18, 2002 (Part I)
& School Board Befuddled
The board of education and the superintendent
ponder the dismal ...
By Stewart S Lilker
The Freeport School Board gathered for another of their famous
illegal meetings on Tuesday night, July 16, 2002. While the
special or emergency meeting was called earlier in the day, it
seemed that the board members had not received the agenda items
for the half a million dollar roof repair at the Giblyn
Elementary School. Assistant Superintendent of Business, Kishore
Kuncham, mentioned some things regarding the legality of
appropriating the funds without bringing them before the public,
but it was impossible to hear most of what he said. No one on
the board questioned why the roof problems were not discovered
earlier. Of course, the public wasnít allowed to ask
A reliable source told FNYN that the district had no choice
but to fix the roof, as it had become dangerous. It was
explained that the way the roof was designed, it was impossible
to tell from the outside that water had penetrated underneath.
The residents of the district are going to have to come up with
an estimated $500,000 to pay for what the district is calling an
emergency contingent repair.
The Real Purpose of the Meeting
A few residents showed up for the meeting.
Among those in attendance were two former school board members,
the past PTA Council Pres. and the current PTA Council
Pres. FreeportNYNews tipped of the reporter from the
Leader, Jason Gers (top row, rt.), as the district didn't
notify them about the meeting.
The real purpose of the meeting was to discuss the dismal
performance of the districtís students on the recent state
assessments. Sunday Coward, who was elected president of the
board earlier in the month, continued to show her disdain for
the public by continuing to keep the muzzle on the residents,
disallowing any comment or questions from the taxpayers. None of
the members of the board protested her arbitrary decision.
When measured by student achievement, this board is clearly
the worst school board in the history of Nassau County. In the
recent fourth grade assessments, Roosevelt, a district, which
was recently taken over by the state, scored above Freeport.
Freeportís fourth grade English Language Arts scores
have sunk them smack into the bottom of the barrel.
Board VP, Psychologist Joe Cattano, continued his theme of
blaming the parents and the community for the poor performance
of the students.
Superintendent Eversley, who has been running the district
for the past year, seemed genuinely confused about the scores
and any solution. Before being hired by Freeport, Eversley was
let go by BOCES, leaving one of the lowest performing school
districts in Illinois to take that job.
The meeting carried on for two hours. Nothing constructive
was accomplished. All evening, not one
word was said by anybody about the districtís fourth graders
and what the districtís failures are doing to their young
As the meeting concluded and just after Board President
Coward made another unlawful motion to enter into executive session,
Board VP Cattano turned to Coward and said, "No wonder this
community will never go any place. People put a spin on your
words and interpret it for their own personal reasons."
Coward replied, "They sure do."
to Part II)
II -- Dance Ballerina Dance or
You Donít Have To Spin Their Words ē They Spin By Themselves
(FreeportNYNews is presenting the boardís and superintendentís
words as they said them. Some of their soliloquies have been
shortened, but all their words are their own.-- Ed.)
16, 2002 (4:45 pm)
School Bd. Meeting Tonight
Freeportís Superintendent and
Board have called an illegal board meeting for tonight to
discuss Freeportís state assessments, which have placed
Freeportís schools smack on the bottom of the schools in
This purported emergency meeting
was called sometime late yesterday and was not posted on the
district web site until almost eight oíclock last night.
At 4:38 p.m. this afternoon,
FreeportNYNews had not been advised by the district that an
emergency meeting was called for this evening. FNYN checked with
the Leader, the official newspaper of the district, and was
informed that they had not received notice of this meeting.
NYS law requires that the media
must be informed of emergency or special meetings. The NYS
Commissioner of Open Government, Mr. Robert Freeman said,
"If a meeting is scheduled less than a week an advance,
notice of the time and place must be given to the news
media..." Additionally, the courts have frowned on public
bodies calling so called "emergency or special"
meetings when there is no emergency.
Last year, even though the
Commissioner of Education had ruled consistently that he would
not become involved in issues regarding NYS Open Meetings Law,
he rolled back a decision by the Roosevelt Board of Ed. because
of short and improper meeting notice. The NYS courts have also
found that any action taken at an improperly convenience meeting
is illegal. In plain English, that means is it doesnít count.
Freeportís Superintendent, Dr.
Eric Eversley, and the Freeport Board have repeatedly
demonstrated that they consider themselves above the law. New
school board member, Carmen Pineyro, will be tested tonight to
see if she protests this illegal meeting.
The poor performance of the
Freeport Schools is not a surprise to the Superintendent or the
Board of Education. They have once again exhibited their
deviousness and lack of regard for the public by this
unannounced short noticed meeting of an important issue.
The meeting is scheduled to be held at 9:00 p.m. in the
administration building, located at 235 N. Ocean Avenue, in
Pineyro Takes Oath
by Stewart S Lilker
Supreme Court Justice, Ira Raab, made a special trip to Freeport
to give the oath of office to Carmen Pineyro, the first elected
Latino in the history of Freeport. Judge Raabís presence made
the already special event, even more special, as Judge Raab is
an example of the American spirit, whose quest to be elected to
the court spanned many years. Judge Raab said, "I'm glad to
participate in history by swearing in the first Latino member of
the Freeport School Board. Now, the board truly represents the
make up of the community."
Ms. Pineyro and her many
supporters were all smiles as she took the oath. A few minutes
later her brother and campaign manager, Danny
Pineyro, told FreeportNYNews, "Youíll see, things will be
July 2, 2002 (04:20 p.m.)
Wastes No Time
Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Eric Eversley, failed
to post last nightís
school board meeting on the districtís web site.
While both the board and Eversley have repeatedly
said they want the web site to be the first line of
communication with the residents of the district,
this is not the first time Eversley has failed to
post an emergency meeting. In a continuing effort to
keep the public uninformed and off balance, Eversley
has stopped dating the emergency postings.
Yesterday, a source
told FreeportNYNews that the purpose of the
emergency meeting was to discuss the appointment of
an interim superintendent of curriculum for the
retiring Dr. Tony Ciaglia. The word on the street is
that the board is going to hire that replacement at
tonightís board meeting. Ciagliaís last day in
the district will be July 30th.
At the last board
meeting, Superintendent Eversley saw no problem with
allowing the district 48 hours to notify a parent
that their child didnít show up for school.
Yesterday afternoon, the district was wasting no
time painting over Ciagliaís parking space with
the as yet un-hired replacementís name. LILKER