Week of April 29

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Issues current with the week of April 29, 2001.

-- Anonymous, April 29, 2001


Let's keep the ad comments focused on this week's ad as it gets too overwhelming.

*Are we certain that Bennett lost it's primary special education class? That's news to me. Be sure it's is double checked.

Simplify the AIS definition to say something like "AIS is a program designed to help all students in danger of not passing the new state requirements."

*The issue of the bus overruns should be kept in dollars and cents not mixing percentages. This was the suggestion Irene made at the meeting. For instance, late runs cost an extra $100,000 (544% increase) this year alone!

-- Anonymous, April 29, 2001

Barbara Boyce told us about the Bennett spec ed program loss. She had to consolidate classes and Spec Ed kids from Bennett were sent to other schools for services...leaving Bennett without its own primary Spec Ed class.

Jim can you give me the $dollar amount of the late bus runs?

Fine on the AIS change...

any others out there? Tobe

-- Anonymous, April 29, 2001

I'm curious where the spec ed bennet kids are going. I'm in the Phoenicia primary self contained. Am I going to work to find more kids in our classroom Monday morning? is it temporary? can ya see how parents of kids with identified needs get the feeling their kids are second class citizens...the first shuffled around and the ones who have the toughest time with transition and change!

-- Anonymous, April 29, 2001

At the meeting at the Woodstock Community Center on Saturday we had planned to distribute questions for this Monday's Candidate Night at 7pm at the High School.

Here's a few we liked culled from the SOS candidate interviews:

1)What do you think are the three greatest concerns facing Onteora, and how do you think the BOE should begin to address them?

2)Many students are apathetic and disengaged, as a Trustee of the BOE, what would you do to better engage students in learning?

3)As a Trustee of the BOE, what would you do to involve parents in their students' education?

4)Given the current stressors on American families, and the resulting lack of time and energy that many parents have for their children, some say that schools need to contribute to students social/emotional development in addition to academics. What do you think the school's responsibilities should include in the future and how would you envision implementing these ideas?

5)What research do you do on educational topics, and what was the last thing that you found out that you consider applicable to the Onteora School District?

-- Anonymous, April 29, 2001

Just heard that the CARE guys had a flat bed truck in Woodstock today with kids dressed as Indians on it...anyone see it, or get a picture???


-- Anonymous, April 29, 2001

hey I lied..here's the final chance in transportation..trying to make it crstal clear... Tobe


o Myth - Privatization of busing should save the district $500,000 in transportation costs in the next budget as promised by the "board majority." o Fact - THE TOTAL TRANSPORTATION COST IS UP IN NEXT YEAR'S BUDGET. Privatized contract busing costs are projected to be up $282,478 or 15.78%. Even with a reduction in the cost of district run busing, total transportation costs are up $137,748 in next year's budget.

-- Anonymous, April 30, 2001

hi tobe , fabulous incredible work. Thanks so much you all.

-- Anonymous, April 30, 2001

Fred and Chris a study in contrasts last night. Chris so stiff he seemed as if he'd just come back from the taxidermist, Fred very twitchy. Meg and Tom, good job. You looked very confidant and professional up there.

Are we getting any questions coming through from the website yet?

Today's Daily Freeman article on how the mascot referendum will stay on the ballot.

Happy May Day!

-- Anonymous, May 01, 2001

Fabulous Meet the Candidastes night...Bravo Meg & Tom. Does anyone have access to any photos the CARE caravan of Sunday, last?

Also our ranks keep growing, people aclling and volunteering. Julian of Pondechery will leaflet in town Friday night, make calls...etc..and others are getting in touch...

We have about 150 signs left ...others have more Meg & Tom, but we are basically down to Meg only signs.

Help us find more private spaces for these signs. They need good homes! We will have the printed versions of our space ad available in a few days, and need to complete the second ad for next week.

Do we all still want to follow the money and programs thread?...I thought it was effective last night... I'll post a newest version soon. Tobe

-- Anonymous, May 01, 2001

2 weeks from today!!!!!!

Advising someone who knows nothing about what's happening, I realized how important it is to identify the budget, the propositions, and the "non binding" referendum as well as Meg and Tom.......we need to win the whole package!

-- Anonymous, May 01, 2001

Meg got an interesting call tonight. a W Hurley resident saying he was originally in favor of the mascot, didn't have a problem with it, happened too fast..you know Ameriucans don't like being told whart to do, etc etc, etc., but now with the referendum, he wishes there were a third choice...so he (and others) feel it's time to move on, without saying they thought the intent was bad...I suggested he ignore the referendum question and what counted was the vote for board members...Interesting that he expressed a strong desire to move on...perhaps he and others are seeing the referndum as a political move and it will bite Perry in the ass! Tobe

PS Curry and I completed the video today, and it is (as Jim said) "very compelling."

-- Anonymous, May 01, 2001

Don't forget that you can tape the flyers to the inside of your back car windows. Just make sure they are not obscuring your vision.

Any questions coming via email to the candidates?

-- Anonymous, May 02, 2001

No questions yet. I hope we are not having problems there by ignoring people.

-- Anonymous, May 02, 2001

Val mentioned to me that someone by the name of Dave Simon e-mailed her and had a difficult time getting through with the e-mail question to Tom. You can call her at 657-2828 for details. I have problems with it on Eudora as well. So I'm not sure what to do.

-- Anonymous, May 02, 2001

Time to work on the last ad..hers' the current text..please add subtract etc. Tobe ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ FOCUS ON EDUCATION

The Onteora "board majority" claims to be saving you money while not cutting programs.

DISTRICT RESIDENTS NEED TO KNOW THE TRUTH! Fred Perry and the "board majority" worked against passage of the 2000-2001 budget. The school district eliminated more than one million dollars in planned school programs and support services when Onteora was forced onto an austerity budget. Here's a list of some existing programs that were cut and plans that were eliminated due to the "board majority's" poor judgment. No academic programs or security programs were saved by the "board majority."

Existing Program Cut - Summer Pre-Kindergarten Program ($ 26,589) Existing Program Cut - Elementary Summer School Program ($ 51,938) Eliminated - $ 33,396 planned for High School Academic Intervention Services for Regular Education students, Special Education students and ESL students Eliminated - $ 26,732 planned for summer Curriculum Development Eliminated - $ 30,000 planned for Staff Development. Eliminated - $133,923 planned for School Security Personnel. (There have been NO on-duty security personnel in the schools this year.) Eliminated - $ 4,000 planned for High School student after-school activities Eliminated - $ 51,033 planned for custodial services Eliminated - $127,967 planned for equipment for all district academic and service areas including athletics, maintenance, custodial, special education, office, etc. Eliminated - $ 79,300 planned for Textbooks Eliminated - $ 43,644 planned for district administrative personnel Eliminated - $ 59,188 planned for Phoenicia Elementary School Classroom Teacher Eliminated - $ 56,620 planned for Primary Special Education Class at Bennett Eliminated - $ 70,813 planned for Teaching Aides Eliminated - $ 28,283 planned for half-time English as a Second Language Teacher Eliminated - $ 17,703 planned for Teaching Aide for Reading Eliminated - $ 35,406 planned for Teaching Aides for students who are not receiving special education. Eliminated - $155,530 planned for staff support, such as health insurance & benefits

Total programs cut or plans eliminated - $1,032,065

The District received a windfall of $236,906 from staff retirements. Without prioritizing spending, the "board majority" immediately spent $101,626 to re-instate JV and modified athletics. They spent an additional $95,302 to add back field trips, chaperones, co-curricular activities and the 2nd late bus run to cover athletics. Without this hefty retirement bonus, the district would have cut these programs as well. Re-instating these programs was not a result of any generosity or wisdom on the part of the "board majority." Vote for Meg Carey & Tom Rosato Onteora Board of Education Election: Tuesday o May 15 2-9 PM Help Us Win! Call: 657-2914 or 688-2214 www.onteora.net Sponsored by S.O.S. Support Onteora Schools

-- Anonymous, May 02, 2001

I just did a test of the ask a question portion of the web site, and it worked fine...it is a bit unnerving not to know when your message has been sent...perhaps there's a way to say "thanks for sending the question" after the person hits the button. Tobe

-- Anonymous, May 02, 2001

Angry Olivebridgeans: we've lost 4 signs in Olivebridge area in the past 24 hours. Two on Acorn Hill at the corners of county route 3 and 28A, two at the 28A/Monument Road triangle. May be an expression of generic vandalism rather than partisan, since some of the Perrys at the triangle were trashed too.

-- Anonymous, May 03, 2001

We have replacement signs available. Elizabeth will see that the church attendees and shops in phoenicia have ourt myths and fact sheet.

Looks great in Wood Times at first blush..then they messded it up so I feel just like Ted did with his signs..Three or four missspellings and typos...makes me grit my teeth...I'll ask for $$ back and an apology...doesn't do for education advocates to do bad spelling.


Heres' a NEW IDEA FOR THE LAST AD>>>NOT MONEY DETAILS BUT an open letter to the voters from Meg & Tom.

First pass...What say, Tom???others? Tobe ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ To voters of the Onteora District,

This is a critical Board of Education election. Some have said the soul of the district is at stake. Please forgive us if our words seem harsh, but the reality of what has been happening on the current Board of Education is in fact quite shocking. If you’ve seen the board in person or on video then you know what we mean.

We strongly believe Fred Perry and the “board majority” are on a dangerous path. They act in a manner that we wouldn’t allow in our classrooms or on our athletic teams. Yet secrecy, screaming, bullying, lying, withholding information, and poor judgment have become routine over the past year.

Mr. Perry and the majority are spending taxpayer money on investigations, litigation and “charges" against our Superintendent.

We are determined to focus on education. We seek to add academic intervention services needed to prevent failure of the more stringent Regents tests. We want increased classroom help and more textbooks. We want students to have more after school activities and faculty to have more training. These are all items that the “board majority” eliminated from the current operating budget.

Hostility intimidation and bullying coupled with poor educational judgement costs the district in morale as well as in dollars.

Let’s work together and make Onteora truly excellent in education. We seek your support on Election Day, May 5th.


Meg Carey & Tom Rosato

-- Anonymous, May 03, 2001


I deleted the excessively long NCAA post which I feel is more appropriate on the STAND bbs not this one. Sorry. Let's stay focused on our mission.

-- Anonymous, May 03, 2001

What do you think about adding something like this?

We seek to put the Mascot issue behind us. This one issue has distracted our community away from important educational matters for to long. The Mascot and its symbols remain part of the Onteora culture and its fate should be left to those other than this School Board.

Inserted after "We are determined to focus on education".

-- Anonymous, May 04, 2001

The Middletown Times Herald Record has in their online news briefs the announcement of Meg and Tom on Olive Cable next week.

-- Anonymous, May 04, 2001

I'll have Sharon, my faithful editor, to look at the first paragraph as I feel it could use tightening up. Otherwise, it seems to be heading in the right direction especially with Tom's addition regarding the mascot.

-- Anonymous, May 04, 2001

I'm not fond of the whiney "We want" or the CAPS instead I suggest this edited version:

Meg Carey and Tom Rosato are determined to focus on education.

They are support:

Increased classroom help for all children who need it.

Modern textbooks for our students.

More after-school activities for our students.

Pre-K and elementary summer school classes

Continued Education and training for our teaching staff.

These are all items that the "board majority" was too quick to eliminate from the austerity budget.

Mr. Perry and the majority are spending taxpayer money AND SCHOOL BOARD TIME on lawyers and investigations, litigation, and "charges" against our district Superintendent.

Hostility and intimidation OF ADMINISTRATION AND STAFF AND TEACHERS, COMBINED with poor educational judgment, costs the district in morale and money.

But no one seems to be concerned about our children's education!

Help us make Onteora truly excellent in education. We seek your support on Election Day, May 5th. Please Vote for Meg Carey and Tom Rosato!

-- Anonymous, May 04, 2001

Here's another ad (Ad #2) for the Sunday Freeman.

The current Onteora School Board majority proudly claims to have found lost money in our school budget. If this is true then why are our taxes increasing by 8 1/4%! Don't believe the smoke and mirrors!

Restore budget stability to the Onteora School Board.

Vote for Meg Carey and Tom Rosato on Tuesday, May 15.

-- Anonymous, May 04, 2001

Friday at 6:15 just before leaving to go with Meg as she gets ready to appear with Tom on Channel 3 in woodstock...here's the latest...softer tone, all positive (I hope). I don't believe we should mention the mascot, and certainly not say it's not in the board's hands...as it ultimately is, unless there's a state or federal edict. ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Oh, the 'whiney" tone can be changed, but it should be written as from them...not third person..any suggestions?

To voters of the Onteora District, We are candidates for the Board of education determined to focus on education. We want to assist all students achieve more in school. We seek to add academic intervention services needed by students to prevent failure when taking the more stringent Regents tests. let's create smaller class sizes and provide modern textbooks. These will help all students. Students need to have more after school activities and faculty needs to have more opportunities for staff development.

We favor summer Pre-K and elementary summer school, and we favor foreign language study starting in the elementary grades. We’re eager to learn about effective traditional and non-traditional programs that we can add to help raise student academic achievement. This must be the key work of the Onteora Board of Education.

We seek a welcoming atmosphere. We must create a Board climate and Code of Conduct that treats everyone with civility and respect. We will work for a climate in which it‘s easy and comfortable for the administration, teachers, parents, students, and the community to work together with the Board of Education. We will work to insure that all the district’s business is on the published agenda. The public and all board members must be fully informed of the issues before us.

Our vision for Onteora is to create a district that reaches the highest possible academic and social standards.

Please help us make Onteora truly excellent in education.

We seek your support on Election Day, May 5th.


Meg Carey & Tom Rosato

Please comment. Tobe ++++++++++++

-- Anonymous, May 04, 2001

I'm plodding through the phone list from Morty. Many folks are undecided...I've managed to convince a few. The mascot issue seems important to a few on this Dem list. Majority are undecided, but sick of the mascot issue. A bunch are a firm yes. I am encouraged by the undecided people. They are expressing unhappiness over mascot issue being used as political ploy and the actions of board majority are embarrassing. I skipped the Perry's and Vanacour's on my list. Anyone want them? ha ha. Shandaken is stubborn as always. I'm concentrating on staff at Phoenicia not to vote for Goodman. I'm still getting signs up...a few more on private property too. Yea for the Blue Barn!! I think Tom's suggestion concerning mascot issue to "put behind us" is important. It will reach those sick of the issue and there's many. I love the full page ad! Looks great and gets attention. Thanks Toby. Seeing it made me smile and rejuvenated....after seeing it I flew through 2 more phone pages!

Is there a meeting tomorrow? I would also like more signs please...where to get them?

I got a phone call today at work asking me to pull together special ed parents. Board plans to vote on approving shaw hiring investigator to come in and do dirty work. We need regular ed perspective also expressed at board meeting concerning money being spent on people we don't need in the district. Who are they going for? Barbara Boyce I bet. Just like hal rowe. They'll spend and spend til they find "something", call it a justification and spend more. this is taking $$ away from kids. Encourage people to write in the papers and speak at public be heard.

-- Anonymous, May 04, 2001

I have signs which we can add at the mid-to-end of next week. No reason to keep our energy on signs though. The sheet of Fact vs. Myth is good and I have some of those at my house. Anyone is welcome to come by tomorrow before noon to pick up signs or pamphlets. After that I will be unavailable. NO MEETING TOMORROW!! But there is an opening day baseball game tomorrow at the Olive park in Shokan. Plenty of parents and an opportunity to pamphlet. Betsy is on that if anyone wishes to help her. Sunday I will be with the candidates pamphleting around but a schedule has not yet been decided. We need most of our activity in OLive and Shandaken if anyone has ideas for Sunday for baseball games or such that we can stop by at please post here. Thanks.

Please be sure to submit your phone lists to Morty as he needs them ASAP.

BTW-I hear Meg and Tom won the mock election at the high school. YEA!!!

-- Anonymous, May 04, 2001

Heard Meg & Tom won the mock school election. Anyone have any details?

-- Anonymous, May 05, 2001

Did someone say details?

560 student votes were cast in the Mock Board of Education Election held Thursday, May 3, 2001. The results are as follows:

Johansen Bennett: 13 (2.3%) Phoenicia: 16 (2.9%) West Hurley: 5 (0.1%) Woodstock: 12 (2.1%) Total: 46 (8.2%)

Carey Bennett: 46 (8.2%) Phoenicia: 24 (4.3%) West Hurley: 50 (8.9%) Woodstock: 73 (12.5%) Total: 193 (34.5%)

Rosato Bennett: 39 (7.0%) Phoenicia: 28 (5.0%) West Hurley: 41 (7.3%) Woodstock: 57 (10.2%) Total: 165 (29.5%)

Goodman Bennett: 18 (3.2%) Phoenicia: 15 (2.7%) West Hurley: 18 (3.2%) Woodstock: 17 (3.0%) Total: 68 (12.1%)

Perry Bennett: 34 (6.1%) Phoenicia: 28 (5.0%) West Hurley: 15 (2.7%) Woodstock: 11 (2.0%) Total: 88 (15.7%)

-- Anonymous, May 05, 2001

Way to go Erik!! Impressive numbers, don't ya think? Will you write a letter in newspapers please explaining process and outcome? It would be great for this weeks issues! A "this is what the students think" letter. Yea!

-- Anonymous, May 05, 2001

Erik: Teens in my house want to know what the results were concerning smoking issue on ballot.

-- Anonymous, May 05, 2001

latest rewrite...getting closer now...11;30 PM sat.

we had a great Truth tape showibng. Curry gavce a tape to chris Johansenn who was there and sat through two showings.

Michael Goodman was also there.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ To voters of the Onteora School District,

This is a critical Board of Education election. Some have said that the soul of the district is at stake. Please forgive us if our words seem blunt, but the reality of what has been happening on the current Board of Education is in fact quite alarming. If you’ve seen the board in person or on video, then you know what we mean. We are Board of Education candidates focused on education. The Board has the responsibility to have its own clear vision and to support specific programs that help raise student academic achievement. This must be the key work of the Onteora Board of Education. Our agenda for education includes providing the educational leadership needed for all students to succeed.

Some programs we seek to strengthen include those for average students needing help to meet the more demanding state standards. We recognize the importance of smaller class sizes and academic intervention services. The district must update its textbooks and incorporate proven and effective traditional and non-traditional approaches to teaching. Students need to have more electives and increased after school activities in addition to our strong sports and music programs. The faculty needs more opportunities for curricular development. The youngest students in the district need a return of valuable summer Pre-K and elementary summer school programs.

We seek to build a welcoming and trusting atmosphere on the board, one with a climate that treats everyone with respect and civility. All the district’s business must be on the published agenda. No more secret plans that ambush some board members and the public late at night. We will work to make it comfortable once again for the administration, teachers, parents, students, and the community to work together with the Board of Education.

We want to move on and focus on education. Our vision for Onteora is to create a public school district that reaches the highest possible academic and social standards.

Please help us make Onteora truly excellent in education.

We seek your support on Election Day, Tuesday May 15th.


-- Anonymous, May 05, 2001

259 responses were counted in the smoking survey (133 male, 126 female).

102 students (or 39.4%) think that silent detectors are the best solution;

34 students (or 13.1%) think that fines should be charged to those who are caught; and

28 students (or 10.8%) think that more prevention programs in the lower grades will solve the problem;

24 students (or 9.3%) think that stricter enforcement of the rules is needed;

17 students (or 6.6%) think that smoking cessation programs should be made available;

15 students (or 5.8%) think that we need more monitors for the hallways and bathrooms;

39 students (or 15.1%) think that there is no problem and nothing needs to be done.

Of the 39 students who think that there is no problem, 30 are male and 9 are female. 92.9% of females and 77.4% of males, felt there was a problem of some sort. We will see what the Board of Education will do with this data Monday night.

Sayde (the President of the Student Affairs Council) will be writing a letter to the papers revealing the students choice in the Mock Election. She will also be the one presenting the data Monday night during Students Be Heard.

-- Anonymous, May 06, 2001

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