Friday, 03 May 2013 00:00
Like many Plainview Old Bethpage residents, I have questions and concerns about how the proposed Beechwood Development’s 890 homes will affect our school district, of which 264 homes are available to families.
Are we, the POB school district, prepared for an influx of students, of any amount?
Is there a strategy and a specific plan as to precisely how this will be executed, for Day 1?
Has there been a detailed plan of how to execute this influx of students, not in theory, in reality? A plan should be comprehensive and address several scenarios, such as for 50 additional students, for 100, for 150 etc. Many scenarios should be considered with varying amounts of children of various ages. A complete study and execution plan should be initiated, and consequently be shared with the community, so all tax payers can understand the impact. If a meticulous plan has not been thought out, then there is no knowledge of the real cost for our school district. If a comprehensive study has not been done, how will anyone know long-term financial effects to our district? Residents are deciding whether to oppose or support this development and this information would be extremely helpful to know.
With the possibility of between 35 and 200 children entering the district, and continuing to be in the district in the future, how will they be logistically accommodated? Where exactly will they be educated, at which schools? What is the specific plan for classrooms, at each of the nearest schools: Old Bethpage Elem. and Mattlin MS? Eventually these students will attend the HS…how many more students can the HS hold? Will redistricting be necessary? How many additional teachers, buses, aides etc. will be needed in each scenario? Are there available classrooms now at any of the schools? Will specialty rooms such as Art and Music be eliminated to make more classroom spaces? Will class sizes increase?
Answering these questions and examining the real actions required for this potential student influx should be treated like homework. It is an essential task that must be done to be fully prepared…a lesson we impress upon our students and children every day.
In 2000, the land was sold and lawmakers worked on the zoning with great care and thought, based on keeping it consistent with the surrounding areas, and specifically to what would be accommodated in the schools, and not a logistical problem. They came up with a reasonable number, 45 homes, not a number that was selected from thin air. The enormous quantity of 890 homes proposed, is completely irresponsible. It is 18 times more homes that were listed on the paper signed by the purchaser of this property.
A Concerned Resident from Plainview
Saturday, 08 March 2014 00:00
Famous American painter Georgia O’Keeffe was the topic of discussion at the Plainview Old-Bethpage Public Library on Feb. 20.
Members of the audience were given an in-depth look into the life and artwork of O’Keeffe through a self-made and researched lecture and slideshow by art appraiser Louise Cella Caruso.
O’Keeffe lived for 98 years. Within her lifetime, she was granted the Medal of Arts by Ronald Regan, and in 1938, she was selected as one of the 12 most outstanding women of the previous 50 years. When she passed away she was accorded the honor of a first page obituary in the New York Times.
Friday, 07 March 2014 00:00
In celebration of its tenth anniversary, the Kids of Distinction program is offering more scholarships and planning a festive gala that will look back on a decade of supporting our most civic-minded children. The Town of Oyster Bay and the Old Bethpage-based Kids Helping Kids by Kids Way, Inc., the sponsoring entities, are seeking nominations of local youngsters who are standouts in public service for the 2014 awards.
Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto, together with Kids Helping Kids co-founders Robert A.J. Eslick and Philip M. Eslick, kicked off the search for a new batch of “kids of distinction” at the end of February. Nominations are due by May 16. Winners will be recognized at a special ceremony held by the board of trustees on Tuesday, June 17 at 7 p.m. with a citation from the Town and a $2,000 scholarship from Kids Helping Kids.