This week we are before State Supreme Court in Mineola proving the validity of citizens petitions to hold a referendum on the sale of public land to Oyster Bay Realty LLC, a group headed by the Simon Property Group, owners of the Roosevelt Field Mall. We expect the court to allow the referendum to proceed on August 20, 2013.
Dr. Hankin served Syosset well for many years. While leading a school district with excellence for many years there also comes a resistance to chance. With the new financial challenges facing all school districts in New York, perhaps this is an opportune time for change and a fresh perspective on all issues facing the Syosset School District.
To some of you, Syosset is still home, a vibrant, ever-changing community. To others, Syosset exists only in your memories. For me, Syosset embodies a sense of warmth and comfort that I felt from the school district beginning on my first day of kindergarten in 1993.
In my eyes, Syosset School District has helped to prepare me for life in more ways than one can imagine. In a sense, this can be attributed to the wonderful work of Superintendent Dr. Carole Hankin. This is why the recent news about her abrupt retirement has been such a shock to the community.
As is now common knowledge, the Trustees of the School Board of the Syosset Central School District were informed by Dr. Carole Hankin of her intent to resign for the purpose of retirement. Her retirement will be effective as of October 31, 2013.
This year a member of the Robbins Lane Student Council suggested that we create a P.R.I.D.E garden in front of the school. As a group, we decided that in order to make our dream into a reality we would invite members of the Robbins Lane PTA to join in our venture. The officers of the Student Council attended a PTA meeting one evening, explained their goal and asked for volunteers to help them create a garden and assist in maintaining it throughout the summer months.
This time of year is a time to wrap things up at school whether in the classroom, cleaning out lockers and desks and or taking final exams. But just as we wrap things up, we simultaneously unwrap a new fiscal school year.
The Syosset Council of PTAs never sleeps. As with most organizations, the council works year round and especially during the hot summer months as we gear up for the following school year. Programs need to be in place, reservations need to be made and fundraisers need to be researched. All this and more is done under the leadership of the executive board. We welcome our new council with our end of year culmination dinner and installation.
I’m proud to represent an area of Long Island that has been the location for many famous movies and TV shows, including Citizen Kane, Annie Hall, and the hit television series Boardwalk Empire. It’s even the setting for The Great Gatsby. Shamefully, it’s also now the location for a show whose characters are disgraceful, misleading, and fuel anti-Semitic stereotypes: Princesses: Long Island.
Full disclosure: I kind of enjoy reality TV. Storage Wars and Pawn Stars are among my guilty pleasures. So the idea of watching a reality show taking place in my own backyard wasn’t so far-fetched. I knew little about the show before sitting down to watch the season premiere.
First, as an aside, you all know I have been studying for my Masters in Health Care Ethics. I am two classes away from the 30 credits to get my Masters. I found out today that North Shore University Hospital/Long Island Jewish Medical Center invited me to join their Medical Ethics Committee. It was one of my goals after getting my Masters.
In these past 21 years that I have been involved in public education, everything I did has been first and foremost for the children. As I have said many times, my litmus test has always been, is it good for the children. It has been an interesting, challenging and rewarding job. I will continue to be available to the district and the children and of course to our Board members to give suggestions and help in whatever way I can. As the New York Islanders Team dentist, you will always be able to find me at Islander home games. My experiences with professionals on all levels of the District have added to my admiration of the quality of education being produced here in Syosset. Every member of the faculty and staff care about the children and have each made their mark in preparing our students for the future.
I first saw James Gandolfini playing a mafia enforcer many years before watching him play Tony Soprano on Sunday nights. He was so believable in his roles that he eased into his Soprano acting role as mob-boss flawlessly. The show won 21 Emmy awards.
Gandolfini had a little crooked smile that endeared him to the viewer. He made you realize there was a bit of humanity and emotional frailty in the crime figure. He portrayed a caring father to Meadow his daughter (Jamie-Lynn Sigler) and his wayward son A.J. Soprano (Robert Iler). Tony also had mother problems with his overbearing and pushy parent. On the show, to deal with his childhood problems, he saw a professional Psychiatrist, Dr. Jennifer Melfi (Lorraine Bracco). Incidentally, Lorraine Bracco was a Hicksville High School graduate. The good doctor would not relate to Tony on a romantic level. She also turned down the role of Carmella because she felt it was too similar to her character in “Goodfellows”.
It’s a windless, humid June morning at the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge. As my wife and I walk the trail around the West Pond, insects incessantly bother us. A chipmunk crosses the path. There are a few ever-present robins, some gray catbirds with black caps and a female red-winged blackbird in a tree. What appear to be a few scruffy looking grackles fly in.
The trail approximately 1 and ½ miles has a breach from Hurricane Sandy. If we walk most of the way around, where it’s located, we’ll have a very long walk back that will tire my wife. There’ll also be little reward as there’s not much here. We walk a little further anyway. A mass of gulls and terns with silvery wings flashing are flying around a small island in the bay. There are two or three possible oystercatchers, with colorful red bills and flashing black and white wing patterns that land on shore. We’ll never get close to them. A few of the terns fly overhead holding small fish in their pointed bills as we turn around.
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