• On December 12 from noon to 9 p.m., residents will be asked to vote on a $55 million capital projects referendum. 
    Attend a public forum at 6:30 p.m. November 9 at 630 66th Street.

    No increase to the school tax levy!

    Please read all about it!

     

    The Stewardship Project: protecting the community’s investment in public schools.

     

    Roofs. Windows. Paving. These are not exciting things to contemplate, but fail to think about them and things can get very exciting indeed-- and not in a good way. New York State helps districts think about avoiding that type of negative excitement.

    Every District is required to complete a periodic assessment of all its buildings. New York State Education Law and regulations require a building condition survey (BCS) for all occupied school buildings to be conducted at least every five years. Based on the findings of that survey, districts must then decide what action needs to be taken to protect the substantial investments communities have already made in their schools. Taking appropriate action also protects communities from having to scramble to deal with an unprepared-for calamity, like a leaking roof for example.  

    The District’s BCS drew attention to some needed projects. There are also some items that simply need to be addressed, and some that it just makes sense to address.

    Below are some highlights.

     

    Roofs & Lots

    New roofs are needed quite badly at Maple Avenue School and Cataract Elementary School. In addition, it seems like the ‘new’ high school opened yesterday, but in fact it was 2000 when the first students reported to class. The roof had been on the structure for some time before that memorable day, meaning the roof is nearing the end of its 20-year warranty-- and it shows. In this case, we can address the NFHS roof without replacing it; we can use a product that essentially seals it and comes with a 20-year warranty.

    Likewise, the well-used facility, which welcomes not only students but the community at large for events and programs that take place almost every day of the year, is surrounded by a well-used parking lot. It needs repair, too. Just take a drive there; see for yourself.

     

    Cataract: Bigger isn't always better

    Many will recall that before it was an elementary school, Cataract Elementary School was Niagara Middle School. Middle school students are larger than elementary school students, and with some students in Universal Pre-Kindergarten being only four-years-old, they are quite a bit smaller in stature than the 12-year-olds who used to attend the school. Desks can be changed, but not everything is easily adjusted to very small children, especially those who are mastering the most basic of skills. That is why we need to update the facilities to make them easier for the students to use. Imagine your home toilet was as high as your hip. It would create a problem, wouldn't it?

     

    GJ Mann

    Sections of sidewalk and curbs need to be repaired or replaced, the hardwood gym floor must be repaired and refinished, some acoustic ceiling tiles need to be replaced and new windows and window treatments are necessary to make the GJ Mann school plant what it should be. 

    Kitchen at 79th Street School

     

    Seventy-ninth Street School is the only remaining school with no hot kitchen. To build one within the existing footprint of the building is a goal of this projects. That’s an issue of parity; every student should be able to get meals of comparable quality, as fresh and as hot as possible. That is especially true in a community where some students may get their most nutritious meal during the school day.

     

    CAT 6 Wiring

    With the coming of full implementation of computer-based testing and all the technology in the classroom today, it is necessary to keep Ethernet and other technology cables compatible and up to the job of transmitting all the data needed among laptops, interactive white boards, and printers. Category 6 wiring will ensure we are able to use our investment in technology to the maximum degree with no problem, now and for the foreseeable future.

     

    Air Conditioning

    Four elementary schools --Mann, 79th, Hyde Park, and Maple need air-conditioning. As this autumn showed, there is no telling how long it will be hot outside and with extended school day programs and summer programming, this has become a greater issue. It is also an equity issue, as Niagara Street, Cataract, Kalfas, and Abate are already climate controlled year-long.