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Billy Joel applauded and smiled during at the “The River of Dreams: A Billy Joel Tribute Concert” in Glen Cove. Credit: Glen Cove School District
loving lindy April 11, 2014 at 03:38 pm
I have not been on the Patch in some time and see this nice story about Billy Joel and of courseRead More there is a negative comment by "Get Off My Lawn." Why can't you just say nothing. Why need to comment. This is why no one reads the Patch anymore. Everyone gets so tired of the toxic people. I agree with Carol H. Enough already. Nicely done Billy! Now I am officially done with this on-line news thread. So please Get Off My Lawn, educate us all how "you are entitled to your opinion." No one cares!
teena April 11, 2014 at 07:05 pm
so sick of hearing everyone blaming the parents. the show ended, the parents were all leaving (toRead More get back to work!) and billy joel was sitting right by the exit. all the parents had to pass him. the 'mob' that bothered him for autographs was teachers who brought out their soloist along with their parents. he left because half the auditorium was leaving!
Gabe Gonsalves April 14, 2014 at 10:34 am
Billy Joel is a class act.......I know him from my younger days. The man is true to his roots.
The Innovation & Discovery Center will join the Center of Excellence for Wireless and Information Technology and the Center of Excellence in Advanced Energy Research Technology in the University's Research & Development Park.
anne seader April 8, 2014 at 08:06 am
Another building? More students? More services? What's next?
brookhavenconfucius April 8, 2014 at 08:14 am
anne, ....MORE OF OUR TAXES, INTO THIS BLACK HOLE !
brookhavenconfucius April 8, 2014 at 08:19 am
IF THESE SCHOOLS EXIST, WHY IS THERE A LARGE UNEMPLOYMENT RATE AMONG THESE, SO CALLED, YOUNGRead More MILLENNIALS ?
Photo: @EARizzo57 Twitter
Irish Rover April 9, 2014 at 10:51 pm
Liz, my point is a reality about home values. Not a stretch as you suggest. I know a principal whoRead More invited local realtors in for open houses to demonstrate how well the school was doing to offset the negative publicity portrayed by media. I saw firsthand parents who relocated to another school based on test scores. Parents don't trust realtors, they look on Greatschools.com and see a test score. Newspapers and news outlets report test scores, they don't take the time to break down why they schools score low let alone why they score high. Most parents won't spend the time to interview or do a walkthrough for a public school before attending.
Irish Rover April 9, 2014 at 10:53 pm
Liz, not to beat a dead horse, do your own research about test scores and home values. I think youRead More will be convinced.
Irish Rover April 9, 2014 at 11:18 pm
Disgusted, you are talking about teacher union leadership. IMO Tenure and teacher unions are killingRead More the quality of American education. Be accountable or get out of the profession.
Kwasi Enin has a tough choice to make. (Photo courtesy of the William Floyd School District)
Mrs. Sea April 6, 2014 at 09:12 am
I always have a hard time understanding why contributors to sites like this one cannot read a happy,Read More joyful, success story and not make bitter, negative and political comments. Can't you just be happy for this boy who worked hard all his life to get to this point? His self-motivation, brains, family, family history, school, community and perhaps church all contributed to his success. Be happy for and proud of Kwasi.
Scooter Libby April 6, 2014 at 09:25 am
@sea It is a wonderful story. But a major part of the story is Kwasi's race. As I stated before ifRead More all things were the same except his skin color there would be no story. Kwasii is not even the #1 ranked student at his school-there are ten ranked higher. Maybe they didn't get good SAT scores, didn't apply to these schools or did and we're not accepted. All I'm saying is that his skin color was a factor to his success.
CHRIS April 6, 2014 at 01:25 pm
Mrs Sea that would be boring. It's much more fun to dive into the story and pick it apart. It'sRead More about asking questions and finding out what your fellow Americans are thinking. Would you rather all of us blindly read a story and accept it as it is written?
Lorraine DeVita April 6, 2014 at 01:40 pm
And it was BECASUE of the warm fuzzy teacher that we spent hundreds of dollars monthly for tutors.Read More I would send her a belated bill if she is still around..
yeahitzme April 6, 2014 at 02:18 pm
We all agree what a vital impact teachers have on their students and all of our children...whoRead More surely are the future of society. We all want what is best for all and there is no one exact road or method to get there...adapting and being flexible depending on any situation is a skill that that garners best results...finding what works and building upon that will most likely have positive results. And yes...mushy is definately not the desired method of instruction and yes...those tutoring bills can add up quite fast with the going rate...Unfortunately...my child had one of those no nonsense teachers and that was the subject I was paying those tutors for...A child that shuts down...can't learn...that approach did not work for them. I am sure there is a comfortable middle ground where both firm and supportive instruction can coexist successfully for both teacher and student. I think it comes down to a respect from and for the teacher! We all know it only takes a short moment to tear something down that may have taken years to build up....Teaching is not easy in any regard...but the rewards are great...as Marion accidentally found out on Facebook when feedback from long past students confirmed...she had gotten things "right" in her instruction along the way... Great effort from all involved is required to achieve success in most cases..albeit that natural prodigy genius that is very rare to come by! May we ALL be successful...and joyful...whichever road we choose!
Lorraine DeVita April 6, 2014 at 05:52 pm
Excellent points! Going too far in either direction has consequences...mostly negative. RespectRead More to me must be earned or at the very least in some cases retained , title or position, alphabet soup before or after a name , does not automatically grant respect. The PERSON earns the respect ...... ie- .the OFFICE of the president deserves respect despite WHO is sitting in the chair, the Person who is IN the job needs to earn the respect OF the title.
New York State Education Commissioner Dr. John King fielded angry questions and comments at a Common Core forum on Long Island in 2013.
NYCLU LHV March 19, 2014 at 03:44 pm
We will be holding a free public forum on our students' right to learn. Among the topics to beRead More discussed will be about the Common Core. Please join us at the Greenburgh Public Library on March 25 at 6:30 PM. Thank you, lowerhudsonvalley@nyclu.org
Commack Resident March 21, 2014 at 11:02 am
My son is a top student in 4th grade. He easily passed the new Common Core State ELA and Math testsRead More last year. This year, he is NOT taking them. I have no doubt he would "pass" again, but, really, is there any real value to passing a meaningless test? He consistently earns top scores on all classroom exams. He reads at an 8th grade level. He has nothing to prove, and I will not allow my 9 year old child to sit through more than 12 hours of tests to prove what we already know...he can read, write and do math at, at least, a 4th grade level. It is not kids like my son that I am concerned about. Other children are the ones hurt most by these tests. Like the little boy we know, who is one of the best math students in his grade, yet gets pulled from the classroom to attend mandatory remedial math instruction because of poor performance on last year's state tests. No one- not his parents, his teacher, or the remedial instructor-thinks this boy needs remedial instruction. Yet, it is mandatory because of a poorly written, ambiguous exam, that failed to test the concepts that the children were taught in the classroom. Many, many students are in similar situations. I am not against standardized tests in general. I allowed my son to take them last year and he performed well. Now that I realize how utterly meaningless the state tests are in their current form, and also just how many hours these poor little children are forced to sit through to take them, I am vehemently opposed to them. We have notified the school, in advance, of our decision to refuse the tests this year. I urge all parents to do the same. We will continue to refuse the tests every year, until the subject matter being tested actually has a real relationship to what the kids are being taught in the classroom, and until the 12 hour-long evaluation is reduced to a more reasonable length, one that 8 and 9 year olds can actually be expected to sit still and concentrate for.
Aidan April 11, 2014 at 10:04 pm
http://www.usnews.com/opinion/articles/2014/03/17/how-common-core-standards-kill-creative-teaching
Protesters stand outside of the News 12 studio in Woodbury on Monday to demand Gov. Andrew Cuomo to fix or scrap the controversial new Common Core curriculum. Credit: Monica Gleberman
Bob Zahm April 11, 2014 at 10:23 pm
@Aidan - you're turning into a spammer! the same url on three different threads. really necessary?
Aidan April 13, 2014 at 05:56 am
Just trying to educate you … over and over again.
David April 13, 2014 at 02:18 pm
@Elsie I'll grant that it's a hard question for second grade. Students can show divisibility byRead More showing 12 being split into 4 equal parts, and again into 6 equal parts, with a diagram, but I think few second graders would get this right. Any second grader who gets this right is showing unusual mathematical talent, or at least unusual advancement in meeting common core standards. Don't we want to allow such unusual talent to be recognized? Especially in elementary grades these days, there seems so little opportunity for it these days.
James Rodgers February 6, 2014 at 04:25 pm
Sally. About these accusations... "We have the lowest level of morale in this district everRead More and it's been low before. " #### How would you know? Do you spend your time doing surveys of KP staff? I can only hope you and your negative attitude are talking to any KP children. "NO contract for the teachers in THREE+ years, while she has given raises to district office employees ( non-contracted), administrators and also added administrators with increased salaries after she stated (it's in the minutes) that these changes would not cost the district any additional funds. " ### It's amazing that as a former board member you don't recall that it is the board of education that approves all employment and salaries for the district. "She also increased her benefits while trying to reduce others." ### Again, the elected School Board increased the Superintendent's compensation. Not the Superintendent. "Great way to LEAD. " ### I doubt you understand real leadership as it does not involve posting notes to the Patch. "She has targeted employees for ridiculous reasons, spent countless hours checking out anonymous tips, moving employees as punishment for not obeying her and even threatened others that they should not attend BOE meeting and if they did...! " ### Where is your proof? These are unsupported and undocumented accusations that are really slanderous. You should put this on paper and mail it in so the district can take you to court. "Great way to lead.....Even was deeply involved in Ms Barrett's on going situation and Mr. Weber not running again for the BOE...." ### You keep bringing up people who USED to be involved in KP Schools; like yourself. Maybe Weber didn't want to run because he didn't want to hear from you again and again and again. Barrret's decision to leave was her own. Maybe Superintendent Agruso is causing the pot holes in front of the post office? Get ANOTHER hobby Sally! All of KP would be better off if you would.
Cathy c.r February 10, 2014 at 09:15 am
The board gave her a raise even with all the cuts and layoffs. The board should retire with her
Charlie Gardner February 23, 2014 at 02:08 pm
Subjective opinions are, of course, just that – subjective - and each one of us determines ourRead More own. Like our current Superintendent or dislike her – the choice is yours. But don’t try to put down her or the school board by substituting subjective opinions as fact. To constantly tie together the Superintendent’s raises with the lack of a new teacher’s contract implies that she has been cavalierly lining her own pockets while the teachers have been working hard without similar compensation. Similar rants have expressed negative views about other staff and employees receiving raises in the past few years. First of all, because the District has not settled a contract with one bargaining unit does not mean that the District can’t settle with other units or employees. That would be irresponsible. And to imply that our Superintendent is somehow being grossly overpaid is to conveniently disregard the facts. I believe that her salary today is about $216,000. Her salary when she started six years ago was $205,000 so that is about a 5.5% cumulative raise for six years, not even one per cent per year. To me, $216,000 is too much to pay ANY Superintendent here on Long Island but, unfortunately, that is not the case given the obscene compensation packages handed out by other school boards with their heads in la-la land – as we know, with the half million dollar packages some have been granting. It’s a shame that $216,000 is “only” in about the middle of the lower half of all Superintendents’ pay. But to somehow demean and castigate our Board while referencing the failure to settle with the teachers and implying that our teachers have been unfairly treated while Dr. Agruso has been raking it in disregards the fact that all of our teachers have received raises during the current negotiation period. And, in fact, almost all of our teachers who have been on the payroll for the past three years have received raises far in excess of our Superintendent – dollars-wise as well as per cent-wise. Don’t believe me? Check it out. I would hope that the District continues to negotiate with the teacher’s union with the well-being of our taxpayers uppermost in their thoughts. The union’s responsibility is to get the best deal possible for its members. The union’s leadership works hard in that regard. The board’s responsibility is to get the best deal for our community, educationally and financially. As to statements representing the “poor morale” among district employees, are we talking about the poor morale among our younger, newer teachers who are upset with the older, established leaders for not working hard enough to save some jobs? I don’t know – it’s easy for someone to throw that canard out there just as it’s easy for some to say that they don’t like the Superintendent because she “doesn’t smile enough.” Meanwhile, the important stuff and this from the KPCTA in case you missed it: 1) Our students outperform many surrounding districts in State assessments, Regents exams, and Advanced Placement exams. 2) Our high school’s 2013 graduation rate was 97% with a 94% college attendance rate. 3) Over 63% of our high school students met the learning standards with distinction. 4) 100% of our teachers are certified and teaching in their areas of expertise. 5) Our high school was rated #562 in Newsweek’s Top 5000 U.S. high schools for 2013. 6) Our district has lost almost $7.5 million in State aid over the past 3 years. Not a bad job by our District leadership and all of our employees considering that last bullet!
Patch file photo.
ChudleyQ January 28, 2014 at 11:27 am
It is on the school district website.
sally pruslow January 29, 2014 at 04:07 pm
I guess traveling is better than staying in a place that has/or will become dicey........ She is notRead More a happy camper if she doesn't get her own way. I am sure with her pension and 90days to pay her health insurance, she will be able to afford some nice trips.......Lucky for this community the winds changed!!!!!!Take off became easier.... Hopefully, her replacement will be better suited to work with the staff, students and members of this community who deserve better.
Stevo February 6, 2014 at 11:22 am
We need someone who actually cares about the students of Kings Park, and not about their ownRead More interests. Glad to see her go!
Patch file photo.
sally pruslow January 20, 2014 at 12:01 pm
Very bold statements from a person who wants to speak out but hides behind a made up name. Why wouldRead More a union want to negotiate with a superintendent who shows no respect for her staff and gives raises and benefit changes to herself and the admin staff? I know you will say that the teachers don't need raises because they get steps anyway that is true(state law not district negotiated), however, just maybe if they (administration) were inclined to take a pay freeze and not negotiate to use their sick days to pay their insurance premiums when they retire things could change. MS. Agrusso has no problem saying NO to her staff, however, the board doesn't say NO to her. To negotiate, the people involved need to trust each other... I was there and it can be done when there is trust and give and take. This is a small district, 6 buildings ( one that is partially rented and houses admin office), a bus garage,a dwindling staff and increasing administrative staff. Running a district is like running a home budget you must live with in your budget, plan for the future and remember you get have everything you want... Do you think 219,00 is a just salary for running this district? Wake up Kings Park please get involved and vote for two board members who will do what needs to be done not rubber stamp the supt. and bring back transparency to this district. Example of this lack of transparency was when at last weeks BOE meeting the BOE only found about the raise to Ms Meehan was when they saw their packet. NICE!!! BY the way the roof at the high school is leaking and there were pails in the halls again. Sounds like the 1990's all over again. Wake up Kings Park and remember this district is in danger of financial distress. Demand change. It is your district.
ChudleyQ January 20, 2014 at 05:42 pm
Why would the teachers want to negotiate a new deal? It certainly wouldn't be on terms as favorableRead More for them as the old deal. It IS a pretty sweet deal to be guaranteed a raise every year, even without a new contract. One of the biggest issues that the Board and the Superintendent have failed to address is the teachers contract. What have they done to get the teachers to come to the table and negotiate? Doesn't appear to be anything. But as Sally correctly points out, Dr. Agruso got her raise a year or two ago and Ms. Meehan just got hers in what appears to be a clandestine manner. It really leaves a bad aftertaste. But they get up at every school board meeting and say they squeeze every dollar till George Washington cries. There is plenty of blame to go around here, but shame on us in Kings Park for letting it get so bad.
Norman January 29, 2014 at 08:37 am
Negotiation only works if both sides feel they have something to gain. Shaming does notRead More work....The district should bring something to the table...perhaps salary reduction or a freeze now in exchange for something down the road. The idea that you will get something for nothing is silly, and saying it should happen won't amke it happen. Time to be realistic and creative.
Kings Park High School. (Patch file photo)
sally pruslow January 17, 2014 at 11:41 am
Dr. Agrusso stated at the Oct.8,2013 meeting that "this will be done at no extra cost to theRead More district". This was in reference to the reorganization of the district office. However, at Tuesday nights BOE meeting she elevated Ms. Meehan to the office of School Business Administrator and gave her a raise of 14,075. She received a 1.75% raise last June 25,2013. This raise she said was because the job is more demanding. Remember she said NO ADDITIONAL COSTS... She new it would be......We still need to hire an Assistant Superintendent for Personal and Administrative Services. The amount of salary that is left to pay this person is 126,730. This present market that will not fly!!! Maybe she ( superintendent) can say take it for the rest of the year and I will get you a raise in the 2014/15 budget....... We have not had a teacher's contract in three years!!! CSEA is going to need a new contract this coming year!!! She is giving herself and administrators raises....Why wouldn't the rest of the staff think they should also have raises???? Remember NO INCREASE.....Watch out, it is your tax dollars at work. Also will this new person need their own secretary???? When is this going to change. Every year she has balanced the budget on the backs of our children. She cuts teaching positions and increases class sizes. We need new leadership. We need a person who can be creative and lead this school district in a manner that will foster cooperation and trust, not intimidation and retaliation. Wake up Kings Park before it is too late. We are on the states list of school districts that are at risk for fiscal distress. This year there are 2 BOE seats are available. You need to choose new blood. We need a board that will pick a new Superintendent. Not renew the present Superintendents contract..... Which by the way is up June 2015. We need a fiscally responsible leader. A leader who will remember the importance of reasonable class size and how it effects are children's learning.
TURK 182 January 18, 2014 at 05:23 pm
But it's not only the teachers that lose positions every year. The custodians get cut every timeRead More someone retires or she needs to trim the budget. It's a skeleton crew that maintain the buildings and it shows. The maintenance and grounds crews are no better. How do you maintain all the grounds with only 3 guys? Has anyone seen the condition of the fields? It is all Dr. Agrusso doing. The district is in worse shape then anyone knows unless you work there. But then again you can't speak without being bullied by the big cheese and her associates!!
sally pruslow January 18, 2014 at 06:16 pm
You are right. They are working with very few people. I know this as a past board member I alwaysRead More complemented them on their tireless work, and how great are grounds and buildings were in comparison to other districts. These employees have always taken great pride in the condition of the grounds and the buildings. As I have said before this district is suffering!!!! Wakeup Kings Park!!!!!!
Kings Park superintendent Susan Agruso. (Patch file photo)
Roy Abrams December 24, 2013 at 11:24 am
What does it mean when adults voice their "moral indignation" without stopping to considerRead More the effects of their words and actions? Kevin McDonald and others of his ilk have demonstrated how little concern they have for the children who performed the song. Is this the best way to model effective communication for children?
pam king December 24, 2013 at 04:35 pm
I would hope that the chorus next year will be able to sing Silent Night rather than Jingle Bells orRead More Rudolph. There is a need to be tolerant to all, so let those who think Silent Night is problematic be tolerant to Christianity. Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.
ChudleyQ December 26, 2013 at 10:15 am
Roy Abrams: You have a very interesting take on this. You seem to give all of the responsibility forRead More the failure to “model effective communication for children” on Mr. McDonald (and his “ilk”). If you believe what Mr. McDonald said at the school board meeting and what he posted on the Patch (and there’s no reason NOT to believe it), he clearly attempted to engage Dr. Agruso in a PRIVATE dialogue on this issue, away from media attention and public scrutiny, but she wanted no part of it. So Mr. McDonald took his complaint to the school board, where members of the press attended. After the glare of the news spotlight became too hot and began to be focused on her, Dr. Agruso finally posted a letter of apology on the school website. If you remember, the original statement from the School Board on this issue denied any personal responsibility for Dr. Agruso (and the School Board) and attempted to place all the blame elsewhere (on two educators on her staff), even though Dr. Agruso is very generously compensated to supervise the entire school district. Do you think THIS was the best way for her to model effective communication for thechildren? Let’s also not forget that it was the school that adjusted the lyrics to the song and assigned that song to 5th graders. Seems to me that Dr. Agruso is more responsible for acting “without stopping to consider the effects of their words and actions” than Mr. McDonald and his “ilk”.
R.J. O Intermediate School in Kings Park (Photo Credit: Jennifer Sloat)
PCycle December 23, 2013 at 11:21 am
I say the music teacher should have a press conference and explain her actions.
Ben V December 23, 2013 at 06:13 pm
A menorah is the religious Jewish symbol for Hanukkah. A Christmas tree is NOT a religiousRead More Christian symbol for Christmas. The Nativity scene with Jesus, Mary & Joseph is the religious symbol for Christmas. Don’t be fooled or give in to the nonsense explanation that it’s the Christmas tree . At “holiday time” wherever the public school put a menorah, they must be honest and put the Nativity scene too. (They’ll only do it if we demand it.)
angela December 23, 2013 at 07:10 pm
Ben. You are 100% right about the Christmas tree being non-religious. If a menorah goes up. SoRead More should a nativity set. They put the tree up to shut Christians up. My children go to catholic schools so I don't run into those problems. But all my nieces and nephews go to public and I heard that. I have a feeling next year at the concert in kings park. They will sing frosty the snowman just to appease the Christians. I hope that does not happen. It should be a unedited religious song and a Hebrew song. Then everyone will be happy! Maybe!
A screenshot of the R.J.O. Intermediate School fifth-grade chorus video posted on Youtube by user moosnout on Dec. 15.
andrea abdulla December 24, 2013 at 05:43 pm
You all did the right thing, standing up for Christianity.It had to be done. Proud of my fellowRead More Kings Parkers.
Sue S. December 30, 2013 at 12:31 pm
Why is no one outraged about the fact that someone leaked a video of the performance, which clearlyRead More shows the faces of all those children with no regard to their privacy? Why was the press contacted in the first place?? I would be furious (as are some of my friends who's children are in that video are) if my child was all over the TV and internet without my permission! That should be a huge issue to any parent and it's not being talked about! The person responsible should be very ashamed of themselves!
ChudleyQ December 30, 2013 at 12:58 pm
I was concerned about the publicity part of this too. As I understand the timeline, the pressRead More wasn’t “contacted”. There was a Newsday reporter at the last School Board meeting, where the issue was first raised. She did a story in Newsday, and then it was picked up by the local media outlets (WCBS radio….where I first heard about it), including a couple of local TV stations. I can’t explain the posted video, but these days it’s easy enough to put things on YouTube. I agree, I would be unhappy if my child were shown, but I don’t know if there’s much you can do about it. It’s a lesson for everybody that video is everywhere and that there’s no such thing as “privacy” anymore. It’s also a good lesson on how quickly things can become “viral”, when people think it's a good story.