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304 Comments by lamm

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Southampton School Board Decides To Bring Tuckahoe Merger To A Straw Vote Again

If you don't think this is a close knit community perhaps it's your choice to live on the outside of it.
You're also wrong about when the Tuckahoe and Southampton kids meet. Many kids in Southampton and Tuckahoe are friends way before high school, mostly starts around 4 or 5 years old, in t-ball, sometimes religion, library activities, soccer, SYS, etc. Kids from Southampton and Tuckahoe share a lot. They have few if any friends from Sag Harbor, Bridgehampton or Hampton Bays (except HB kids that go to Tuckahoe). It's you who isn't being truthful. " Sep 20, 14 2:45 PM

Chief, there is nothing special about wanting a public education in the neighborhood where I live. Your comment is out of line." Sep 21, 14 12:17 AM

Tuckahoe does not have 15 kids in their Kindergarten classes, there are over 20, and if there is a single special ed kid that requires it, the class gets an additional teacher. The Superintendent came in from Pennsylvania, not the south, and lives in Southampton. He only moved here for this job, would you buy a house in a district on the brink? There was an application and interview process for Farina's job. Mr. Dyer was not a personal friend of Bob Grisnik, do you think all military people know eachother? The vote would have possibly been earlier had a few outspoken community members just let the process happen. I implore people to get informed also and make their own decision, but beware of taking the advice of people who have no clue what they're talking about." Sep 21, 14 6:42 PM

Chief, you're correct, many local people, including Shinnecocks, are hired by local districts, but do you have examples of more qualified teachers being passed over for less qualified locals? Is there an issue with hiring locally? How can you say that students can't learn common core when this is the first year it's fully implemented? Must be that crystal ball. Tuckahoe isn't going to "get a grip on expenses", they're facing a state takeover when the well runs dry. Do you really think that the state is going to continue to run Tuckahoe for years? Follow this through to it's logical conclusion. The districts will be merged anyway." Sep 21, 14 6:53 PM

No, he doesn't live in the house that the district purchased, he provides for himself. I am not blaming Southampton. The issue is that it's very expensive to run such a small district, with the tax cap in place we can no longer afford to send them to high school because the tuition is so high. A child should be able to go to school in their own community." Sep 21, 14 7:51 PM

Which statement? That the supervisor lives in a home provided by the district and that he doesn't provide for himself? If that's the one you're standing by, you are incorrect, as noted under your comment above. Whatever side you choose, please stick to the facts." Sep 21, 14 7:53 PM

And as for the "bullying", only those trying to prevent the vote are bullying. Two boards, duly elected, made a decision. Deal with it." Sep 21, 14 7:54 PM

I agree with you on including BH in the merger. Let's take that one step further. There are 17 separate school districts on the east end. It's a crazy waste of taxpayer money, and many of them should be merged. In alphabetical order, amagansett, bridgehampton, east hampton, east quogue, fishers island, hampton bays, montauk, quogue, remsenburg-speonk, sagaponak, sag harbor, shelter island, southampton, springs, tuckahoe, wainscott, westhampton beach. With the exception of the two island districts, they can all be consolidated into 5 districts, East, South, West, Bays and Sag Harbor. Overall it would save a small fortune.
Southampton and Tuckahoe need to do a better job with information, most people don't go to the meetings, but it was discussed that they would be cutting several top administrators and some teachers if the merger went through. After getting rid of redundancy, they thought there would be 4 million in savings (as reported by the press). There is no plan to get rid of buildings, as they will likely need them all. " Sep 22, 14 9:59 PM

Chief, do you know ANY of the facts? Tuckahoe will cease to exist. Southampton will decide what happens to the building. It will be ANYTHING BUT business as usual. " Sep 22, 14 10:03 PM

Most of the jobs slated to be cut were at the top, there is no job guarantee there. As far as teacher tenure, the newer teachers would be the first to go, and tenure doesn't prohibit layoffs anyway.
My taxes will supposedly go down about $2000 per year over the course of 10 years. In comparison to the rest of long island, even Tuckahoe has low taxes, it's not big money in the scheme of things, neither is your increase. If it were up to me, I would request that we keep taxes in Tuckahoe as they are and merge, but I'm told that it isn't legal to do that. I am more concerned with my child (and the other kids in Tuckahoe) being able to go to school in their own neighborhood, like everyone else on the east end, and not have them feel like outsiders. These kids are the future of Southampton, and I don't think it's too much to hope that they will be taken care of. It takes a village." Sep 23, 14 12:24 PM

David, Tuckahoe does inquire, they have an investigator that follows people suspected of not living in district. I think its more rumor that the kids don't live in district. The problem is that the town doesn't close the converted motels on north road and the homes that have 10 kids each. Tuckahoe notifies the town, that's all they can do, the school pressures but can't enforce. If they find that a kid lives out of district they are gone. I've seen it happen more than once." Sep 23, 14 10:37 PM

Chief, you know so little about both Tuckahoe and Southampton. When the end all is the dollar, and you are willing to post a non stop stream of nonsense to protect that dollar, it's no longer worth my time." Sep 23, 14 10:42 PM

Tuckahoe cut 20% of their teaching staff in the last 3 years, you would be aware of that if you attended meetings. " Sep 24, 14 5:48 PM

David, Tuckahoe changed their policies last year, requiring more documentation, leases, etc. I also understand that the investigator spends a lot of time trying to verify that the kids actually live in those hotels. I don't know how the owners of those places get away with it, and I know one was closed down last year, but there are still more than one remaining. I think Harald Steudte is leading the drive to verify residency, he ran on that platform and I know the school has been doing more." Sep 24, 14 6:16 PM

Straw Vote: "An unofficial vote taken to obtain an indication of the general trend of opinion on a particular issue." To further clarify what Dodger says above.
A straw vote is needed to see if there is enough interest to pursue a binding vote. It's difficult for a school board to gauge interest based upon a handful of people who post against it on 27east, or the small numbers who attend meetings who have been overwhelmingly in support of a merger. There are some new details and incentives about the merger that make it easier financially on the Southampton taxpayers (yes, one of the incentives is giving SH SD taxpayers back their own money because an administrative building will no longer be needed if there is a merger). The ability to vote is the backbone of this country, and we should all be at a loss as to why a few vocal writers are so upset about giving thousands of voters a voice by pursuing a non-binding STRAW VOTE.
" Sep 26, 14 8:59 AM

Hampton Bays Residents Blast Board, Again, Over Illegal Housing

The solution locally isn't to tax families by the kid, nor is it to raise taxes on the wealthy. If they live here, there's nothing the schools themselves can do, there are laws that say they must educate the kids. Overcrowded homes and hotels rented for long term use violate zoning laws. The solution is for the town to just do the job they are supposed to do. I don't understand why it is so difficult." Sep 29, 14 7:29 PM

Community Forum On Extended Day Learning Grant Scheduled For Wednesday At Southampton High School

The best way to add time to the school year is by eliminating some of the vacations and holidays, and perhaps shortening the summer break. These constant breaks in school take away from learning and retention. It also seems that the week or two before summer break and a few days before each vacation break, learning stops, there's more of a party atmosphere in school. We don't need a full two weeks for Christmas, a week for "presidents week" AND a week for Easter. If a child wants to celebrate Rosh Hashanah and Good Friday parents can keep the kids home as an excused absence, I'll bet 98% show up at school, they're not federal holidays and most parents have to work. We also don't need three days off for Thanksgiving (5 including the weekend). We do need more than 180 days of learning, but we don't need longer days, especially with the overwhelming homework load the kids come home with these days." Sep 29, 14 8:22 PM

Yes Nature. I absolutely would have benefitted by more time in school. We are in a global economy and we are falling behind." Sep 29, 14 10:41 PM

Extending the year makes so much more sense, " Sep 30, 14 10:01 PM

Southampton Rejects Proposal, And State Grant,To Extend School Day After Parents Express Concerns

I have to agree with you here chief. Poland spring, there is flexibility as far as how it's done, it doesn't have to be the same across the board, it can be age appropriate, perhaps a half an hour longer in the early grades. It would be a really great thing to keep 6th and 7th graders in school more, at an age where their hormones and poor judgment seem to come to the forefront and they think their friends know more than their parents! Learning is a much better use of their time than what most of them do after school. The real issue is the teacher's contracts, they will demand hefty raises in exchange for the extra hours." Oct 3, 14 10:27 PM

So many people complain that the school district isn't any good. I don't agree, I think any school is only as good as the educational support the kids get from their families at home. If a kid wants and can handle higher level learning in high school, it's available. The fact that so few people take advantage of it is astounding. But because there is a huge lack of parental involvement in many of our east end schools, a longer school day for the majority of the kids would be beneficial, with the school again doing the work that many parents don't have the time or interest for. The parents that go to the meetings are involved, but there are so, so many who aren't. Those kids would benefit greatly from ELT." Oct 3, 14 10:39 PM

April, I've heard you at the meetings and on these boards. As a parent, I have to wonder why you would keep your child in a school that you clearly despise." Oct 3, 14 10:41 PM

Hampton Bays Residents Blast Board, Again, Over Illegal Housing

I'm not sure where you got that from...the solution is for the town to do the job they are supposed to do, which is enforce our laws on overcrowded homes!" Oct 3, 14 10:50 PM

Southampton Rejects Proposal, And State Grant,To Extend School Day After Parents Express Concerns

I don't really care what the definition is, their scores and progress in the high school clearly indicate that the majority of the kids either need more parental involvement or more time in the classroom. The district can't force the parental involvement, but realize that the kids need more time in the classroom." Oct 3, 14 11:24 PM

April, I just went to their website and not only does Southampton clearly NOT meet their criteria for having Extended Learning Time, there is a database that lists schools that do meet the criteria and Southampton is not on that list. I did find the following on their website:
"Not only does more time allow for longer class periods in which students can examine topics in greater depth, but expanded-time schools are also able to set aside whole periods each day to focus on small-group instruction to address and overcome student learning deficits. More time also helps to ensure the inclusion of the critical classes that too often have been scaled back, such as science, social studies, and foreign languages"" Oct 3, 14 11:52 PM

There is the option of extending the school year as well. Look at this year's calendar. Between Dec 20th and April 11th school is closed for more than a month (2 weeks for Christmas, a week+ for Spring Recess and a week for Mid Winter Recess). That's a full month off in less than 4 months. During those breaks, most kids are home, many parents are working, it's completely unproductive time, plus these big breaks in learning set the kids back. It's also feasible to keep them in school a week or two longer at the beginning and the end of the year, give the elementary students an extra half hour and the middle school another hour. It doesn't need to be a 10 hour day. There are other creative ways to improve and increase learning time. Your child may not need the extra time, you seem pretty hands on, but most children will benefit, and it's the schools responsibility to do what benefits most. Elementary and Middle School are only 9 years of their life, but set the stage for the next 50." Oct 4, 14 10:19 AM

That's pretty funny, I'm not a fan of common core either, but most parents don't like it because its too challenging! " Oct 5, 14 12:24 PM

I have a better idea Chief, parent reform. I can't say that I'm thrilled with all teachers, but most are good and do their job. Despite spending the same or more hours in the classroom than other top countries, despite all the money we throw at the schools, our children are trailing behind other countries. Before international students take even more of our top college seats, perhaps it's time to stop blaming the schools. The children with parents who are involved in their education are doing far better than those who aren't. That's the main reasons that parochial school students fare so well on far less money." Oct 7, 14 9:33 AM

Tuckahoe School Superintendent To Leave District In December

April, there will no longer be two districts that need to cooperate, there will only be Southampton." Oct 22, 14 2:29 PM

Shinnecock Tribe Member Angered Over Beach Parking Fees

The fee is for the parking lot. Anyone can walk on for free. If you don't want to pay the parking fee you can park in the village lot and take the Hamptons Free Ride to Coopers." Oct 27, 14 9:56 PM

Southampton And Tuckahoe Officials Present Merger Plans To Residents

Park the extra buses at the neighboring property that Tuckahoe purchased.
" Oct 30, 14 11:14 PM

Shared Superintendent A Possibility For Tuckahoe School District

April, how could you possibly say that there is no community benefit? Sending kids who live in the community elsewhere for their education will fracture the community. I hope you don't teach your kids that kind of garbage. ." Oct 30, 14 11:25 PM

No Chief, the teachers will all be mixed up, the students will be mostly Southampton SD students. Where do you get your mis-information from anyway?
" Oct 30, 14 11:27 PM

April, do you feel that if someone forced all kids in Southampton Elementary School (including yours) to go to Hampton Bays or Westhampton that it would have no effect on this community? " Oct 31, 14 10:01 PM

Nobody has a guarantee of their tax bill, ever. Southampton is no different. Kevin is right, red herrings. Then you have those like April who absolutely feel that the Southampton School District is a detriment to her own children. If I thought a district was harming my children, I would remove them. Obviously she cares as little for her own child's well being as she does about Tuckahoe's." Oct 31, 14 10:04 PM

East End Towns, Villages Will Introduce Bans On Plastic Bags

Aldi provides no free bags, you have to buy them, perhaps that's an angle to discourage the use of plastic bags. We don't need more laws, we're being legislated to death. Government is out of control at all levels." Oct 31, 14 11:04 PM

Shared Superintendent A Possibility For Tuckahoe School District

Cleaning the schools was an incredible waste of money. " Nov 1, 14 11:02 PM

Preliminary Tuckahoe, Southampton School Merger Vote To Take Place Tuesday

Chief, this merger is perfect. The entire state is watching. You and seashell are going to change as many minds as bayviews exclamation points will. Your claims and numbers change constantly, in fact you list two different percentages just under this article alone. $ aside, this is the right direction." Nov 16, 14 12:19 AM

UPDATE: Tuckahoe-Southampton Merger Fails At Polls

Where do you get your numbers from? It lost by 94 votes out of over 2000. No doubt the state will find a way to get this done, it might just take a little longer, and the incentives will be gone." Nov 18, 14 9:42 PM

No, you are incorrect about redistricting, the state has the power to do so. Time will tell though. Either way, we will all survive, and you will be $300 richer, so don't you worry." Nov 18, 14 10:46 PM

A regional high school sounds wonderful. We need to take control of our own destiny, and put forward an idea that doesn't leave our future in the hands of larger districts. If other small tuition paying districts (and the reservation) take our tuition dollars elsewhere and join forces we can create a regional high that works for US. " Nov 19, 14 7:45 AM

Spendthrift, you can spend $100,000 per student, but achievement will not be raised until the local families become more involved in their children's education and stop blaming the schools for all their kids issues." Nov 19, 14 9:57 PM

Spendthrift, your comment was beyond moronic....I am just trying to point out that issues with children learning go way beyond what a school alone is capable of. If you spent any time actually in the school, you would realize that the kids who do well, take advanced classes, etc. are those whose parents are involved and actually show up on the minimally attended parent teacher conferences. No, I have nothing to do with the school, but I am one of those involved parents." Nov 20, 14 11:29 AM

I agree chief, it would be great if WH was bought back as an option. But in the long run, Westhampton is just as expensive as Southampton. If I had my way, my neighbors would vote to pierce the cap and bring everything back to the way it was a few years ago, a great neighborhood school with a choice for high school. Even if our taxes went up $1000 a year, we would still be very low compared to the rest of long island, but we would make it up in property value. We've had a very difficult time with budgets passing though." Nov 20, 14 11:36 AM

I believe Tuckahoe has about the same spending per student as Southampton. Southampton is three times the size, and spending should be less. In the long run though, every single piece of data will show that larger school districts spend less, and spending is in no way tied to test score results. Mergers all over the island should be taking place. The problem in our area is that Southampton taxes are so ridiculously low that they will never want to merge with any other district that doesn't offer them an immediate tax advantage. Tuckahoe needs to pierce the cap to save itself, our neighborhood and property values." Nov 20, 14 11:45 AM

The children aren't lobbying for taxes, they're lobbying for community and friendship. I would NEVER tell my child not to do that. Remember also that those lobbying are likely repeating what's being said in their household, a household that does pay taxes. Some voted this year, and more will all be at the polls next year, and the year after, and they have as much right to an opinion as you do. " Nov 20, 14 1:42 PM

Southampton Voters Reject Tuckahoe Merger Proposal A Second Time

I haven't seen or heard of a single thing coming from the school to the students regarding the merger. Information that the kids have was likely provided by their parents and friends. I hope there is not another vote either, whatever is going to happen needs to happen, more votes keep Tuckahoe school families and kids in limbo." Nov 20, 14 7:02 PM

I totally agree with you Witch Hazel...time to move on. There's a board member with a child in Southampton High who has asked other kids to sacrifice and get pulled out of Westhampton (thankfully it never came to that). Now let's see if he will dare ask his own child to sacrifice." Nov 20, 14 7:06 PM

UPDATE: Tuckahoe-Southampton Merger Fails At Polls

Who are they "brown nosing" to? If the district were behind the sit in, it would have taken place before the vote, not after. The sit in was to show their disappointment in the adults, and whether or not you agree with them, they should be encouraged to stand up for what they feel is right. If Tuckahoe survives another three or four years, these 600 kids will have voting rights and will still likely not pay taxes...but will have the power to shift a future vote in a different direction." Nov 20, 14 10:10 PM

You are clearly out of touch with reality naz." Nov 21, 14 7:45 AM

Not Tuckahoe's problem, we have no debt at least! " Nov 21, 14 10:21 AM

What was expanded for Tuckahoe?" Nov 22, 14 12:44 AM

So I guess half your community is out of touch!
" Nov 22, 14 10:53 PM

Tuckahoe Superintendent Of Schools To Remain At District, With A Raise

Where are we? Having fun watching you Southampton taxpayers obsess over Tuckahoe! LOL." Dec 3, 14 10:36 PM

Hampton Bays, Westhampton Beach Open To Taking On Tuckahoe Students

Chief has no idea what he's talking about...classes of 14? Not at Tuckahoe. With the amount of time Mr. Dyer puts in at the school he's probably earning $20 an hour. Tuckahoe faces an uncertain future, and if it took more money to keep an experienced person at the top, than so be it. We cannot possibly go forward with an unexperienced superintendent. The raise will pay for itself easily.
As far as talk of merging with Southampton, let it go. Time for Tuckahoe to move forward without Southampton. I do feel bad for the sports issue. There is so little for kids out here, and sports is a great way to keep them from getting into trouble. Tuckahoe kids excel at Westhampton, and it's a great school. Many didn't want to send their kids there in the past because of the feeling of "community", but now I think we will find that it is no longer an issue." Dec 6, 14 10:00 PM

Yes chief, we WERE all being asked to be a sharing, caring community. You were one of the loudest voices against that idea. Mr. Dyer is anything but elitist, and as is always the case when it comes to Tuckahoe, you have no idea what you're talking about. Mr. Dyer has to answer to the three men on the Tuckahoe board, who all very badly want a merger with Southampton. It is his job to push their agenda. Yes, I do think he deserves a raise, and he has done so much for the school that you would have no clue about. If you really had an idea, you would know that Tuckahoe is at the forefront of teacher evaluations and the new accountability laws, AYP, etc. as well as getting them ready for the inevitable common core, training teachers in the new concepts years ago." Dec 7, 14 8:28 PM

The best schools on Long Island with the best results are paying a minimum of $10,000 in taxes for a 3 bedroom ranch on 1/8th of an acre. Their kids get the highest SAT scores, better state scores and have the most AP classes. They also field the best sports teams. Chief, you enjoy the lowest taxes on Long Island, but perhaps you are getting exactly what you pay for." Dec 8, 14 6:56 PM

Chief, If I could afford OLH and wanted my children to learn a religion other than their own, I would consider it. My choices are what they are. I don't spend a lot of time complaining about the school because my children get a lot of support at home and do very well. I can promise you though that despite what you believe to be true, Tuckahoe is a really nice, sweet school and there is a reason Tuckahoe kids are very often at the top of their class in Southampton. I would rather pay higher taxes and actually like the district those taxes support. It must be difficult for you to hate the school you pay taxes to." Dec 8, 14 9:58 PM

C'mon Molly...I know you're dying to tell him it's "You're worried"

:)" Dec 8, 14 10:09 PM

I do pay for it, and a good part of yours as well." Dec 9, 14 2:38 PM

Tuckahoe Parents Want Board To Explore Merging With Westhampton Beach

You don't really think that Southampton is educating Tuckahoe kids at a loss, do you? That's ridiculous April." Dec 10, 14 6:28 PM

Agreed! April thinks that if Tuckahoe pulls out, they will actually be $12,000 ahead for each Tuckahoe student pulled. OMG. Their per student cost will rise and with a 2% cap that goes mostly to the staff, they would need to start cutting. She would be in for a rude awakening if Tuckahoe board actually had the B- - - to send the kids elsewhere, by the time her kids got to high school she would be singing a different tune. " Dec 10, 14 11:18 PM

If that were the truth (in our case anyway) we would not be seeking an alternative like Westhampton, as it would not have real tax implications (our rates are similar). It's a FACT all over NYS that small districts like Tuckahoe will all be forced to seek merger partners. Clearly Southampton wants us only as a paying customer, not a partner. THAT Chief, is the issue. Send them to Westhampton this year, let's see how that goes. We need an alternative, Southampton is not part of the solution, now there is no reason to keep paying them more than Westhampton for an inferior education. " Dec 11, 14 7:29 AM

If they weren't making a profit they wouldn't have strong armed Tuckahoe into taking away Westhampton as an option. This isn't rocket science. " Dec 11, 14 7:51 AM

Chief, Did someone really say that Southampton is so much more expensive than Westhampton Schools? The costs are similar. The WH education is superior. We got the message, but apparently our board hasn't, they are still trying to negotiate with Southampton and push for more merger votes. You and I agree on one thing, no more merger votes! Send the kids elsewhere. If we can't survive after a couple of years, the state can step in and make this decision for us, or dissolve the school completely." Dec 11, 14 9:00 AM

I agree with you, close the school and tuition them out, but to the school of their choice, NO MORE EXCLUSIVE DEALS. Our taxes will go down AND Tuckahoe parents can decide which school is best for their child. This could be a great way to lower our taxes, and increase our property value because a district that offers choice would be more sought after." Dec 11, 14 7:57 PM

Hampton Bays, Westhampton Beach Open To Taking On Tuckahoe Students

Chief, you are full of it and you know it. You'll say anything to save a bit of money. Southampton built nothing for Tuckahoe, and if we weren't a cash cow Southampton wouldn't have forced Tuckahoe to give them an exclusive in exchange for the same tuition that Westhampton was charging. Why would they want more students if it's a loss? That's just moronic." Dec 11, 14 9:10 PM

Southampton is cleaning out their infrastructure account anyway, so you will have your $9,000,000 building and all the expenses that come along with that. " Dec 11, 14 9:12 PM

Chief, are you really that dense? A school in my community was always my first choice to merge with, but clearly that's not going to happen. Tuckahoe won't survive long term, I don't even want to hear your bs that Tuckahoe overspends, because we're more fiscally responsible than your school hands down. As far as the other issues you raise with school and teachers, I don't necessarily disagree with you, but that's statewide and there's nothing you or I can do about that at the moment. Mr. Dyer's raise may not look great, but it isn't going to make or break Tuckahoe. There are many families in Tuckahoe that want Westhampton back as a choice and there is no reason they shouldn't have it. How many times do you think we're going to be rejected by Southampton and not feel like we should go elsewhere? You're wrong about the law. If we don't find a merger partner, one of two things will happen, both of which will lower my taxes. The state CAN re-district or force the merger. They don't like to, but they can. The other option is tuitioning all kids out to either or a choice of SH, HB or WH. If they re-district, you lose any and all state incentives. If we tuition, you get kids on tuition, but will have to deal with where you're going to put them all because you don't get to keep the beautiful Tuckahoe school or grounds, and there are maximums you are allowed to charge in tuition. Perhaps Tuckahoe will rent the school to you, the Tuckahoe taxpayers would still own it. Or maybe we can rent it out as a Rec Center for our end of town, put an indoor pool and make it like the East Hampton Y! As far as your tax bill, I've subsidized it for years…let's not get greedy now! LOL." Dec 13, 14 12:00 AM

He can't back up his nonsense Molly, he's all hot air. Now he's clearly getting nervous about the prospect of losing the Tuckahoe kids and tuition. The nightmarish thought that his ridiculously low taxes might go up a little probably keeps him up at night, thinking up all this nonsense." Dec 13, 14 12:03 AM

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