Washington Primary School's Shared Decision Making Committee is working hard this year. (Darin Reed photo.)

Huntington UFSD News and Notes

Washington Primary School's Shared Decision Making Committee is working hard this year. (Darin Reed photo.)

December 2, 2020

This year’s Washington Primary School Shared Decision Making Committee consists of Principal Michelle Richards, teachers Emily Meyers, Katie Kalkau, Linda Kohan, Miriam Engle, Vivian Joseph and Nicole Lennon and parents Leah Van Horn and Donna Alberico.

“We are hard at work brainstorming ideas that will foster stronger bonds between our school community and local community for our children” Dr. Richards said.

The group has spurred creation of a pair of committees. Washington’s Cultural Cooking Committee “will plan family cooking demonstrations once a month to be presented via Zoom,” Dr. Richards said.

The Reading Rainbow Committee “will solicit members of our school and local communities to read aloud books for our children to view at their leisure,” Dr. Richards said.

Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School PTA

The Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School’s PTA executive board is a dynamic group. It consists of Jennifer Tullo (president), Jon Harris (co-vice president), Noel Kate (co-vice president), Adrianna Echeverry-Herrera (treasurer), Devon Perotti (recording secretary), Colleen Perfetto (corresponding secretary) and PTA Council delegates Kimberley Steinberg and Kim Einemann.

Donations to Huntington UFSD

Huntington UFSD has received numerous generous donations in recent months. Among them was one by Peter Coppinger in the amount of $200 for various school supplies at Southdown Primary School.

Barry Dutchens made a pair of equipment donations valued at more than $10,000. He donated a long list of items earmarked for the Huntington High School robotics program and valued at $7,524. A second extensive group of items valued at $3,159 was donated to the high school science department.

Mr. & Mrs. Thomas Ernst donated two tenor trombones, an Olds and a Yamaha to the Huntington High School music department. The instruments have a combined value of $2,600.

Giaquinto Masonry donated $250 to the high school choral account and earmarked it for the purchase of facemasks emblazoned with the choir logo.

Retirement Contribution Reserve Fund Strengthened

Huntington School Board members have strengthened the district’s Retirement Contribution Reserve Fund, which held a balance of $6,849,094 at the beginning of the 2020/21 school year.

The reserve was created on May 7, 2012 and is used to pay for district expenses related to the New York State Employees Retirement System. The reserve has typically been funded by the transfer of end of year surplus monies from the district’s general fund.

The district’s reserve fund plan calls for annual use of the Retirement Contribution Reserve Fund in decreasing amounts so as not to create a budgetary shortfall.

A funding level equivalent to three years’ worth of ERS billings is desired. There is no statutory ceiling on the amount that can be funded. The serve is monitored by the assistant superintendent for finance and management services.

New Southdown Speech Teacher

Huntington School Board members approved a probationary appointment for speech teacher Danielle Lopez, who has been assigned to Southdown Primary School.

Ms. Lopez obtained an undergraduate degree at SUNY College at New Paltz in communication sciences and disorders and a master’s degree at Long Island University in speech language pathology.

Ms. Lopez previously worked as a leave replacement speech teacher at Jefferson and Washington primary schools. She has also been employed by the Roslyn, Glen Cove and Commack school districts as well as by Just Kids in Lindenhurst and New York Therapy Placement Services in Port Jefferson.

District officials reviewed 45 applications, pre-screened 40 candidates and held 15 interviews prior to recommending Ms. Lopez for appointment.

Food Service Equipment Grants

Huntington UFSD received several food service program equipment related grants for the 2020/21 school year. The grant program was administered by the State Education Department.

Among the grants were three for $8,964 each for Continental reach-in refrigerators at Flower Hill, Southdown and Washington primary schools; $8,770 for a reach-in freezer at Southdown Primary School; $5,974 for a reach-in refrigerator at Huntington High School.

HHS Leave Replacement Spanish Teacher

Clara Galeas is working as a full-year leave replacement Spanish teacher at Huntington High school. She obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Spanish at St. Joseph’s College.

Ms. Galeas completed her state certification student teaching requirements in Brentwood.

District officials reviewed 15 applications and interviewed all 15 candidates prior to recommending Ms. Galeas for appointment.