02/15/17 8:00am
BEVERLEA WALZ PHOTO Academic Administrator Jennifer Rylott greeting students filing into school.

BEVERLEA WALZ PHOTO Academic Administrator Jennifer Rylott greeting students filing into school.

The shootings at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut that took the lives of 20 children and six adults on December 14, 2012 shook the nation.

Other gun-realted horrors have been revisited on campuses and other sites since then. One affect of the shootings has been the need to re-examine and shore up security measures. (more…)

05/12/16 12:00pm
JULIE LANE PHOTO Board of Education members Elizabeth Melichar (left) and Linda Eklund listened to concerns a parent has about nepotism in hiring and the purported reasons some parents opt to send their children to off-Island schools.

JULIE LANE PHOTO Board of Education members Elizabeth Melichar (left) and Linda Eklund listened to concerns a parent has about nepotism in hiring and the purported reasons some parents opt to send their children to off-Island schools.

Mary Ellen Adipietro, whose son Liam attends Shelter Island School, addressed Monday night’s Board of Education (BOE)  budget meeting, claiming  nepotism in hiring and gossip by staff members. (more…)

07/12/13 11:28am

JULIE LANE PHOTO | A new water tank is being readied for installation at Shelter Island School. Work is expected to be completed within two or three weeks, according to Superintendent Michael Hynes.

The Shelter Island Board of Education adopted policies at its July 10 meeting related to issues of behavior, dress and language both in the school building, on school property and on buses or at school-related extra-curricular activities. The new standards also prohibit bullying, discrimination, harassment or intimidation.

The full policies are posted on the school’s website and are called the Code of Conduct on School Property; the Dignity for All Students Act; and Civility, Citizenship and Character Education/Interpersonal Violence Prevention Education.

While there hadn’t been first readings on the policies as is generally the rule, all are routine and were reviewed prior to putting them up for a vote, according to Superintendent Michael Hynes. All had to be in place prior to the start of the school term in September and could be amended in the future if any board member wanted to raise that issue, he said.

Work is under way on new windows and a water tank for the building and inside with plans already being implemented for use of space, Dr. Hynes said. The windows should be completed by mid-August. They were part of the project slated for last summer, but time ran out and rather than disrupt school operations, the decision was made to hold off on the installation until this summer.

The water tank installation has required turning off water in the building right now and it is expected to be completed within two or three weeks, depending on weather, Dr. Hynes said.

Inside, the space previously used for the library has been emptied and is being converted for use as an administrative suite. The library is being moved elsewhere in the building and the first floor space will also accommodate the business office and a separate board room for meetings.

Work is also under way to convert rooms to create two academic suites — one devoted to math, science and technology and the other to the humanities. The administrative suite is expected to be functional within a week or two, Dr. Hynes said. He had suggested moving it to the old library space as a security measure since most visitors to the building are bound for that office and now won’t have to walk throughout the rest of the building to reach him.

Dr. Hynes also told the board the school needs a “booster club” and agreed to work with board members Tom Graffagnino and Mark Kanarvogel to start one. Board member Linda Eklund pointed out that several years ago, when the district’s budget failed to pass, a booster club was able to raise money to support sports activities that otherwise would have been cancelled.

In a cost-saving measure, the board agreed not to join the Nassau-Suffolk School Boards Association at a cost of $2,525. Shelter Island has bypassed the membership for the past couple of years. Board member Elizabeth Melichar said since money wouldn’t be spent on various out-of-town conferences and events in the next year, it might be beneficial to join the organization to attend more local forums. But others said they could still attend those forums at an increased price, but still not as expensive as it would cost for dues.

The board approved the following appointments:
• Walter Brigham III to receive extra compensation at his daily rate for providing computer support and supervision during the summer months;
• Deborah Vecchio to serve as board clerk at the rate of $30 an hour as necessary in the event Jacqueline Dunning is absent;
• Susan Higgins to serve as a substitute custodian at the rate of $15 per hour as needed;
• Jennifer Gulluscio for summer school registration, retroactive to June 28 and 29 and
* Lindsay Rando as summer school special education aide for 24 hours, retroactive to July 1 and continuing through July 26.

09/03/12 9:00am

The Shelter Island Board of Education got an update on the work being tackled by newly appointed academic administrator Jennifer Rylott Monday night and agreed that the outline she presented should be expanded and posted to the district’s website. The aim would be to give parents links to resources that would be useful to them in coordinating their children’s academic needs.

At the same time, board member Linda Eklund clarified that her question at the July board meeting about the new role to which the board had appointed Ms. Rylott this summer had been intended to make it clear that Superintendent Michael Hynes is still the district’s academic leader.

Ms. Rylott formerly was a teacher in the elementary school. The board named her to the academic post because Dr. Hynes, as superintendent, was also covering the job of business leader after the district had trouble keeping that post filled.

Ms. Rylott explained Monday night that her work is in four main areas: special education, chief information officer, overseeing the district’s “Response to Intervention” program and interfacing with the guidance teacher.

In the area of special education, she functions as chairwoman of the Committee on Special Education and works with special education teachers and aides to assess progress, provide professional development and assure that goals are being met.

As for Ms. Rylott’s role as chief information officer, she is responsible for submitting data to Eastern Suffolk BOCES and the New York State Education Department. New state mandates require a lot more filings than were once necessary, board member Elizabeth Melichar said.

“Jen’s role with Dr. Hynes is pivotal to making these things work,” she said.

The newly titled “Response to Intervention” program is similar, though more structured than the previous Academic Intervention Services, and now deals with identifying both academic and behavioral areas in which students need additional help. That program, too, involves more reporting and, therefore, more paperwork.

Ms. Rylott supervises the school’s guidance counselor and helps set and monitor the program to assure goals are being met.

She has already taken significant steps in all four areas to lay the ground work for her ongoing efforts, she and Dr. Hynes said.

Dr. Hynes promised the board that he and Ms. Rylott would be reporting more on each of these areas.

“This year, there’s a lot of educating that needs to take place” so the community understands the efforts being undertaken by the district, he said.

Responding to a request from board member Linda Eklund, Dr. Hynes agreed to provide monthly reports to show actual and projected expenses to enable the board to determine whether spending is on target in all areas.

In other actions last week, the board hired:

• Christine Gallagher as a permanent substitute teacher at $175 per day along with five sick days. Her appointment will last through June 21, 2013.

• Emily Hill as a social worker who will work part-time at a pro-rated salary of $32,459.

• Natalie Regan as a teacher assistant at a salary of $33,981.

• Lindsay Springer and Donna Matlock as teacher aides for special education for a 26-week probationary period. Ms. Springer will be paid $19,631 and Ms. Matlock, $18,352.

• Andrew Payne as a part-time teacher aide for a 26-week probationary period at a salary of $18,352.

• Stephanie Tybaert as a part-time food service worker for a 26-week probationary period at a salary of $16,907.

• Corey Best as a temporary custodial maintenance assistant from August 16 through 31, 2012, and Jim Best, Dana Foster and Jose Montalvo as temporary custodial maintenance assistants for September. All were hired at the rate of $15 an hour.

• Additional substitute teachers Alan Garrison, Kerri Knipfing, Mark Quintana, Denise Voegel and Kathleen Ward for the 2012-13 school year at $110 per day.
The board appointed United Comp Care of Riverhead to evaluate a particular employee’s health to determine if that person can perform responsibilities in the upcoming school year.

The board approved agreements with:

• Eldor Contracting Corporation in the amount of $373,000 for electrical work; Hirsch & Company for $325,500 for plumbing work; and S.J. Hoerning Construction for $1.138 million for general construction work. All expenditures were previously approved by voters in a May 2011 referendum.

• Bellringer Communications Incorporated of Southampton for a one-year contract to provide burglary and fire monitoring services and burglary system services for a total of $1,024.

• East End Kids Therapy for student services for the 2012-13 school year.

• Arshamomaque Dairy Incorporated to provide milk and dairy products and Donneson Provisions and Calip Dairies Incorporated to provide school lunch products.

The board approved transportation for two additional students to attend the Ross School in East Hampton.

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