Board of Education to explore bus purchase

REPORTER FILE PHOTO Shelter Island School

Transportation for an Island school is among the major expenses any Board of Education must struggle with. And Shelter Island is no different.

A few years ago, to control transportation spending, the Shelter Island Board of Education eliminated participation in several athletic programs for students with teams that combined players from one or more North Fork high schools.

The district does provides transportation for some Island students who live within a distance considered too far to walk and for students who attend classes at private and parochial school off-Island.

For not the first time, the Board is exploring ways to provide transportation for  athletic programs and field trips. One possibility would be to purchase its own 20-passenger van.

That was among the subjects discussed at the Monday night Board of Education meeting, but at this stage, it’s simply one idea on the table that has yet to be fleshed out. Before such a proposal could become a reality, there’s a need to explore costs, both in terms of purchasing the vehicle, and operating and maintaining it.

Those costs would have to be balanced with the price to outsource transportation to  private companies.

The Board of Education begins its budget examination for the 2019-20 school year on January 8.

In other actions, the Board of Education:

Approved taping of budget sessions on January 8, 14 and 28; February 11; March 11; April 16; and May 13.

• Approved a capital improvement project for a bathroom renovation at a cost of $100,000 to be paid for through a Dormitory Authority of the State of New York grant.

• Heard a request from elementary school teacher Elizabeth Eklund for a field trip for students in grades 3 through 5 to the Bronx Zoo and for students in kindergarten through grade 2 to the Suffolk County Farm.

• Approved a field trip to the United Nations and the Jewish Heritage Museum in April for 10th grade students.

• Amended a previously approved appointment of Carolyn Taylor to teach science in grades seven through 12 at a salary of $71,714 to be prorated this year to $57,293 since the position began on November 12. The previous resolution had incorrectly prorated the salary to $59,407.

• Raised the pay for a cafeteria substitute from $11 to $12 per hour in line with the New York State minimum wage requirement.

• Appointed Peter Waldner to the Shared Decision-Making Committee

• Accepted the resignation of custodian Andrew Steinmuller effective on December 28.

• Appointed Nery Perez Monzon as a custodian on the night shift prorated to December 1 at a rate of $47,868.

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