Concerns over transportation cuts
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Taxpaying residents whose children attend private school and don’t necessarily attend one of these two schools are up in arms, as am I, whose twin daughters attend Sacred Heart Academy. Most importantly, I don’t believe the district takes into account the safety and security of its students traveling to and from school, particularly young girls, who may appear vulnerable. Public transportation is really not an option for my girls since it would take two buses, with the transfer point being in an unsafe area and the scheduling inconsistent, taking upwards of 1½ hours to get to a school that is only 15 minutes from my home.
I question whether Superintendent Dr. Bill Heidenreich and his staff would want it on their conscience if even one Valley Stream student were attacked because they proposed to eliminate private-school buses in the budget. Personally, I am embarrassed to let anyone know what I pay in school taxes, contributing to these enormous salaries but not receiving proper transportation for my daughters.
I think the Central High School District needs to look into other areas to cut, namely costs to transport their sports teams to and from Firemen’s Field, which I know costs a hefty sum. They also need to do a more thorough examination of students attending the schools, particularly those who attend illegally. The cost of these students can add up at our expense.
I have written letters to Dr. Heidenreich, Dr. Loper, the assistant superintendent, and the entire Board of Education, and alerted the principals at both Sacred Heart Academy and Chaminade. Sacred Heart leaders responded that they will be looking into this. Naturally, they are concerned, as are all the private schools in Nassau County, about keeping admissions up, and my concern is for the future of these schools if all districts start following suit. I really don’t believe this is the way the budget should go. In fact, parents sending their child to a private institution are saving money for their district, and the district is receiving is free money to utilize in its budget.