Story by Lisa Rice
The Warwick Valley Central School Board held their regular meeting on Thurs., Apr. 19 at the Dorothy C. Wilson Education Center. The meeting began with the School Board members retreating into a closed-door Executive Session to discuss the employment history of a District employee.
When they returned, it was business as usual, approving prior minutes and reviewing correspondence. Superintendent Dr. David Leach received a letter from NYS Senator John Bonacic congratulating the District on the success of Warwick’s teams in the regional Odyssey of the Minds tournament held in Binghamton, NY.
Three of Warwick’s teams will move on to the World Finals at the end of May. A second letter was sent to Timothy Holmes, Assistant Superintendent of Business by Rosemary Cooper, Director of the Albert Wisner Public Library, thanking the District for their support in the recent library budget vote.
BOCES Budget Approved
The Board approved a resolution to vote to approve the Orange-Ulster BOCES 2018-2019 Administrative Budget in the amount of $7,040,742 and authorize the District Clerk to certify and transmit the approval to Orange-Ulster BOCES District Clerk.
The budget is voted on by component schools and each District pays a percentage of the BOCES administrative budget based on their Resident Weighted Average Daily Attendance. Warwick’s percentage for 2018-2019 school year is 6.98% or $597,012.00, down from 7.08% in 2017-18.
The Board also approved a motion to vote for two members to serve on the BOCES Board of Cooperative Educational Services, Michael Bello from the Port Jervis Central School District and Eugenia Pavek from the Minisink Central School District.
Warwick ‘Points of Pride’ to be Sent to Residents
The Superintendent reported that when the next newsletter goes out to residents, it will include an insert that provides a synopsis of academic and extracurricular activities. He stated that this resulted from feedback provided by local realtors. It will also include Warwick Valley Points of Pride, which will highlight items such as the new solar project, 94.3% graduation rate, six years in a row voted best musical education, two green ribbon schools and two blue ribbon schools. He provided a sample for the Board to review.
Discussing the Warwick Valley Coalition, Board member Robert Howe stated that the high school didn’t meet due to spring break, but that the middle school was in the process of joining the coalition. He commented that in past years there were only seven or eight attendees and now it is regularly 15, including two Orange County Legislators, Barry Cheney and Paul Ruszkiewicz.
Howe also reported that the agricultural committee is thriving and that they are seeing quite a few students taking advantage of it. Superintendent Leach stated that he was going to meet with James Yap, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instructional Services, to see what more can be offered.
In new business, the Board approved a resolution to adopt the 2018-19 budget in the amount of $92,819,749 and the property tax report card. A public hearing will be held on Mon., May 7 with the vote scheduled for Tues., May 15.
The Board approved a resolution to accept $500 from Stewart Shops for their holiday match donation and a Special Olympics grant in the amount of $2,000.
The following amendments were approved on the 2017-18 academic calendar: Thurs., May 24 will now be a full day of school and there will be early dismissals on Fri., May 25 and Fri., Jun. 22. The changes reflect the number of snow days used by the District this winter.
High School to Have Four New Courses
Four new courses will be offered at the high school in the next academic year. They are Creative Construction and Craftmanship (3C), Freshman Seminar, Computer Advertising and Graphic Design, and AP Computer Science.
Four field trip requests were approved. The Concert Band members will travel to New York City to see “A Bronx Tale” on Wed., Apr. 25. The Environmental class will travel to Keystone Sanitary Landfill in Dunmore, PA on Tues., May 1, and the Floral Design class will visit the Conservatory Garden in New York City on Thurs., May 3. The Wind Ensemble will go to Agawam, MA on Fri., May 18 to participate in the Festivals of Music. As it turns out, Agawam is the birthplace of Board member Bob Howe who lived there until he was eight-years-old.
The Board accepted the Albert Wisner Library vote results and then having no old business or comments from residents, adjourned the meeting at 7:51 p.m.
The next meeting will be held on Mon., May 7 at 7 p.m. in the Dorothy C. Wilson Education Center, located at 225 West St., Warwick NY.