The Island Now

From the desk of Superintendent Elaine Kanas: Author Samalin talks parenting advice

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Posted: Monday, November 5, 2012 2:48 pm

It has been another busy week in the East Williston schools with many activities and learning opportunities.

East Williston/Roslyn

Community Coalition

I attended a presentation sponsored by the East Williston/Roslyn Community Coalition for Drug-Free Youth that featured well known author and parenting expert Nancy Samalin.  Samalin is the author of many popular books on child rearing.  Many of them helped guide me in raising my own children!  If you google ‘Nancy Samalin’ you will find additional references that you may find helpful. Some books she has written are as follows:  “Love and Anger: The Parental Dilemma,” “Loving Your Child Is Not Enough: Positive Discipline that Works” and “Loving Without Spoiling: And 100 Other Timeless Tips for Raising Terrific Kids.”

The Coalition is a volunteer not-for-profit organization made up of parents, school officials, religious leaders and other residents and community leaders in the East Williston and Roslyn school communities. Their website describes the Coalition’s objectives as “… educat[ing] our families as they face today’s many parenting challenges by means of parent education workshops, public service ads, community website and communications network. The Coalition strives to give parents access to the critical resources they need to address teenage drug and alcohol use.”  

For further information about the Coalition or to get involved you can go to their website at and/or contact district resident and Coalition board member Jamie Cutinella at . Their next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 27 at 10:30 a.m. at Wheatley.

Wheatley’s Day of Service

and Learning

This past Wednesday was my first opportunity to witness and participate in Wheatley’s Day of Service and Learning.  The Day of Service helps our students apply their learning to real life situations in the service of those in need.  The many activities our high school students participated in, alongside staff members, provided service to our own schools as well as the broader community.   For example, our older students served as assistants in the primary grade classrooms at North Side, helping with special projects and introducing foreign languages; led anti-bullying efforts at Willets Road; and served as buddies to the Life Skills students.  I had the pleasure of working alongside our students who were winterizing one of our school science gardens by hoeing, weeding and composting.  Student volunteer activities that reached beyond our schools and into the community included collecting, purchasing and distributing food to local shelters and food banks; assisting at Clarke Gardens; and supporting and assisting at the Grateful Paw Animal Shelter. Go to our website to see some fun photos of our students and the day’s events featured on the front page.

Board of Education Monthly Business Meeting - Oct. 22

At last week’s  Board of Education Monthly Business meeting, the PTO Coordinating Council and North Side’s, Willets Road’s and Wheatley’s PTOs recognized our five Board of Education members , Mark Kamberg, president, Robert Fallarino, vice president, Leonard Hirsch, David Keefe and Barbara Slone, in acknowledgement of New York State Board of Education Appreciation Week.  Jackie Fitzpatrick, Assistant Superintendent for Business, gave an informative presentation regarding the tax rate which can be found on our district website (District tab > School Board > Meetings > Board Presentations 12-13). There is also information provided in yhe Oct.19 weekly newsletter on this topic. (All of my weekly newsletters are archived on the district website at Superintendent’s Corner – District tab > About Our District > Superintendent’s Corner).  

Christopher Malone, director of Facilities, Operations and Transportation, shared all the new facility work that has been completed over the summer and early fall.  You can find photographs of these projects on our website on the Board Presentations 12-13 page as noted above.  Please note that at the Nov. 7 BOE Work Session there will be a discussion of a FiveYear Capital Facilities Plan.  The dstrict architect and his engineers are working on a study of our facilities to determine what should be addressed over the next five years to continue to maintain our physical structures.  Administrators and building personnel, as well as various community groups, are also providing input regarding recommended capital projects that support and enhance instructional and co-curricular program. 

The Five Year Capital Facilities Plan will support our District Strategic Planning Initiative.  Come on Nov. 7 to hear the discussion and contribute your ideas.  If you cannot make the meeting, your comments and suggestions regarding facilities can be emailed to me or to Jackie Fitzpatrick, assistant superintendent for Business, at .  They will also be shared with the BOE Capital Facilities Advisory Committee.

As always please call me at 333-3758 or email me at with any questions, suggestions, etc.  

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