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Schreiber Gets Speed Cam

In an effort to enhance student safety, while also supporting the efforts of local law enforcement to crack down on speeders, Nassau County lawmakers passed a resolution in June, allowing for the deployment of speed enforcement camera systems in school zones for all of the 56 public school districts in the county.

Now, with school already in session, mobile speed cameras have been deployed, issuing violations to any speeders who zip past the Paul D. Schreiber Senior High School in Port Washington. The cameras are designed to take a snapshot of anyone exceeding the posted school zone limit (20 mph) by a speed of 11 or more miles per hour, so drivers are encouraged to travel with caution during school hours.

“We sincerely believe that these cameras will improve the safety for students in and around their school,” said Nassau County Traffic Safety Coordinator Christopher M. Mistron. “It is our hope that the installation of speed cameras will slow down traffic and improve the safety environment around our schools sufficiently to allow children to walk to school.”

Mistron also told the Port Washington News that prior to the enactment of this law, Nassau County conducted a traffic study in front of several schools, finding an average 200 motorists traveling 25 mph or more above the posted limit. Similarly, he said that districts in other states that have deployed speed cameras around school zones found an 80 percent drop in violations.

“It has already had a positive effect around the country,” he said, “I want this to be a dinner conversation. Positive or negative, they’ll cause some discussion.”

As of press time, only two mobile cameras have been deployed within the Town of North Hempstead; the first at Schreiber High School and a second at Great Neck North Middle School.

Port Moms Fight For Privacy

Deborah Abramson Brooks (left) and Allison White with their petition to stop inBloom. With all of the signatures and comments, the document runs nearly 500 pages.

Deborah Abramson Brooks (left) and Allison White with their petition to stop inBloom. With all of the signatures and comments, the document runs nearly 500 pages.

Remember inBloom? This was to be a giant database of virtually everything about every public school student in America. Backed by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and headquartered in Atlanta, inBloom was billed as a state-of-the-art way to track our children’s progress.
The trouble was, nobody was quite sure if this database was impervious to hackers. And inBloom wasn’t exactly promising that it wouldn’t sell the data to those hawking everything from study guides to ADHD medications.
Nonetheless, among the early believers in this was the New York State Education Department (NYSED), a data-obsessed bureaucracy that believes education is best measured with decimal points.
When the state’s parents got wind of what this would mean, there was an uproar. Letters, calls, petitions, emails, visits to Albany and hearings around the state.
Among those battling inBloom at the grassroots level were two Port Washington moms — Deborah Abramson Brooks and Allison White. Along with others around the state and groups such as New York City’s Class Size Matters (CSM), inBloom was not only was kicked out of New York, but it also closed up shop altogether. Quite an achievement born of outrage.
The state legislature stayed on the student privacy bandwagon long enough to enact further legislation on the topic.
What happened next? Well, I will let Deborah Abramson Brooks take it from here:

In late March 2014, our New York State Legislature enacted new student data privacy and protection measures into law. Among other features of the law, two requirements were particularly important in safeguarding student data privacy and protection in New York State.
One was the legal imperative on State Education Commissioner John King to appoint a Chief Privacy Officer. The new legislation delineated specific qualifications required of the person selected for that position.
The other requirement was for that newly appointed and qualified Chief Privacy Officer to draft a Parents’ Bill of Rights for student data privacy and protection, and for that newly appointed Chief Privacy Officer to elicit and include the input of parents and other stakeholders in that endeavor.
New York State Allies for Public Education (NYSAPE) and Class Size Matters have been monitoring NYSED’s compliance (or lack thereof) with this new law. In response to NYSED’s continued failure to comply with the law, NYSAPE and CSM have written to Commissioner King and the NYS Board of Regents. In this letter, NYSAPE and CSM express concern with NYSED’s failure to properly implement the new student data privacy law, and with NYSED’s serious omissions in the Parents’ Bill of Rights.
These failures and omissions merely reinforce NYSAPE’s, CSM’s and numerous individuals’ lack of confidence in NYSED’s commitment to protect student data and respect parental rights — especially with a new school year underway.
We keep hearing how the state Education Department may have botched the roll-out of the Common Core curriculum, but otherwise they are pretty fabulous. I’m not so sure. As Brooks points out, they also seem to be botching the roll-out of student privacy.

Math In Focus Workshops


The Port Washington School District will host a series of workshops during September to update parents and guardians on the continued implementation of its new Math in Focus program.

The Math in Focus program, for students in Kindergarten through eighth grade, was adopted by the district last spring. The program provides an authentic Singapore math curriculum, which highlights problem solving as the focus of mathematical learning. The program enables students to learn concepts through hands-on experiences in the classroom through the use of technology, eBooks, Interactive Whiteboard activities and online activities.

            Parent workshops have been scheduled as part of the district’s implementation plan for the program. The following workshops are scheduled:


  • Sept. 22, 12-3 p.m.; Sousa Elementary All Purpose Room; Parents of students in grades four and five


  • Sept. 22, 8-11 a.m.; Salem Library; Parents of students in second and third grade


  • Sept. 23, 12:10 – 3:10 p.m.; Weber Middle School Teacher Center; Parents of students in grades six and eight


  • Sept. 29, 12- 3 p.m.; Sousa Elementary All Purpose Room; Parents of students in Kindergarten and first grade


“As we successfully continue the implementation of our Math in Focus program, I encourage all parents and guardians to attend our workshops so that they may learn more about the program as well as the professional development taking place among our teaching staff,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kathleen Mooney.

Chamber Installs Officers

Assemblywoman Michelle Schimel administering the oath of office to chamber co-presidents Mitch Schwartz (l.) and Warren Schein at last year’s ceremony

Assemblywoman Michelle Schimel administering the oath of office to chamber co-presidents Mitch Schwartz (l.) and Warren Schein at last year’s ceremony

The Port Washington Chamber of Commerce will hold its annual installation of officers and directors at a dinner to be held at Ayhan’s Fish Kebab Restaurant on Oct. 1.

The swearing in ceremonies will be performed by State Assemblywoman Michelle Schimel, Town Councilwoman Dina De Giorgio and Town Clerk Wayne Wink.

In addition, the chamber will present certificates of appreciation to the chairpeople of the HarborFest Model Boat Regatta: Arlene Kase, Mary Lu Dempsey Palafox, Bill Palafox and Marian Weissman. Bill Brakman will be honored for his contributions posthumously.

The chamber dinners are known for their enjoyable, casual atmosphere. The festivities are always light-hearted as Warren Schein, chamber co-president, is the emcee for the evening’s ceremonies. He always brings a little laughter and lots of pride in the chamber’s accomplishments to the occasion.

The chamber’s other co-president is Mitch Schwartz, whom many in town know for his vast knowledge of computers and the Internet, as well as his involvement in many worthy causes.

Officers for 2014–2015 are: First Vice President Debbie Greco Cohen, Second Vice President Anne Arter, Third Vice President Catherine O’Neill, Secretary Wendy Collett and Treasurer Leslie Ann Jacobi.

Port Man Hit By Car

A Port Washington man was struck by a car while laying in the roadway at Main Street and South Bayles Avenue on Wednesday, Sept. 10, at around 1 a.m.

Police declined to identify the man.DSCN0424

He was taken to North Shore University Hospital, with serious injuries.

The driver of the vehicle was not charged.

This is the second grave vehicular incident at Main Street and South Bayles Avenue in a month. In August, a Lynbrook man crossing Main Street, at S. Bayles, was killed in a hit and run in which the alleged driver was subsequently caught.

Weber Student Holds Bear Drive

studentIn conjunction with his Bar Mitzvah, Weber Middle School student Ethan Sanft completed a “mitzvah” project that motivated him to volunteer his time with and give support to a charitable organization.

After doing some research on several organizations, Ethan learned about Hugs Across America and the work they do and decided he would like to work with them to help others. Hugs Across America is a non-denominational, not-for-profit charitable organization that provides teddy bears, curricular materials and messages of care to lessen the fear and anxiety experienced by children in crisis. [Read more...]

Town Hosting First BeachFeast

Untitled-2The Town of North Hempstead is hosting its first “BeachFeast” celebration, a food and spirits festival at North Hempstead Beach Park in Port Washington Sept. 14, from noon to 5 p.m.
“We are so excited for BeachFeast to become a North Hempstead tradition,” said Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth. “This the first year that we will be hosting this event and we hope that our residents enjoy the opportunity to taste some new foods and some old favorites, all while having a great afternoon on the beach.” [Read more...]

Community Synagogue Plans BBQ

bbqThe Community Synagogue of Port Washington is holding an old fashioned family BBQ, open to all who wish to attend.
The event will serve as a time for newcomers to meet clergy, members and get a general feel for the synagogue. There will be activities for all including crafts and a kid-friendly dinner.
The event will be held at The Community Synagogue, 160 Middle Neck Rd., Sunday, Sept. 7, at 4:30 p.m. [Read more...]

First Recipient Of Boyce Award

awardGus Nuzzolese of Port Washington was chosen as the first W.D. Boyce Award recipient by the Theodore Roosevelt Council. Nuzzolese is senior executive director with Colliers International and received his honor at the inaugural W.D. Boyce cocktail reception and fundraiser at the Port Washington Yacht Club. The reception benefited the council’s “Scoutreach Program,” which is dedicated to meeting the developmental needs of youth in many Nassau County neighborhoods considered at-risk. W.D. Boyce award is named after the businessman whose foresight and determination brought the Boy Scouts to America and is given to a hardworking citizen and businessman who is “living a Scout-like life.”

Noted Author To Speak At Landmark

authorNew York Times bestselling author Philippa Gregory will be touring in the United States in September and Port Washington is her first stop.

She will be discussing The King’s Curse (on sale Sept. 9) which follows Henry VIII’s rise to power. The King’s Curse is the next volume of Gregory’s Cousins’ War novels, basis for the Starz series, The White Queen. [Read more...]