Shelter Island Board of Education planning for fall school season

Superintendent of Schools Brian Doelger, Ed.D. reported at the May 11 Board of Education meeting on plans for the students expected to graduate in June, and the opening of school in the fall.

“We’re still holding out hope for an in-person graduation,” Mr. Doelger said.

He also announced that the school is planning to offer an afternoon pre-K in the fall for three-year-olds. Information on registration will be posted online and advertised.

He stated that the school was following plans devised by state experts for returning to school in September. Protective steps include installing hand washing stations, especially near food areas, and stocking up on hand sanitizers, masks and disinfectant.

“Our small class sizes should make it easy to meet social distancing guidelines,” he said. In addition, the school’s technology would be strengthened in case an uptick in cases required closing again.

With regard to the 2021 school budget, Mr. Doelger said the proposed budget would be posted online on May 22. A virtual public hearing on the budget will be held on May 27 at 4:30 p.m.

The Board accepted the Committee on Special Education recommendations for the current and upcoming school years and approved an updated Special Education Plan.

The Board also approved the following personnel actions:

• Approved tenure for Christopher Conrardy, in Technology Education, and Natalie Regan, in Elementary Education, both effective September 1.

• Abolishing one part-time teacher assistant position and one part-time elementary position in the tenure area of teacher assistant and directing the superintendent to provide written notice to the least senior employee in that tenure area. The position will be abolished effective July 1, 2020 and that employee will be placed on a preferred eligible list for reinstatement in accordance with the Education Law.

Audit response

In response to concerns raised by the New York State Controller’s office audit of the school district (see story, this page), the Board of Education formally established an Employee Liability Accrued Liability Reserve (ELALR), stating that they wished to rectify the omission of that action in the past. The ELALR serves to make cash payments to employees for accrued leave time upon separation. The Board, meeting on Monday, May 11, also approved a Corrective Action Plan resulting from the audit, to be filed with the State Controller and appropriate state authorities.