an additional 7 swims in the consolation finals (places 11-20). On Saturday, the top 20 individuals and relays compete in each event, all finishers scoring points towards their team total.
In the championship’s opening event, the 200 yd. medley relay team from Manhasset set the tone for what turned out to be a historic day in Manhasset Girls Swimming. The relay team of Grace Kenlon, Allegra Sodi, Megan Smith and Meredith Johnson finished third and set a new school record time of 1:51.96, also qualifying for the New York State Championships.
Thursday, 28 November 2013 00:00
The Indians' regular season came to a close recently, but not before the boys locked up several more post-season honors to complete a highly successful campaign that brought an undefeated season as well as Division and Conference Championships. Manhasset headed into the post-season with high aspirations and battled it out with rival Wantagh High School for two weekends in a row—at both the Class Country Championships and the State Qualification race—coming up just short on both occasions, but achieving many milestones along the way.