Opinion 1999 to 2001
Letters To The Editor
Wait Till Itís Too Late
Leader Speaks Out
Year Village Resident Asks
Has Anybody Seen Our Cat? July
At The Real Statistics
Department Not Doing Enough March
Gestapo Tactics Deplored
February 24, 2001
Need A Change
February 24, 2001
Breed ē A Resident PO Speaks Out
February 2, 2001
March 21, 2000
Cuts March 26, 2000
|We Must Get
Our Schools Going Again March 24,
Speaks Out ē Surprised ?!
March 20, 2000
Needs Bone Marrow Transplant ē March
| A Student Speaks
February 20, 2000
|School Board Coverage
October 30, 1999
ē A candidate for sainthood
January 4, 2002
(Hand delivered early in December
and addressed to Mayor Glacken, Freeport's
mayor decided to ignore yet another resident. Mr. Goldstein told FNYN,
"Even had he disagreed, some acknowledgment would have been in
order. I've never had a politician ignore one of my letters
Dear Mayor Glacken:
I am a New York City schoolteacher. In addition, I teach at Queens
College and often do extra work on weekends. I have a daughter who goes
to kindergarten at Columbus Avenue School, with whom I try to spend as
much time as possible. Iím sure youíll understand when I tell you
that Iím busier than Iíd like to be.
Last week, I received a nasty, threatening note from Vilma Lancaster
(Village Treasurer -ed.) informing me of the demeaning treatment
I would receive if my taxes were not paid within one week. The Village
would publish my name in a local paper, charge me fees and put a lien on
my home. I was particularly upset by this because I always pay my
mortgage on time.
I spent hours last week trying to contact my mortgage holder,
Municipal Credit Union (MCU). I tried e-mailing, phoning, waiting 30
minutes at a time on hold, but could not get through. I was very upset.
By yesterday, it was interfering with my work, and I was making calls
when I should have been with my students.
Yesterday, the school switchboard operator found me a number that
connected me to a live person at MCU. Imagine my surprise when he told
me the offices of MCU Real Property were at Ground Zero and that every
town in the State of NY, except Freeport, had granted extensions and
waived late fees.
I distinctly remember Governor Pataki requesting municipalities to
comply with such requests and Mr. Hall from the Credit Union told me his
company had filled out many forms for that very purpose.
I saw and tried to console students wondering whether they had
families to go home to on September 11th. The horror of that day lives
with us all. The disgraceful and grotesque insensitivity of the Village
Government in response to this disaster boggles the mind. The more I
think about it, the more disgusted I get. Thatís why Iím up an hour
early this morning writing you.
Can you imagine elderly Freeport residents worrying about having
their names falsely published as delinquent homeowners? In place of our
names, why doesnít Ms. Lancaster publish a letter of apology to those
to whom she sent this letter? And why doesnít she send a hard copy to
everyone who received a letter like mine? And why donít you
immediately put a halt to this nasty, draconian, and unusual practice of
threatening Freeportís residents with public humiliation for slightly
late tax payments? They put away the stocks years ago, you know.
Freeport makes Ebenezer Scrooge look like a candidate for sainthood.
|They Are All Our Children
January 4, 2002
My heart is in despair as I think about the condition of the school
district and how it affects my children. I attended a board meeting
where everyone seemed to have his or her own agenda. But I ask, whose
agenda do our children fall under?
The superintendent states that he has the best interest of our
children at heart. The board meeting suggested otherwise. We have people
that sit on the board, making decisions regarding our children, but send
their own children to private school.
Oh yes, let's not forget about the state! They pretend not to know
what is going on in our school district, but they would have to be deaf
and blind in order to miss it. The Commissioner of Education as well as
the Regents Board sits by while our children suffer.
Every politician I talk to politely explains how they can't help me
and maybe I should try writing or calling someone else. I have emailed,
faxed, mailed and called every politician I could think of, from the
President of the United States, down to our assembly representative.
Everyone has a suggestion or a new bill, but none of the people who are
supposed to watch over and protect us have a definite solution.
As a parent whom do I turn too? I get so frustrated I could scream,
but I think of my babies, take a deep breath and start my writing
campaign all over again. I think someone will listen eventually they
will hear my pleas and cries for help.
Help us help our children!
Wait Till Itís Too Late
Leader Speaks Out
While our neighborhood is being taken over by drug dealers, drug users and
gangs, Mayor Glacken is planning the "Taj Mahal" of giant
water slides. He bonded hundreds of thousands for parking lots and attempted
to demolish our community swimming pools. This "Giant Water
Slide" will probably bring 200 to 500 more people into the Freeport
Recreational Center swimming area. How do you feel about sharing your pool
time, pool space and parking space at the Recreational center with 200 to
500 more people? Most of them will probably be from outside of Freeport.
This will require thousands of your tax dollars to build, thousands of
your tax dollars to staff, thousands of your dollars to maintain and
thousands of your tax dollars for policing. How much of a tax increase is
it going to cost to build this Trojan Horse?
We need drug busting, gang busting police
services, not the Taj Mahal of water slides. We need well staffed programs
and better policing of our neighborhoods. Where are the drug dealers and
gangs going to go after they overrun the neglected neighborhoods in
Northeast Freeport? They are going to come to your neighborhood and get
your children. Don't wait until it's too late! Help protect and improve
our neighborhood and it will help and protect yours.
Come to the next village Trustee Meeting,
Monday, July 23, 2001, at 7:30 p.m. Tell the Mayor and the Trustees to
"clean up and clean out" drug dealers and gangs in northeast
Freeport. Tell the Mayor and the Trustees to stop herding drug
dealers and gangs into northeast Freeport and letting them flourish.
Bernard Smith (pictured)
President - Northeast Civic Association
Year Village Resident Asks
Has Anybody Seen Our Cat?
July 18, 2001
Recently, we received a phone
message on our answering machine
from the Village of Freeport, telling us that we were in violation of an
ordinance. I did not hear it myself, but upon my return, my fiancťe
informed me of its content. It was from the Code Enforcement Department
and the person politely informed us that we had to remove the some 8Ĺ x
11 inch posters we put up on several already staple ridden utility poles
in our neighborhood. The posters were a request for information that we
hoped would enlighten us as to the whereabouts of our beloved cat, that
had been missing for four days. I applaud you for your feeble efforts to
make Freeport a safer and better place to live!
What about the ordinances, if there are
any, that govern the loud music that emanates from the Woodcleft Avenue
drunk tank establishments every weekend? What about ordinances that
prohibit the use of motor vehicles with loud mufflers or no mufflers at
all? The ordinance that prohibits constantly barking dogs no matter what
the hour? An ordinance that requires the use of rakes instead of noise
polluting lawn and leaf blowers that permeate the air with dust, pollen,
chemical fertilizers and pesticides, and microscopic particles of dried up
How about the ordinances that are supposed
to keep dangerous feral dogs from roaming our streets and yards? Or
"open-sea" worthy horns that blast private citizens from there
living rooms along our waterfront? Double parked school buses picking up
charter fishermen on Guy Lombardo Avenue? The constant disregard of stop
signs that are occasionally, at best, monitored by police that openly park
their marked cars at the intersections in question? Kids that walk down
the middle of a side street and give you the high sign if you toot your
horn to warn them of your approach?
And then there are the over-occupancy
ordinances? A half dozen vehicles parked overnight in front of a single
family house should tell you something, no? Forget it! From what Iíve
been told, an inspector canít enter the house in question unless itís
during or after the house is on fire!
I could continue this list until the cows
come home. (Ironically thereís an ordinance that prohibits the keeping
of cows in Freeport) However, I am sure that the longer the list gets, the
less the chances of it being displayed to the public. Regardless, someone
has the unmitigated and heartless gall to prevent a family from trying to
recover its cherished lost pet!
SEE YOU IN FLORIDA!!!
Jeff Keene (43 year village resident)
The Village Responds
Sent: Wednesday, July 18, 2001 11:52 AM
Subject: cat poster
Your e-mail has been forwarded to me. I on
behalf of the Village Building Department I apologize for the call that
you received from this office in regards to above subject.
Obviously the inspector who made the call
did not use discretion. Please understand that signs on poles are a
violation ( usually for garage sales) for which we receive many
complaints, but in no case would I authorize the inspector to ask that a
missing animal poster be removed unless deteriorated. If you wish put
the posters back up and keep me informed as to your progress. I do hope
you are successful in finding your cat.
There are ordinances in place for noise.
Call the police department when the situation arises.
As far as over/occupancy that is my
department. We have been quite successful in combating illegal housing.
I do know we have a long way to go. If you have any leads on illegal
housing you can call our anonymous hotline or contact me. All
information will remain confidential.
The hotline number is 377- 2230.
If you have any other question please feel
free to call.
(Mr. Madigan's response is unedited -
At The Real Statistics
April 23, 2001
The Freeport School District and certain members of the Board of Education
are misrepresenting the facts. It must stop! As residents, as well as
parents, we deserve to hear the truth. For months the district has been
boasting that 63% of the 1999/2000 graduating class received Regents
diplomas. At the March 28, 2001 Board of Education meeting, the district
report card was presented. Once again, the administration failed to tell
the audience that the percentage was calculated using the number of
students that did graduate, rather than the number that should have
Letís look at the whole picture.
Six-hundred and thirty children were ninth graders in 1996/1997. They were
the graduating class of 1999/2000. By tenth grade, 533 remained. By the
eleventh grade 504 and by twelfth grade 418 were left. Of those 418
students, only 327 graduated, with only 206 receiving a Regents diploma.
What happened to the other 303 children that began in ninth grade?
Remember, in 96/97, six-hundred and thirty children began their high
school career in Freeport. Why did the district conveniently forget about
A look at the real statistics reveals the
numbers that the district doesnít want to talk about. The senior class
of 1999/2000 began the year with 418 students. The math reveals a dismal
picture. Based on the more realistic calculation of seniors beginning the
year and those graduating with Regents diplomas, the senior class Regents
diploma rate is 49%. Based on the graduating rate of the cohorts (those
that began in 9th grade) the regents diploma rate is a dismal 33%.
In the April 5th edition of the Leader,
the official newspaper of both the school district and the village, the
whole picture was not reported. The Leader reported that at recent Chamber
of Commerce luncheon, Dante Grover, former School Board President said,
"Freeport School taxes have had no increase in five years." The
truth is that in the last five years, not including this year, school
taxes have increased every year except for two. Going back seven years,
the tax increases were nothing short of phenomenal. This year, the
district is presenting three budget scenarios, with tax increases ranging
from 9.92% to 12%.
Isnít it time to stop shopping around to
find a school district whose statistics are worse than ours? At the same
Chamber Of Commerce luncheon, Grover claimed that the high school showed a
6% increase in the drop out rate. This is frightening and totally
unacceptable. School districts have known for years of the new Regents
requirements. Itís time the district stopped wasting time finding
excuses and began finding answers, the right answers. Our children need to
stay in school, graduate and have a future. The Leader, the District, and
the residents should be looking at the whole picture.
Freeport, NY 11520
Ms. Cieslik is the former Co-president
of the Freeport H.S. PTA -- ed.
Department Not Doing Enough
March 16, 2001
I believe in the American right of free speech. Everybody is entitled to
their opinion, no matter how silly or inflammatory. I believe that a
responsible person reporting news of any kind ought to check the facts
before printing their story. I feel that printing a letter from someone
who is making strong allegations, without checking "facts" is
sophomoric and irresponsible. I am referring to your recent article about
the building department and a letter written by someone named Patrick Hoey.
Mr. Hoey wrote that the person came on a
Sunday, out of the blue, flashed an ID card and then barged right into the
house. The Building Department does not work on Sundays unless they are
specifically called out by the Police Department or sometimes the Fire
Department. The inspector will not come in unless the officers are inside
the premises, where they are authorized to show the Inspector any
violations that are observed.
This person is either outright lying or
simply neglecting that the police or fire department were already there
and observed violations, which necessitated the building department's
presence. Maybe you should check these agency's records. You may be
Mr. Hoey said the inspector flashed an ID
card. Check the facts. The Building Dept. uses badges, not ID cards.
Mr. Lilker, did you ask to hear the tapes
of the alleged incident? No? You mean the resident didn't audiotape the
incident? Well, the Building Department did. Why don't you ask to hear
them? You won't, though, because the tapes will prove that whoever wrote
that sham letter is a liar. The same thing goes for alleged photos of
children in their jammies. Inflammatory propaganda, which is easily
disproved by the Building Department's photos.
The author of that ridiculous letter, in
his silly summation, called upon the federal government to review the
Building Department. Well, I call on the Feds to impose severe fines on
all home/apartment owners who blatantly disregard building codes and who
prey upon immigrants, illegal or not, and have them living in dangerous,
overcrowded, deplorable and illegal conditions. These are the bad guys,
not the Building Department.
I think you would find, that if you
bothered to let the Building Department have their say, that they would
prove that any contact they had with a property owner named Hoey, or any
property owner for that matter, was strictly within legal guidelines. You
would find that tenants gave the inspectors permission to inspect. The
tapes prove this. You would find there are statements admitting illegal
rental payments. You would also find that there is evidence supporting the
Building Inspectors charges, such as toilet paper in every room, separate
refrigerators and hot plates in every room. These are all indicative of
illegal and unsafe rentals. Tickets are not "thrown out for frivolous
reasons"... they are plead down.
I am a lifelong Freeport resident. I am
Hispanic and I vote. I say the Building Department isn't doing enough!
What's it going to take for you to see
that the Building Department is doing what is necessary? The death of an
immigrant in a dangerous illegal apartment?
Please don't take this letter as a
personal attack upon you. I simply believe in checking facts before you
click that "send" button. Otherwise, have a great day, and
thanks for the highly entertaining FreeportNYNews.com.
Freeport, NY 11520
Gestapo Tactics Deplored
February 24, 2001
My wife and I, property owners in
Freeport, wish to thank you for your role in the recent meetings
concerning the villageís attitude toward Spanish residents of the
community. We offer you any material assistance you may require in
rallying community support for your efforts, including a vast network of
resident families and friends.
Recently, relatives of my wifeís family
had a frightening experience with the Freeport housing inspectors. Our
property in Freeport had all the required permits, which makes this
incident all the more troubling.
This past autumn, late on a Sunday evening
(the Lordís Day in this Christian household), with their children about
to climb into bed, someone showed up at the door, claiming to be
investigating a gas leak. The person quickly flashed an identification
card and without authorization from the property owner, or permission from
the tenants, entered the home. The inspector then took out a camera and
began taking photographs. Some of these photos were of children in their
pajamas. My wifeís relatives, terrified, stood speechless as the
inspector opened doors and roamed around the house at will. One hour
later, the inspector departed, leaving behind a shaken and upset
collection of legally residing tenants. Shortly thereafter, we were
assessed $17,000 in fines, many of which were ultimately deemed frivolous
and thrown out of court. To conclude the matter, we paid a $500 fine ó
leaving that much less available to improve the property.
We deplore the Nazi-like Gestapo tactics
of the Village of Freeport Housing Department. We deplore the unauthorized
invasion of homes on the day of the Christian Sabbath and at all hours of
the day or night. We deplore the Villageís policy of taking unauthorized
photographs of children in their beds and the disruption of the lives of
peaceful residents. We call upon the Federal Government to solicit and
review the hundreds of complaints about the tactics and methods of this
out of control public agency.
Patrick and Silvia Hoey
Need A Change
February 24, 2001
There are major academic performance
problems in the Freeport school district. These problems affect 7000
children. The news is not good. I have recently reviewed the results of
the Freeport Summer School, the results of which can be found in a report
called Freeport Summer High School 2000. The results are a disgrace. In
the Math A Regents, eighty eight students took the exam and eight passed
the regents. In Sequential Math 3, thirty seven took the exam and ten
passed. The US History & Government regents showed one hundred and
eighteen taking the exam, with a disheartening sixteen passing.
The Regents Competency Test (RCT) where
the requirements are less stringent than those of the Regents were also
disappointing, with the highest passing percentage at fifty seven percent.
Moving past the Regents Exams and RCTs, the results were even more
disappointing for the less taxing tests. In English 11, eighty nine
students took the course and only thirty passed. In Math Level 8, seventy
one took the course and only eighteen passed. This is a disgrace. The
students that need help the most are not getting it and the result is
obvious -- too many are failing. The Board of Education is letting these
students and their families down.
In the grade schools, I found the results
to be even more disturbing. In 4th Grade Math, out of a total of fifty
three school districts in Nassau County, the Freeport School District has
the lowest "mean score" of all districts. No district is lower.
And in the Jr. High School, the 8th Grade Math Scores show that only one
district that has a lower "mean score" than Freeport, putting
Freeport right next to the bottom in that category.
We need a change on our Board of
Education. There are two seats coming up for election, those of incumbents
Albert Renken and Dante Grover. We need to elect two new people who will
put our children first. Board members who will tell us all the truth,
whether the news is good or bad. If you're not registered to vote, the
last day to do so is May 2nd, but don't wait until the last minute.
Finally, remember to vote on May 15th.
Breed ē A Resident Police Officer Speaks Out
February 12, 2000
Mr. Lilker, regarding your article, "Mayor Glacken Can Run But He
Can't Hide," in which you mention that there are two Spanish-speaking
officers in the department, for your information, the Freeport Police Dept
has 6 officers I know are fluent in Spanish. Also, there are at least 4
(maybe many more) who speak well enough to get by in a crisis situation.
Although I enjoy reading your column and
find it hysterical at times, I feel the need to correct you this time.
Please get your facts straight before criticizing those who gladly would
put their lives on the line to protect your family and yes -- even you.
Don't forget, if you're in trouble and want the Freeport Police to
respond, dial 911. If you want the county to respond, dial 573-7000 and
hope for the best.
After discussing your bias-reporting and
the contents of your propaganda column with other Freeport residents, as
well as with Freeport Police Officers, we have all come to the conclusion
that you should definitely run for Mayor. We think that because you know
everything and have all the answers, that you would surely win by a
landslide and clean up all the problems that Freeport faces for the
present, as well as the future.
I will continue reading your column, as I
find it more entertaining than the comics. I also wish you the best of
luck in whatever you do and hope that one day you are compelled to sell
your tackle store and move to a different municipality, somewhere where
the police and the Mayor really do suck.
Freeport NY, February 2, 2001
(At the December budget workshop, Chief Woodward stated there were
"five bilingual police officers" on the force. He also said,
"We have made job offers to those who were bilingual. One resigned in
the academy, the others did not pass through civil service
certification." The editor thanks Mr. Germanakos for pointing out our
typographical error. - ed.)
To the Editor:
On April 27, 2000 the legislature, caught
between a lawsuit and the threat of Nassauís bond rating being
downgraded to junk, supported a consent decree to change the existing
assessment system and reassess all residential properties at fair market
value by January 1, 2003. After sixty-two years of resisting changes to
Nassauís antiquated property assessment system, the County Legislature
moved forward with a bipartisan vote of 14 to 4. The nine Democrats and
five Republicans finally agreed to start down the road to reassessesment,
proving in some cases how courageous they can be. For some Democrats, this
vote buys with it instant political headaches, as some districts will see
tax increases. For the Republicans who broke ranks, it could mean big
trouble come next election from anti-assessment legislative candidates
On the day of this historic vote all sides
had their say. Fearful homeowners against re-assessment let their feelings
be known, claiming it was unfair to reassess and their taxes could go up
20% to 300%. Proponent homeowners exhibited a long anticipated breath of
tax relief. Nassau must now implement and have in place a new residential
assessment system based on full market value and reassess all residential
property by January 1, 2003. Charles OíShea, Chairman of the Board of
Assessors for Nassau County, went on record stating that "Senior
Citizen and Star Program exemption entitlements will not be
effected." Mr. OíShea further said, "The earliest reassessment
would have an effect on tax bills would be January 2004."
Battle lines are forming. Republicans are
being blamed for Nassauís debt and junk bond status, while Democrats are
being blamed for Nassauís passage of reassessment. Opponents and
proponents are banding together. Reassessment will be a very difficult
task. Some homeowners will pay less, some will not change and some, who
have not paid there fair share for years, will pay more. With Nassau
legislative district elections coming up in November 2001, we are going to
be subjected to all kinds of vicious character attacks, mudslinging and
The Nassau County Legislature has finally
moved to fix a scandalous assessment system scheme that has demanded the
poorest homeowner subsidize the richest. This will bring fairness to a
system that has forced thousands of home owners to pay billions of dollars
too much. The fourteen legislators, who voted for a change, should be
congratulated and commended for taking a courageous giant step forward.
Robert W. Zilinsky
Baldwin NY, March 31, 2000
To the Editor.
Since taking office in January, my fellow
legislative colleagues and I have been forced to take a hard look at the
Countyís fiscal situation and make some tough decisions. While we favor
cuts over taxes, the Legislature has always looked to make cuts that would
have as little impact on the community as possible.
Over the past few months, concerned voters
have flooded my office with their opposition to the steep cuts in County
bus service initiated by County Executive Tom Gulotta. The hardship this
will cause to our community is truly devastating. These cuts will slash an
already under funded but vital service to the South Shore. Residents,
including those with disabilities, depend on public bus service to get to
work each day. For many there is no other alternative available.
The State Assembly has allocated 15
Million dollars to Nassau County to help restore some money to MTA and
social service agencies. But that money hinges on the passage of a fiscal
oversight board for the County The Assembly has already signed off on an
oversight board, and I am urging our State Senators to follow suit.
On March 28. the M TA will be holding
hearings at 4 p.m. at the Nassau County Medical Center to discuss the
cuts. I encourage anyone to come down and help me voice opposition to the
cuts in service. In addition, I urge you to write to the County Executive
in support of restoring these cuts
My fellow legislators and I are working
hard toward solutions that do not place the needs of our residents in
jeopardy because of the poor budgetary practices and poor fiscal
management of the past. With a little perseverance and your support we
will find a solution.
Joseph K. Scannell
Legislator, 5th District
Mineola NY, March 26, 2000
To the Editor:
I'm a new resident here in Freeport. I
must admit am somewhat stunned at this major defeat of the school bond
referendum. The vote wasn't even close. I don't know all the specifics of
the pros and cons, but I would like to suggest that Stewart Lilker reserve
an auditorium at one of our schools on a Saturday real soon for a meeting
of as many residents as want to attend. I think we all would like to talk
about this openly and hear more. The meeting is certainly proper and there
should be no problem in getting use of a school auditorium. If the Board
of Education were to give Mr. Lilker a problem, I would be willing to pay
$2-$3 for my share to help rent a hall for such a meeting. I'm sure
300-400 people would come. That would certainly cover any rental. Mr.
Lilker could then put the meeting announcement on this web site and an ad
notice in the Leader.
Freeport NY, March 24, 2000
To the Editor:
It comes as no surprise to me that the
Freeport School Districtís 39.8 million dollar Bond was rejected by the
community. Even though I am the Freeport High School PTA Co-President,
Site-Based Team member, Sports Booster Treasurer and the High School
parent representative for the 1.5 million dollar Magnet Schools Assistance
Innovative Program Grant, I am writing this letter today as a very
concerned Freeport parent. I am worried about what the District will do
now! On March 17, 2000 at 10:30 a.m., I was one of six people who attended
an Emergency Board of Education meeting, a meeting that was supposed to be
a matter of "real estate." It wasnít. It was a
"bond" meeting. The atmosphere was sullen. The Board of
Education and the Administration said "we got a clear message, we
will do whatever it takes." I thought this was promising, until I
heard "what can we cut from the bond, we need it all, but we can cut
5 million dollars by taking out HEALTH AND SAFETY ISSUES." I find it
disheartening that the Administration and the Board "still donít
get it ." On March 15, 2000, the community spoke. NO! We will not
support your plan. WHY! Thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours of time
spent by the board on propaganda to support their bond. I am disappointed
that the District did not spend the equivalent time and money to educate
its children and build a relationship with its community. Sure its about
money, but more than that its about arrogance, lack of trust and a
community that isnít going to listen, because they havenít been heard
for years. Instead, the Board will cut 5 million dollars by deleting
fixing and/or replacing boilers, fire and smoke detection systems (health
and safety issues). Issues that shouldnít exist. My plea to the Board is
... STOP! Read your report card ... LOOK! At the disservice you have been
doing to the children ... LISTEN! To the cries from the community, the
parents and most of all the children. The School District is wasting tax
payers dollars with its flawed plan on the pretense that it will benefit
the education of our children. You canít build without a solid
foundation. Shame on them!
Freeport NY, March 20, 2000
From me and my family, we are forever grateful to you and the Freeport
community for your publishing the Bone Marrow Transplant information
into your newspaper regarding our little loved one, Colin O'Connell.
Thank you and God Bless you.
March 5, 2000
From: Name Withheld@aol.com
Date: Sun, 20 Feb 2000
Subject: lottie talyor northover
I am a student at Freeport High School.
Since interim Principal, Dr. Northover, has entered the doors of the High
School I, the teachers, students and hall guards dread entering that
building day after day. This is my senior year and also the worst school
year of my life. Everyone is fed up with Dr. Northover. The way she goes
about things, her threats, disrespect and how she treats people is
pathetic. She has called the staff "hoodlums" and the students
"animals" and recently has been cursed out right in front of my
There was an incident that occurred Monday, Feb.14, Valentines day. My
friend was involved in a verbal and physical altercation by the pond.
After the altercation was broken up, the students were dragged into the
office. There, my friend full of mud from head to toe, broken nails,
scratched up bloody face and all was sitting in the office in tears when Dr. Northover
entered the room. She got right in her face asked, "What is going on
here?" in her stern and harsh voice, as if she couldnít tell there
was a fight. My friend repeatedly said, "Please, get out of my face.
Please, someone get her out of my face!" The dean, hall guards and
teachers in the room asked Dr. Northover to leave the room until my friend
calmed down. Dr. Northover refused. She continued to question and hover
over my friend. My friend then glanced my way and asked, "Why is she
still in my face?" With that, Northover walked between us. My friend
said "excuse me" and got up, walked around Dr. Northover and
said quietly to me "I canít believe this is happening."
Northover then said, "Sit down now!"
My friend, at that point, had it and said,
"No, I donít see my mother in this room and you didnít give birth
to me". Dr. Northover then said, "your out of here," as if
my friend meant nothing to her. My friend asked, "Youíre suspending
me?" Dr. Northover said, " No you expelled, sit down and shut
up." Then my friend lost her temper saying, "F--k you, I hated
this school every since you walked through the doors!
When her mother came to pick her up Dr.
Northover said, "The day this child walks through the doors of my
school is the day I hand her over my keys and let her be the principal.
The next day teachers, hall guards and students who donít even know my
friend approached me and asked how she was. There was a line of people
waiting to shake her hand for standing up to Dr. Northover. I was shocked.
I couldnít believe the teachers and hall guards who approached me. On
Friday Northover went on the loud speaker and to the entire school she
told us how you have to give respect to gain respect! I think she should
take her own advice!
Name withheld (ed)
October 30, 1999
To the Editor:
NEWSDAY is to be commended for conscientiously writing about the
opposition to the Freeport Board of Educationís hiring of Lottie
Taylor-Northover as its High School principal. I would like to further clarify
the coverage of the Board meeting by your reporter, Victor Ramos on June 25,
In listening to the various speakers one was struck by the spontaneous
in-gathering of a true "Rainbow Coalition." They included retired and
active teachers, parents, interested community members from all backgrounds as
well as High School students. The charges ranged from inappropriate use of funds
while involved with the Roosevelt School District to unprofessional and
uncommunicative dealings with teachers and students. Others criticized that the
hiring was done illegally without a search committee, background check or
consideration of the harm such a divisive presence could have on Freeport.
With the overwhelming opposition, the School Board led by Dante Grover, had
many choices. Any member might have issued a demur, called for a tabling of the
appointment or even voted "no." None of that occurred. The Boardís
tin ear prompted an honor student, who had been rudely cut off during a meeting
with Taylor to express her willingness to travel 70 miles from her college to
vote in the next School Board Election.
The Boardís attitude is disturbing when we think about the consequences for
Freeport. How many teachers will leave? How many might shy away from applying to
work in the High School? How many parents will hesitate to send their children
given the fractiousness? Freeport canít afford a School Board that as one
parent said "wants to experiment with our children."
HERBERT H. JURIST
Freeport NY, June 29, 1999
(Mr. Jurist, a Freeport resident, is a retired NYC school teacher who has
worked with Dr. Taylor/Northover)
This letter was recently received by FreeportNYNews. Newsday did not print
it and it is printed here for its value to the community.