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School Trustees Answers to Recent Questions

School Board Trustees Tom Pinou (left) Bob Martin (right)
School Board Trustees Tom Pinou (left) Bob Martin (right)

At the November EPOA meeting and during the East Nominating Committee interviews, many questions about our School District were asked.  Garden City School Board Trustees Tom Pinou and Bob Martin have sent us the following response to the unanswered questions from those meetings.


Question: APPR teacher ratings: How many teachers were rated at the lowest level?

Answer: None of the Garden City teachers were rated at the lowest level.



Question: What is the total number of employees and what is the total number of administrators?

Answer: There are 638.9 full time equivalents employed in the district. There are 27 educational administrators.


Question: It was stated that Scarsdale offers a computer coding class. Will Garden City offer, or consider offering, such a class?

Answer: There are several computer science programs that are offered as electives to High School students. The upcoming Winter program will offer a pilot program in coding to 4th and 5th graders. The program will meet on 8 Saturdays for a 1 hour instructional program.  



Question: Will the District consider forming a citizen’s budget review committee?

Answer:  The Board has been asked this question in the past. The Board continues to believe that the public budget review process is extensive and transparent. Several public meetings are devoted to explaining the budget, including the tax levy limit, and the various New York State mandates. The Board discusses and debates the resulting alternatives in public. In the past several years, the Board has adjusted the budget, also in public, as new information from Albany becomes available. These meetings are very well attended. All members of the public, not just members of a committee, have the opportunity to ask questions.



Question: Will the District consider the creation of a Schools Foundation?

Answer: The formation of a Foundation is not in the control of the School Board or the School District. If a Foundation is to be formed, leadership must come from the community.



Question: Can the District use volunteers for lunch duty?

Answer: The District has chosen not to use volunteers. In general, there are issues of supervision and accountability with volunteers.



Question: What is the total number of the High School age children living in the District who attend private or parochial schools (i.e. Chaminade or others?) Has the % of students attending other schools changed over the years?

Answer: This school year, 359 children attend out of district High Schools. The percentage of High School age children attending private or parochial high schools ranged from 13% to 18% over that past several years. The percentage fluctuates each year within this band.



Question: Has there been any thought to reviving the early morning gym programs? Would the answer to this question change if parents were willing to pay for these programs?

Answer: There is no current plan to reinstitute the morning gym program.



Question: Last time the survey went out to ask parents of their interest in early morning programs flyers went home in school bags. Many parents were not aware of the questionnaire. In the future, can surveys like this be posted on new School Website or can parents be notified in other ways?

Answer: Several people had this same comment. The District will continue to look for alternative ways to reach parents.