The Mineola school district will purchase a $4.25 million commercial property following a community referendum Tuesday that overwhelmingly approved the project to expand the high school campus.
In a tweet after the polls closed, School Superintendent Michael Nagler wrote, “The vote to purchase the Sperry building passed. 499-249 (66%) Thank you Mineola!”
The property sits at 2400 Jericho Turnpike in Garden City Park and is adjacent to Mineola High School. The building was the home of Sperry Associates Federal Credit Union, which was acquired by Pentagon Federal Credit Union after a merger in September 2020.
A new program, Synergy, will take place on the property and serve as an innovative method of learning, according to the district.
In a Q&A with Deputy Superintendent Matthew Gaven on YouTube, Nagler went over the benefits he sees with the property.
Nagler said the property, which hasn’t been available for about 20 years, drew a lot of interest from potential buyers and will allow the district to create a new campus.
“The proximity to the building is really the draw for what we can do going forward … I would think of it as a millennial campus,” he said.
Nagler said the Synergy program will focus on individualizing education for students that keeps up with the rate of technology expanding.
“We’re trying to really capture what current students go through when they go to school,” Nagler said. “School should be a place where you follow the love of learning and not grudgingly take classes because you have to.”
In an email to Blank Slate Media, Nagler said, “The Board and I would like to thank the community for its support in the purchase of the ‘Sperry’ building. We are excited to continue to build and iterate on the Synergy high school concept. We are determined to personalize the structure of high school with the emphasis on student agency.”
Undesignated fund balance monies, otherwise known as the district’s surplus, will be used to finance the purchase. Nagler said the district hired an independent appraiser for the 1.5-acre property, which was valued at $4.25 million.
Any associated costs with the purchase will be outlined in the next budget, Nagler said. Added revenue will come from assuming a lease with Verizon for cell towers atop the building.