Story by Lisa Rice
During their monthly meeting on Mon., Nov. 19, the Warwick Valley Central School Board of Education authorized a refund of $30,760.97 in school taxes to 22 residents who had their property assessments reduced. The refunds ranged from $215 to 3,760 depending on the amount of the assessment reduction.
Any property owner who believes that the assessment on their property is incorrect has the right to appeal their assessment to the town assessor each year on grievance day, typically held in the spring. A reduction in assessment could result in a decrease of not only school taxes, but also Town and Village taxes.
Board Accepts Monetary Awards
A donation of $1,000 to the Laura Breitman Promising Artist Award was accepted. This scholarship award was created in Breitman’s memory by her husband, Michael Needleman and is to be awarded to a Warwick High School senior who is a gifted artist and plans to pursue a career in the arts. Three finalist will be chosen from the WVHS Art Department and Needleman will choose the recipient.
In September, Coach Greg Sirico was named High School Coach of the Week by the New York Jets & Gatorade. Sirico received a Gatorade cooler, fuel bars, squeeze bottles and powder mix in a Gatorade kit. As part of his prize, a $2,000 donation was made to the Warwick High School Football program and accepted by the School Board.
The Wildcats will also receive an automatic bid to compete in the New York Jets 7on7 Tournament in 2019. Sirico has been invited to MetLife Stadium on Sun., Dec. 23 to watch the Jets play the Green Bay Packers from a luxury suite and he will be presented with a certificate and award ball.
Board Approves School District Plans
Three Warwick Valley Central School District Plans were approved: the 2018-2019 Smart School Plan and the professional development plan, with the shared mission “to create an educational system that supports learning in a changing society and prepares all students for a successful life in and beyond”; and the 2018-2023 Physical Education Plan, which combines traditional physical education, kinesiology and 21st Century learning skills. Full text of each of plan is available at boarddocs.com/ny/wvcsd/Board.nsf/Public.
Four Field Trips Approved
The Board approved the four field trips. Thirty high school biology students will visit SUNY New Paltz Biology department on Jan. 3. High School students will attend the Junior Science and Humanities Symposium at Burnt Hills – Ballston Lake High School on Jan. 26. The Wire Choir will travel to Denver, CO from Apr. 13 to Apr. 18. Lastly, the Board approved the high school senior trip to Boston, MA from Apr. 25 to Apr. 27.
Superintendent Provides STEM Presentation
Superintendent Dr. David Leach shared a presentation on STEM that he made recently highlighting the District resources and best practices in preparing students for their futures and leveraging an interdisciplinary approach to education.
According to Leach, the District recognizes the importance of integrating Arts into learning, using the term “STEAM” in place of STEM, offering real world experiences, advanced placement courses, dual enrollment with CTE and Agricultural programs, bridging gender gaps and designing units of instruction with an end in mind.
At the elementary level, the District has added instructional technology, the first LEGO league, outdoor classrooms, and courses in basic engineering and computer coding.
The middle school has added courses in automation and robotics, computer science, green agriculture and design and modeling. There is also new technology in the tech room.
The high school now offers courses in engineering design, principles of engineering, biomedical science, a three-year science research program, civil engineering and an AP Computer Science course. Additionally, they have a Robotics Team that can compete with other schools throughout New York.
Each school building has outdoor wireless service, security cameras and license plate scanners, their own mobile app, 3D printers, and home checkout of computer equipment.
New Middle School Schedule Considered
There will be a workshop on Mon., Nov. 26 at the Dorothy C. Wilson Education Center to discuss a new schedule at the middle school.
Performing Arts Moment
Before the meeting began, the School Board was treated to a rendition of the Fleur De Lis March performed by members of the sixth grade band and introduced by band instructor Ryan Muelbauer.
Next Board Meeting
The next School Board meeting will be held on Mon., Dec. 10 at 7 p.m. in the Dorothy C. Wilson Education Center, located at 225 West St. in Warwick.