Board approves new principal for Willets Road School

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Board trustee David Keefe talked about all of the teachers who were approved for tenure at the April 29 meeting. (Photo by Shelby Talcott)

The East Williston Board of Education approved Christine Dragone as the new principal for Willets Road School on Monday night.

Currently, Robert Hanna is the interim principal for the school.

The board unanimously approved Dragone to become the new principal starting July 1. This is a four-year position. Previously, Dragone worked at North Side School as an assistant principal.

Prior to working in the East Williston school district, Dragone worked in various teaching positions with the New York City Department of Education.

“We’re certainly excited to appoint Christine Dragone as our new middle school principal tonight,” said Mark Kamberg, president of the Board of Education. “We know that she’s going to do great things in our district and we are really very excited to move her forward into our principal position.”

Kamberg also announced plans to improve safety at the crosswalk at North Side School. District Clerk Melisa Byrns said later that the county intends to enhance the safety of the crosswalk.

This follows a joint meeting with the Department of Public Works that included board members, school officials, county Legislature members and parents. Kamberg said that the board has been working with the Legislature and village to make the crosswalk in front of the school safer.

“We are proud and happy and excited to say that they recognized the unsafe conditions and plan to implement changes,” said Kamberg.

He said the changes include flashing beacons at the crosswalk, new warning signs ahead of the crosswalk, widening the crosswalk and adding crocodile type warning strips.

He also requested that the board approve sending a second letter to local police to ask for an officer to be present at the crosswalk during peak hours. This action was approved by the board.

Nine current teachers were recommended for tenure at the board meeting, with the board unanimously approving all nine. The teachers approved for tenure are Thomas Sposato, Jason Craven, Michael Dunn, Jacquelyn Heney, Cie Gardet, Angeliki Kyrou, Donald J. Paulson, Kristen Thomas and Linda Bonasia.

The board also discussed the current status of the 2019-20 school calendar. It was not adopted at the meeting. Kamberg said that the calendar has school beginning on Sept. 3 and ending on June 26. Kamberg said that includes a two-week vacation in December, a full week vacation in February and a break in April.

The board recognized the mock trial team at the meeting. The team lost its first mock trial and then went undefeated for the remainder of the season. The mock trial team will go to the state competition from May 19-21 to vie for the state title.

 

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