I recently went on a building tour of my children’s school last week. I didn’t originally plan to go and I actually tossed the flyer the kids brought home announcing the tour. However, I began to receive emails and text messages telling me that I needed to be there. Really? What for? Didn’t I know all that I needed to know?
We moved to Valley Stream 8 years ago before our oldest turned two years old. I was about three months pregnant with our son at the time. We were told that we definitely needed to be in school district 13 because it was the best district to be in. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great district in terms of academics.
We purchased our home and settled in. Fast forward to today, the school is thriving, we have a wonderful principal, the kids like their teachers, the kids are happy, getting good grades and are very active in sports, music, and student council. However, after touring the facility, mamma is no longer as happy as I used to be.
So many questions were running through my head. How could those in charge allow our children to be educated in a building that appears to be falling apart? How can a building that brings on so many great memories for its alum be such a hazard to its current student population?
Meet the two candidates vying for a seat on the Board of Education December 2nd at Dever Elementary School.
The school just celebrated its 90th anniversary this year and in many areas, it looks as if the building hasn’t been updated since the first day of school.
I read the proposed list of necessary updates and when I saw that there is wiring that needs updating in the 1924 portion of the building, my mouth dropped. Literally.
I kept my composure but had so many questions. I have visited the school cafeteria so many times as a member of the Nutrition Committee but never took a moment to realize how potentially hazardous it is for our children to eat in the basement of the building with fire escapes set up for disaster. I walked past this window time and time again not even realizing this is one of three potential ways out. Have the kids practiced this?
The administration and teachers are making due with antiquated bells and whistles. I remember the bathrooms being discussed on social media earlier this year. I walked into the boys bathroom and understood why my son refused to use them last year.
The other parents, my husband and I just walked along the tour shaking our heads in disbelief. If the other parents, graduates, and senior citizens were on the tour, they too would shake their heads. Why would anyone want their children or neighbor’s children to be educated in a building that needs so much repair?
Swirling through my head were questions like, why has it come to this? Who let the building fall in such bad shape? I really try not to give my opinion on this blog about schools in our area for various reasons. However, something has to be said.
Our schools need your help. We need your vote on December 8th to pass a Bond Referendum to help bring our children’s schools back up to where they should be. Ninety year old Wheeler, 66 year old Dever, and 64 year old Howell and Willow Elementary schools all need your help. We are one. The other schools are much newer than Wheeler, but they all need your help.
I know you don’t want your taxes increased, but for just about an extra $10/month our children will be able to continue learning in safe facilities. Wheeler has done so much for our community and now it’s the community’s time to do something for it. Better schools + Great community + higher home sales….I think or it should.
Please vote yes for our kids. Vote YES on December 8th at your local home school whether you have a child there or not.
– A snapshot of what types of improvements are on the list:
– Refurbish previously divided rooms to provide code required fresh air
– Provide new ADA ramp at main entrance.
– Renovate completely the existing art room, including new casework, plaster traps and kiln room.
– Install new rooftop HVAC unit to provide for auditorium air conditioning (remember how how it was in September?)
– Add cafeteria space to south side of building.
– Upgrade the motion detection and general security system.
– Provide additional CCTV security cameras and monitoring system.
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