Sag Harbor School Board President Theresa Samot, interim superintendent Dr. Carl Bonuso and board vice president Chris Tice at Monday night’s meeting.
By Tessa Raebeck
In unanimous votes Monday night, the Sag Harbor Board of Education (BOE) reelected Theresa Samot and Chris Tice as President and Vice President, respectively.
“I just want to thank Theresa for willing to be president again,” said Tice. “This has been a long and high-energy year as a school board member. I think you’ve done a very good job of helping to lead the team and I thank you for being willing to do it again.” Samot returned the praise, thanking Tice for her service.
Monday’s meeting marked the first of the new fiscal year and was thus reorganizational. District Clerk Mary Adamczyk was administered the Oath of Office by Interim Superintendent Dr. Carl Bonuso. Adamczyk in turn swore in Dr. Bonuso and Daniel Hartnett, a new trustee who returns to the school board after a two-year hiatus. Hartnett served two terms on the BOE between 2005 and 2011.
Throughout the meeting, the BOE discussed ways to enhance their transparency and improve communication with the community.
Samot recommended putting basic agendas for all meetings on the district website alongside a thorough calendar, which would include any educational workshops the board may hold, with the hopes of giving community members time to plan ahead and prepare for public input should they want to attend a meeting.
The BOE contemplated their capacity to film meetings, so that community members who cannot attend will be able to watch the happenings online. Tice recommended pricing out such a proceeding.
“I think for now a stationary camera and microphones might be a good place to start,” said Hartnett. The board did not make a concrete decision about filming, but agreed to look into it further.
The board reappointed its district clerk, substitute district clerk, district treasurer and internal claims auditor. District physicians and practitioners were reassigned and the official bank depositories and newspapers were again confirmed for the upcoming school year.
The firm of Hawkins, Delafield & Wood LLP was appointed as the bond counsel for the 2013 to 2014 school year at a rate not to exceed $12,000. The counsel will advise the district in the planning and preparation of resolutions for the facilities bond proposition, to be brought to the public for a vote in November (see related story).
Burton, Behrendt & Smith, an architectural firm, was confirmed to facilitate the additional projects that were approved via two resolutions in a community-wide vote in May. The improvements to the Sag Harbor Elementary School’s roof and dormers are estimated to cost $410,000. The renovations to the Pierson High School gym roof is estimated at $586,100 and those to the bleachers are at $117,500. The architect’s fee is 7-percent, or $77,952 if the estimated costs prove to be accurate.
During the public input session, Pierson Middle-High School Principal Jeff Nichols presented the results of the end of year testing to the board.
“AP results were very strong,” according to Nichols. In the inaugural year of the International Baccalaureate (IB) program, “our results were outstanding.”
IB exams are graded on a 7-point rubric. A score of 1 indicates “very poor” performance, while a 7 represents “outstanding” performance. In Sag Harbor, 48 of 54 students scored a 4 or higher, a score that denotes “satisfactory” performance. Sag Harbor had an 89-percent pass rate, “which compares favorably – from what I can tell – with most recognized IB schools worldwide,” according to Nichols. “For us to achieve that level in our first year is extraordinary.”
The next board meeting will outline and discuss goals for the upcoming school year. It will be held on Monday, July 15 and, if necessary, another goals oriented meeting will take place on Wednesday, July 17.