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Freeport School News
April 2002

April 12, 2002


by Stewart S Lilker

Under construction, the Freeport School Districtís New Visions public school looms three tall stories high in neighborhood backyards, as it reaches towards the heavens, casting a dark shadow over all the homes surrounding it. The NYS Education Department approved the districtís plans and gave the district permission to build the school in this predominantly Latino residential neighborhood, even though the land was severely undersized. Neither the Freeport Board of Education, the State Education Department or the Village of Freeport thought to contact the residents in the neighborhood for their input.

The school district could have bought the previously decommissioned pubic school on Cleveland Avenue at a bargain basement price and renovated it, saving the neighborhood and saving the district millions of dollars in construction costs. Unfortunately, the school board would not admit that they knew the Cleveland Avenue school was for sale. The Village had other plans for both the school and the athletic field north of the school. Board members met with village officials, with the result that the school board  and the Glackenites sold the neighborhood residents and the school community down the river.

The districtís rendition of the school, shown here, shows a totally unrealistic picture of the school and its relationship to the surrounding neighborhood. A look at the construction photos, both taken from the sidewalk, show that the depiction is not even close to the construction photos. The left wing of the building seems to be missing.

A simple traffic study taken at another Freeport school, shows that the traffic on the street will be devastating to those surrounding the new school, being dangerous, as well as destroying the character of the neighborhood.

One resident in the vicinity of the new school spoke to FNYN under the condition of anonymity, afraid of the well-known retribution of the Village. He said, "I canít believe what I am seeing. Nobody contacted me to let me know what they were doing. This monster in my backyard is going to ruin my life. You donít see them building anything like this in their backyards. They should be ashamed of themselves, but they never are. They donít think we are human beings."



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