The Peekskill school district has received one response to its quest for marketing agents interested in the job of securing tenants for the Uriah Hill Elementary School building, the Board of Education was told last week. The proposal, from a Yorktown agent, has been referred to the district’s legal counsel for review, said Gregory Sullivan, assistant superintendent for business.
The district has been seeking an agent to market the vacant school to groups and individuals interested in leasing space in the Pemart Avenue building. The board has expressed hope that one or more tenants would move in by September.
In other action at the Tuesday night meeting of the Board of Education:
- The board scheduled a special meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 27, in the Administration Center. Topics include alternative education and an update on the 2012-13 budget.
- The board adopted updated versions of policies on Staff Complaints and Grievances and Conditional Appointment and Emergency Conditional Appointment–Student Safety and received first readings of updates on Gifts from Public, Board Member Training, Internal Audit Function and Audit Committee. “We are on track with our updates,” said board member Tuesday McDonald. To read the policies, please click here, then click on March 20, click on “view the agenda,” scroll down to Section I, then click on items 1-6.
- The district is reviewing whether there are enough students in certain occupational and technical education programs to make it more cost effective to educate them in Peekskill instead of sending them to the Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES).
- The Parent Teacher Organization is raising funds to erect a “Peekskill Middle School” sign outside the school.
- Board members met March 15 with members of the Peekskill Common Council regarding a shared-services agreement and plan to meet again in mid-May.
- The Wellness Committee is reviewing access to snack machines during lunch times and the possibility of establishing gardens at every school.
- In response to concerns voiced by teachers and others, the Code of Conduct Committee is revising a policy on student use of cell phones and other electronic devices in classrooms. While such devices can be useful research tools, they also can be easily abused, committee members said.
- The board accepted a $525 donation to the Peekskill High School Music Department from This Old Ghost (with additional thanks to Peekskill Brewery, Peekskill Coffee House, Dylan’s Wine Cellar, 2nd Nature Skate and La Villetta II) and a $110 donation to the Jason C. Paige Scholarship Fund from Dr. Annette Shands and Fran Feuerman.
- The board approved letting Authentic Science Research and Science Seminar students from Peekskill High School attend a June 26-28 career exploration program at Cornel University, Ithaca, NY.
- The board approved a cooperative purchasing contract with Orange/Ulster BOCES for the current school year at a cost not to exceed $42,103.75.
- The board approved having the Capital Area School Development Association conduct a search for a director of special education for the district at a cost not to exceed $10,500.
- The board accepted these grants: Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, $100,000; Race to the Top, $53,449; Title I (Improving the Academic Achievement of the Disadvantaged), prevention and intervention for youth who are neglected, delinquent, or at risk, $822,546; Title II, $180,092.
- The board accepted the resignation of Leslie Turton from the Audit Committee, with thanks for her years of volunteer service to the district.
- Tim Ball, speaking during the hearing of citizens, presented a packet of information about energy efficient lighting to the board. In a range of comments, Ball, who served 26 years as a Peekskill firefighter, voiced concerns about dog and goose droppings and the potential of discarded bottles to concentrate sunlight and cause fires. He also suggested that basic uniforms for students might reduce their concerns about clothing and enable them to concentrate more on academics.
- Resident George Ondeck, repeated his call at previous meetings for “quality education at reasonable cost.” Board President Joseph Urbanowicz assured him that “We are doing what we can to meet your goals.”
- The board adjourned in memory of Mary Crane, a teacher who retired in 1997 after 32 years of service and whom Urbanowicz described as “an inspirational teacher who touched my family personally”; Geraldine Kelly, a clerical substitute, typist and teacher aide who retired in 2003 after 21 years of service; and Wynette Young, a teacher aide who retired in 2000 after 16 years of service.