The “Joe and Dan Road Show” continued last Thursday at Harbor Hill School, as Superintendent of Schools Dr. Dan Brenner and Joe Dragone, the Assistant Superintendent for Business made another informal presentation on both the 2014-2015 budget and a wide-ranging bond referendum on internal improvements to schools throughout the Roslyn School District.
A video presentation by Roslyn High School senior Daniel Fishbach emphasized the need for renovation, focusing on security issues as a major reason behind the bond vote.
The video gave parents both views of current conditions at the schools and what benefits the renovations would bring. At Roslyn High School, East Hills School, Harbor Hill School and The Heights School, renovations on the front entrance would enhance security by allowing school district personnel to better monitor who goes in and out of the building.
The video also focused on the specific improvements that could come to each school.
For Roslyn High School, improvements would be made on the athletic fields. In addition, there would be an entirely new gymnasium for such winter sports teams as basketball, volleyball and wrestling. That gym would be located where the administrative offices are now housed. In addition, air conditioning would be installed in the library, the new gym and the renovated administrative offices. Another major project would involve the bus garage. The old garage, district officials have noted, is part of the old Roslyn High School, a building first constructed in the 1920s. The garage would find a new location on the campus, while the old location would be demolished, giving room for more parking spaces at the high school.
Air conditioning, as with new entrances for improved security, is part of the proposed renovations for the East Hills School. The cafeteria, library and second floor classes would all receive air conditioning units.
Meanwhile, the Roslyn Middle School would see new lighting in the cafeteria, plus paving and draining projects and upgraded lights for nighttime events, while Harbor Hill Elementary School would be targeted for library renovation, resulting in a 2,400 sq. ft. learning center.
Finally, the Heights School, in addition to air conditioning upgrades, will have a new fire alarm installed, plus more space for athletic fields and library renovations. The restoration projects, Fishbach said, would respect the “historical nature of the school.”
Dragone then explained the cost benefits of the bond referendum. He said the school district has $36 million outstanding in loans, all of which will be paid off by 2024, with a great bulk of it paid off by both 2016 and 2022. The district, he added, has $4 million in cash on hand and $9.2 million in reserves. Added on to that number is $2.6 million in state aid that is coming to the school district. All this, Dragone said, would reduce the entire cost of the bond to $25.5 million. In all, the cost to the average homeowner in the school district would be less than $60 a month.
From now until the budget vote on May 20, Brenner and Dragone will continue to -hold informational presentations on the bond referendum. The presentations will provide residents with an opportunity to learn about both the bond proposal as well as the budget for 2014-15. They will continue to address such questions as the need for the vote, the cost to taxpayers and the impact on the budget.
The list of meetings for the remainder of April and for May are as follows:
• Monday, April 28, 7:30 p.m., Village of East Hills
• Tuesday, April 29, 7 p.m., Temple Sinai
• Monday, May 5, 7 p.m., Pre-K Parents at Heights School
• Wednesday, May 7, 7:30 p.m., Bulldog Booster Association at Roslyn High School
• Thursday, May 8, 9:30 a.m., CCPA District Budget Presentation at East Hills School
• Monday, May 12, 9 a.m., Roslyn Middle School Parent Faculty Association
• Thursday, May 15, 9:30 a.m., East Hills School Parent Faculty Association.