Written by Betsy Abraham Friday, 19 April 2013 00:00
Because of a new Teacher Retirement System (TRS) option, the Westbury School district will be able to save over a million dollars and meet its state mandated tax cap requirements.
According to interim superintendent of schools Mary Lagnado, the TRS board recently voted to give the district reprieve of the high tax rating.
“Instead of paying it all at a high rate, we can smooth it over an eight year period and defer part of the payment to the future,” Lagnado said.
This option will save the district $1,080,564 next year, and instead of 16 percent, the district will be paying a 14 percent rate toward the TRS.
This district had entertained the idea of cutting teacher positions, but the new TRS relief option will allow it to avoid that option. Now, their budget includes a 5.17 percent increase and a 1.67 percent tax cap, which is well under the state mandated levy.
The district is additionally looking to save money in several ways. One includes outsourcing the half day pre-kindergarten teaching positions, which according to Lagnado will save the district at least $350,000.
“We will not be running it, St. Joseph’s college or some other source will be giving us teachers,” Lagnado said. “Nobody will lose their job. We’re doing it all by attrition.”
The district is also not replacing four full time retirement positions. They also propose saving money on transportation by changing the bell schedule at Park Avenue elementary school. By starting the day half an hour earlier, it will save the district the cost of three buses, resulting in a savings of over $163,000.
“We’ve looked at every area so that we can save, but also to maximize dollars and maintain the integrity of our academic programs. I think it’s a win win for everyone,” Lagnado says.
The board formally adopts the budget on April 18, and the budget vote will take place on May 21. If the public does not vote to pass the budget, the district will have to cut an additional $1.22 million to achieve a zero percent budget.
Thursday, 06 March 2014 00:00
Westbury High School students are teaching younger children from Park Avenue Elementary School valuable life lessons about money and business skills through the High School Heroes program.
In this program, high school students that are taking Renate Johnson’s Junior Achievement class will go into first grade classrooms to teach 45-minute lessons.
“It is a program that gives high school and younger students confidence and teaches them about business and financial literacy,” said Johnson.
Saturday, 08 March 2014 00:00
The Westbury Historical Society will host Dr. Natalie Naylor, professor emerita at Hofstra University and author of Women in Long Island’s Past: Eminent Ladies and Everyday Lives at their next meeting on March 9.
Naylor’s presentation will focus on the place of women in Long Island’s history, including several prominent women from Westbury’s past.
Thursday, 20 February 2014 00:00
Albertson resident and Kellenberg sophomore Gabby Schreib qualified for the Millrose Games in New York City. Schreib qualified as a member of the Sprint Medley Relay along with Danielle Correia, Bridget McNierney, and Jazmine Fray.
The Kellenberg relay’s close second place finish in January’s Millrose Trials has moved them closer to defending the title they won in the same relay at last year’s Millrose Games. Schreib and her teammates time is currently second in the United States for girls track and field performances.
Thursday, 20 February 2014 00:00
Congratulations to Westbury athletes Michael Esposito, Eileen Harris, Brett Harris, and Michael Going, each of whom won awards in Race # 1 of the Jonas Chiropractic Run Nassau Series co-hosted by Nassau County and the Greater Long Island Running Club.
Michael Esposito, age 15, took home the second place award in the 15-19 age group with a time of 23 minutes, 6 seconds. Eileen Harris, age 42, earned the first place award in the women’s 40-44 age group. She completed the race with her 45 year old husband, Brett Harris, who was the third place award winner in the men’s 45-49 age group. Michael Going, age 41, scored third place honors in the 40-44 age group with a time of 20 minutes, 51 seconds.