Lynbrook Board of Education holds April meeting

Students and Staff at BOE Meeting thumbnail216848
Students and Staff at BOE Meeting thumbnail216849

The Lynbrook School District Board of Education held its regular meeting in the Lynbrook High School cafeteria on April 26.

To start off the meeting, the Bern Seiderman Art Gallery announced its April showcase, In the Shadows, which features abstract works of art which at first glance look like collections of junk. When illuminated, the sculptures’ shadows create new images with themes of lift, movement and form. The Gallery also features works inspired by Steve Casino’s “Little Monsters” series, which features creatures sculpted with clay and painted with acrylic paint.

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Melissa Burak recognized three students who received special honors. New York State Legislature hosted a virtual art exhibit, which included three works made by Lynbrook students Amelia Pollicino, Ronan Mansfield, and Gianna Marafioti.

Dr. Burak also announced the PTA Reflections Award of Excellence winner Cici Farr for her photography submission. The theme was “I will change the world by…,” and Cici’s art reflected the message that you don’t need to be a superhero to change the world.

Board of education trustees announced three retirements. Nelly Lombardi, bilingual clerk typist, will retire after six years in the Lynbrook High School guidance department; Benjamin Ferrante, front door monitor, will retire after more than 17 years at Lynbrook High School; and Carol Isaacson, teacher assistant, will retire after 19 years in the district.

Board of Education trustee Ellen Marcus shared an update on the Diversity Council. All goals were met in implementing inclusive curriculum and instruction in all grades. These include monthly discussions at faculty meetings regarding the NYS Education Department’s Culturally Responsive-Sustaining Education Framework, professional development on topics such as managing difficult conversations and the election of student leaders to serve as contributing members on the Diversity Council. Progress has also been made in strengthening and creating opportunities, access and educational quality for all students in our diverse community, which includes age-appropriate sensitivity workshops and supporting families with diverse needs.
Trustee Sean Murray also gave a shoutout to the High School’s production of Les Misérables, which took place in the refurbished auditorium, saying the students’ performances “would do a traveling professional theater company proud.”

Assistant Superintendent for Finance, Operations, and Information Systems Dr. Paul Lynch provided an update on the district’s bid for food service. The contract was originally set to expire in 2020 but was extended due to the pandemic. With the Food Committee, Dr. Lynch is exploring options of expanding the district’s food service into the elementary schools. He found that it would take roughly $300,000 to create a hot and cold food program, an expense that would need to be approved by voters. To start in a comfortable middle ground, the district is working with its food contractor on a pilot to supply a cold only program – salads, sandwiches, yogurts and more – for one or two days during the week next year. A survey will be sent out to parents after trying this option to gather opinions and gauge interest in moving forward.

The board adopted the 2022-23 Nassau BOCES proposed budget of $23,788,373. They also cast their votes in support of board candidates Ronald Ellerbe, Fran Langsner, Robert Schoen.

In her superintendent’s report, Dr. Burak extended a special congratulations to Matthew Sarosy, who will take the reins as principal of Lynbrook High School. The high school is the oldest, still-operational school across Long Island, and Mr. Sarosy will only be the 10th principal in the school’s more than 100-year history.

There was an increase in state aid for the Universal Pre-Kindergarten program, and available slots were increased from 66 to 94. Winners of the lottery were announced on April 28.

The Board adopted a Use of Reserves Plan that details proposals to allocate potential excess monies from the 2022 budget into the various district reserve fund. The plan has been posted to the district website.

Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment Dr. Gerard Beleckas discussed three new federal grants received over the last year. They have been utilized to increase support for the special education chairperson, bring in Kindergarten Center TAs for every classroom, hire more social workers and psychologists, offer summer enrichment and an increase to ELA and health staff next school year.

Dr. Lynch shared that the high school auditorium is still receiving final touches, and there is a moving platform in the Marion Street Elementary elevator project, a sign that it should be done before the end of the year. Plans for the Waverly Park courts are still being approved by the state, and bids for the project will hopefully be sent out over the next month.

Board President Dr. William Belmont announced the passing of Margaret Rosato, who served as a Lynbrook High School guidance secretary for 22 years.

The board accepted donations of $2,305 from the Marion Street PTA, $500 from the Community Chest South Shore, and $350 worth of supplies for the Waverly Park School musical from Home Depot.

Dr. Belmont reminded residents of the budget vote on Tuesday, May 17.

Date Added: 5/6/2022