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Dr. Feirsen: District on its Way to Recovery

The Board of Education reconvened Tuesday night for the first time since Superstorm Sandy.

The Board of Education reconvened Tuesday night for the first time since Superstorm Sandy. (Credit: Nicole Murphy)
The Board of Education reconvened Tuesday night for the first time since Superstorm Sandy. (Credit: Nicole Murphy)
With two storms in two weeks, the Garden City Public School District encountered its share of setbacks but Superintendent of Schools Dr. Robert Feirsen said the district is on its way to recovery.

The Board of Education reconvened Tuesday night for the first time since Superstorm Sandy. Representatives from ConEdison and TG Nickel addressed the community regarding the district's condition just two weeks later.

ConEdison senior project manager Mark Litwinko spoke on the damage Sandy left throughout the district and how it impacted the ongoing energy performance project.

"I'm happy to say we incurred no damages to any electronic systems on the boilers throughout the whole district," Litwinko said. "We're still assessing a little bit of the Hemlock School right now. All systems are running, though, so all schools will have heat."

Of the project's progress, Litwinko added, "The ceiling and insulation work throughout the district is all complete. The solar work will be starting this week. We held it off because of the storm. All equipment will start arriving on the high school and middle school roofs this week and next week."

In other news, Dr. Feirsen shared his concerns regarding the storm. Without power and any means of communication, the students of Garden City missed several full days of school. Feirsen said he is waiting to hear from New York State on exactly how to handle the absences districtwide.

"Students have lost at least seven school days," Feirsen said. "That's a significant amount of time. We're required by New York State, in order to qualify for state aid, to have 180 days of school.

"I'd like our board and community to understand it's very possible that the winter recess, for example, could be shortened or abbreviated to some extent or maybe disappear," he added. "Students in AP classes for example, those tests are given in early May nationally. They're going to be given whether we had a storm or not. We can't change that."

Feirsen said he is hoping to hear from state officials in the near future.
Melanie Donus November 14, 2012 at 09:53 PM
If I had the positions of Dr. Feirsen, Dr. Celano, and Mr. Chase, I would have spent time socializing, networking, and thanking the overwhelming outcome from parents who attended the fundraiser at Tin Alley tonight to support their dedicated staff who were impacted by Storm Sandy. Needless to say, the opposite was observed.
Jack O'Niel November 15, 2012 at 09:17 AM
This comment from you does not surprise me.

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