The school board is currently focusing on the space requirements for the district. Some members have termed this the "bricks and mortar" needs of the Port Washington schools.
There is another need that must be addressed in any discussion of the capital needs of our schools, the Green need. Port Washington has some of the worst sports field facilities within Nassau County. Our fields are limited, and year after year they show the signs of over use. We have no ability to put fields "in fallow" for a season to recover.
In these times of growing drug abuse, of teen emotional disorders, of random acts of violence, there is one constant, organized sports help our youth keep their balance. As parents, we owe them more than car rides across Long Island to one sport event or another. We owe them safe and plentiful fields as well as health and fitness facilities here in Port Washington. We owe them an expansion of the sports program at the high school level. While the current no cut policy has its problems at Weber, the heart of the policy is on target: inclusion. We need to support more students involved at varying levels of sport with all having equal access to training facilities.
As a community, we need to accept that our Green needs are as relevant as our building needs. We have available land within the district that could be used to expand our sports capabilities, while maintaining the town's environmental sensitivity. The Guggenheim land is lying fallow, waiting to be harvested in all our interests. The Salem play field, while small, could be upgraded to a practice facility. This is not an issue of one sports club over another, one sport over another, one child over another. It is an issue that benefits all of our children. It is an issue that we must demand that the school board address within the context of the facilities issue, and which we must support.