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A Look On The Light Side

Written by Judy Epstein Friday, 05 April 2013 00:00

The Cobbler’s Tale

Once upon a time, there was a cobbler whose child ran around town without any shoes.

“Look at her,” one villager whispered to another. “Barefoot again! Is he such a workaholic he can’t make his own daughter one pair of shoes?” 

“Maybe he’s lazy,” continued a third. “Or greedy, and wants to keep all the merchandise for himself.”


Letter: Joey’s Legacy

Friday, 05 April 2013 00:00

Nice work by John Owens on the “...Buttafuocoed” article (Anton Weekly, March 22). His take on what is needed to revitalize Long Island makes a great deal of sense. The problem, as I see it, is that we lack political leadership that has any sense of vision for this area. The politicians are too vested in partisan politics and patronage. They lack the intelligence, experience and commitment to develop any bold, creative solutions to Long Island’s challenges.


From The Desk Of Superintendent Dr. Elaine Kanas

Friday, 29 March 2013 00:00

Budget Update

At the March 13 budget workshop, the athletics, special education and technology departments presented their budget details for next year.  These presentations can be found on our website at  > click on District tab > Departments > Business & Finance > Budget Info > 13-14 Budget Info. 

This year, the district needed to reduce the budget by $2 million in order to fall within the property tax levy cap. Through the restructuring and reallocation of district resources, as well as leveraging grants and cost-sharing with other districts, program and class sizes are being maintained, with some new class offerings at Wheatley.


APPR: Evaluation Costs Outpace Funding 

Friday, 22 March 2013 00:00

Submitted by NYSSBA Executive Director, Timothy G. Kremer

School districts outside the state’s five largest cities expect to spend an average of $155,355 to implement the state’s new teacher and principal evaluation system this year, based on an analysis of 80 districts that submitted cost data to NYSSBA. Those one-year costs are nearly $55,000 more than the average four-year federal grant awarded to New York school districts to implement the program.


A Look On The Light Side

Written by Judy Epstein Friday, 22 March 2013 00:00

Real Estate Non-Logic

When I first moved to Long Island and started driving the expressways of Queens, I became seriously confused. No matter which one I wanted, be it the Clearview or the Cross Island, I somehow always ended up on the other one. My husband thinks this means something negative about my map-reading skills, but of course he is wrong.


From The Desk Of The Nassau County Executive

Friday, 15 March 2013 00:00

Need A Job? ‘Nassau Works’ Can Help

When I was elected County Executive, in the midst of the worst economic downturn in decades, I knew I would need some creative ideas, call it a new way of thinking, to help people who had lost their jobs get back to work. 

Recognizing that jobs are the key to a growing economy, I instituted job fairs to link the unemployed with businesses and corporations in need of workers. I also invested funds in job training and retraining centers with our local towns. In partnership with the County’s Industrial Development Agency, I offered incentives that helped create and retain more than 3,500 private sector jobs. My administration worked hand-in-hand with businesses and corporations to ensure they–and their employees—stayed in Nassau County. 


Wake Up!

Written by James Bernstein Friday, 15 March 2013 00:00

The announcement last week by Northrop Grumman Corp. (Grumman to those of us who have been on this Island awhile) that it will transfer 850 jobs from its Bethpage facility to Florida and California should come as no shock.

The company, once Long Island’s largest and best-known employer, has been sending jobs South for more than two decades. At one point, the in the 1980s, the company employed 25,000 people on the Island, built the Navy’s premier fighter, the F-14 Tomcat, and, in the 1960s, built the Lunar Lander that took Apollo astronauts to the moon.


Superintendent’s Column

Written by Dr. Elaine Kanas,Superintendent, East Williston School District Friday, 08 March 2013 00:00

Around The District

Strategic Planning – Can You Help?

Thank you to those of you who helped us ‘try out’ the important priority survey we will be distributing to the entire East Williston School District community in March. 

Dr. Feeney On The Radio

On Monday, Feb. 18,  Dr. Sean Feeney, Wheatley Principal, was a special guest on WNYC-FM’s The Brian Lehr Show, which featured a Principals’ Roundtable.  The discussion focused on being a principal in today’s world.   You can hear a recording of the broadcast by going to http://www.  

Leveled Literacy Intervention

Recently, North Side reading and other support teachers participated in a two-day training session in Leveled Literacy Intervention for third grade. (Note: This training is supportive of one of this year’s curriculum goals, implementing our District Response to Intervention Plan.)  The Fountas & Pinnell Leveled Literacy Intervention System (LLI) is a small-group, supplementary intervention program designed to help teachers provide powerful, daily, small-group instruction for children in the early grades.  Next month reading teachers and grade K, 1 and 2 support teachers will participate in the training. 

High School Course Selection

Wheatley is now in the process of scheduling for the 2013-14 school year.  

A Reminder from the Guidance Department:  Have a thoughtful conversation with your child about their course selections.  Students are encouraged to choose courses that challenge their intellect and stimulate their minds. Building a schedule that provides opportunities for research, exploration and critical thinking is important as students look forward to the college years.

New College Seminar Courses Added 

Next year’s juniors and seniors will have the opportunity to take two brand new courses.  One is the Junior Seminar, which will involve preparation for the SAT and ACT exams as well as support students in the college search process.  Seniors have the opportunity to sign up for the Senior Seminar where they will work on essay writing, building a resume and other activities designed to support them in their college application process.

Budget 2013-14

Wednesday, Feb.27 was the first Budget Workshop.   At this meeting the district presented an overview of the budget, as well as the administrative and capital components of the budget. Other parts of the budget will be highlighted at upcoming workshops, the calendar of which is listed on our website. Each Friday, I will highlight the key details from each budget meeting in this newsletter. You will also find the Budget Info page on the website updated after each workshop.  [Start at and click on the District tab > Departments > Business & Finance > Budget Info > 13-14 Budget Info. You may also find the Budget Info page in the news box on the home page of the website.]  

Boys Varsity Basketball – What a Team!

Congratulations to Wheatley’s Boys Varsity Basketball team, the number one seed in the Nassau County Class B Championship Tournament. 


Letter: What Long Island Can Learn From The School Bus Strike

Friday, 22 February 2013 00:00

Just across Nassau’s Western border, a crisis is brewing in New York City over a school bus strike. The city is trying to cut costs by contracting out school busing to private companies.  Bus drivers, members of Local 1181 of the Amalgamated Transit Union, are fighting in this tough economy to keep the job protections they currently have. Even though our busing here in Nassau is far more decentralized, our local school districts are facing the same fiscal pressures, and our bus drivers depend just as much on their jobs as their counterparts in New York City. So how do we make sure we don’t end up in the same situation?


Superintendent's Column

Written by Dr. Elaine Kanas, East Williston School District Friday, 01 March 2013 00:00

The Core Curriculum 

As you know, New York State has signed on, with the majority of other states in the country, to implement the Common Core Curriculum, a comprehensive K-12 curriculum. This year you have received information regarding the Common Core from various sources, including parent workshops sponsored by your PTOs and the District.  For the first time, the state ELA and Math assessments in grades 3-8 will reflect students’ grasp of the new common core material.  


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