East Williston board of education to move ahead with North Side Fence

The East Williston board of education is moving ahead with a plan to fence in the North Side School. (Photo courtesy of East Williston public schools)

The East Williston Board of Education is moving forward with their plan to fence in the North Side School, President Mark Kamberg said at Tuesday’s meeting.

The board is currently reviewing safety concerns outlined in the Nassau County Department of Homeland Security report, Kabmerg said.

The board is also looking at recommendations from the Nassau County Police Department Homeland Security officer, the local precincts problem-oriented police officer and the districtwide safety committee report, Kamberg said. 

“The board has directed the administration to work with district counsel and the district architect to review the legal, physical and regulatory parameters in developing proposed plans for a North Side School fence,” Kamberg said. 

He added that the board intends to involve the East Williston village board as it moves forward with the elementary school fence. 

At a public meeting in June regarding the fence, some residents voiced concern for it, stating they didn’t’ think it would help with security and it would not be aesthetically pleasing.

Others, mainly parents, were in favor of a fence to help protect the children.

Police officers at the meeting said that while a fence, or any measure, cannot fully guard against intruders, it can delay and deter intruders – which can save many lives in case of a tragedy.

During the meeting, the board also voted to accept four areas residents said they wanted the district to prioritize in a survey during Tuesday’s meeting.

According to survey results, residents want the district’s next five-year strategic plan to focus on STEM skills, social-emotional growth, real-world learning, and facilities and security. STEM refers to science, technology, engineering and math.

The next step is for the district to implement these priorities, Superintendent Elaine Kanas said.

By around October or November, the district will present a plan to the board, Kanas said.

The district finished out its last strategic plan with the 2017-18 school year; the next one will take East Williston schools through 2022-23.

Residents were given 15 areas to prioritize in the survey, based on criteria put together from community input.

More than 800 people completed the survey, with parents accounting for 59 percent of survey participants. Twenty percent of responders were members of the school staff, 15 percent were 11th- and 12th-grade students, and 6 percent were community members.

On Tuesday the board also swore in Trustee Robert Fallarino and Trustee Leonard Hirsch who were each re-elected to the board with more than 300 votes in a May election.

The board also voted to approve Kamberg to serve as president of the board, and Fallarino to serve as vice president, again.

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