The following are the remarks of New Hyde Park-Garden City Park Superintendent Robert Katulak made during the public meeting of the NHP-GCP Board of Education on Oct. 15, 2012:
Good evening ladies and gentlemen, tonight we have a number of reports. The first are the reports from our auditors, so I’d like to introduce Mariann Van Dyne, who will give you the external auditor’s report who represents R.S. Abrams and Lauren Agunzo from Nawrocki Smith to present on another audit, the claims audit, and as you know these are all additional unfunded mandates that come from the state that we have to comply with and so we’re doing what we have to do and we’re doing it well.
The district has re-submitted our APPR plan with the language revisions that the state education department had requested and we’re now waiting for a final approval. Our building contractors on the capital reserve project continue to work on the punch list items that the principals, custodians, teachers and the construction management company and spearheaded by Robert Moss, our director of facilities, has put together.
Instructionally our teachers and our administrators this afternoon worked for two hours working on the common core learning standards, especially paying attention to fluency as it pertains to the math standards and to primary source documents and non-fiction texts as they pertain to english language arts in the social studies field. We’re 98 percent finished with our baseline assessments in the common branch ELA and math as well as our specialist areas.
These baseline assessments will be used as the starting point to measure student growth over this academic year. Tonight, Mrs. LaRocca and I will be presenting the New York State Report Card results as they pertain to our district as well as the comparative data of some surrounding districts. We’ll also address any concerns that we have for the future as well as the programs and the strategies we have put into place to address those concerns.
As you know, we had talked about the fact that we have been awarded “reward status” and part of that was an opportunity to present a grant to New York State called the “Commissioner’s Dissemination Reward Grant.” It was designed so that schools that receive their reward status will be able to share their best practices with schools that were failing. There are five awards given out in New York State and our district received one of those awards. So the award is for $290,900 and we’ll be working with a struggling district that the state will assign to us so we’re very proud of our students, our staff, our teachers and our administrators for bringing us this great honor.
As you already heard this evening, in addition to our outstanding academic successes, we’re garnishing praise for our fiscal strategies and practices. Our board president, Mr. Gentile mentioned earlier this evening about the 5-year plan. We worked on that 5-year plan 3 years ago and that was in all areas: technology, finances, curriculum, instruction, professional development and buildings and grounds. And that’s been our guiding force to help us with our budgetary process as well as academic.
So again, because of those audits, I want to thank every administrator who was a budget builder and a budget maintainer, our business office and our central office staff and Mary Ellen Kenney and especially Michael Frank for a job well done.
And now I’d like to present our New York State Report Card and then Mrs. LaRocca will give you an update on our academic 5-year plan for curriculum and instruction.