03/30/2015 8:00 AM
Shoreham-Wading River Superintendent Steven Cohen presents a portion of his proposed budget Tuesday night. (Credit: Paul Squire)

Shoreham-Wading River Superintendent Steven Cohen presents a portion of his proposed budget Tuesday night. (Credit: Paul Squire)

A preliminary look at the 2015-16 Shoreham-Wading River spending plan has revealed the district administration plans to stay under the state-mandated tax levy cap, despite still waiting for the state to release how much aid the district will get.

According to a budget proposal presentation by Superintendent Steven Cohen, the Shoreham-Wading River budget would increase by .9 percent in total from the 2014-15 school year spending plan.

That increase includes a jump in the tax levy of 1.5072 percent, just under what the district’s allowable tax limit will likely be, based on district calculations, Mr. Cohen said.

Due to budget disputes in Albany, the district still doesn’t know how much its state aid will increase, if at all, so the administration has budgeted for state aid to remain level.

Mr. Cohen said the district would rely less on its reserves and could tax less thanks to concessions from the teachers and employees unions. Under his proposed plan, special education would get a big boost, with an additional eight positions being added in the elementary and middle schools.

That would cut the ratio of special education to regular students in so-called inclusion classes in half, Mr. Cohen said.

“That is a huge increase in quality,” he said.

The full details of the budget will be revealed in the coming weeks.

psquire@timesreview.com

03/14/15 6:00am
03/14/2015 6:00 AM

Kevin Mann, retired teacher of Shoreham-Wading River High School, gave me the heads-up that for many years the high school students have traveled to Kenya and worked with and supported the children of Hope Children’s Home. One of those children, Betty Gakii, who came to the home in 2008 at age 15, recently finished her teacher training studies at Chuka University. She then got a teaching job at a local secondary school, got engaged and just became Mrs. Samuel Kathurima. The newlyweds live in Meru, a town not far from the home. Lesson learned: “The actions of high school youth do change lives … forever!” (more…)

02/28/15 7:00am
02/28/2015 7:00 AM

It seems like it was just yesterday my 10-year-old son’s class from Wading River Elementary School went on a field trip with their teacher, Jacqueline Savelli, to visit Kent Animal Shelter in Calverton. Ms. Savelli was passionate about dogs and teaching children that “no kill” shelters need our help to save these beautiful creatures that are an absolute gift to us. When our son came home that day he had told us about a roan-colored pit bull that walked across the backs of all the other dogs to get to him. (more…)

02/16/15 10:57am
02/16/2015 10:57 AM
Danielle Lawrence (Facebook)

Danielle Lawrence (Credit: Facebook)

Teachers at Riverhead High School remember Danielle Lawrence as a kind, sweet and talented girl who always had a smile on her face.

“She was the type of student that you wish you can have 10 of them just like her in your class,” said math teacher Athena Angerhauser. (more…)

02/16/15 5:09am
Police investigate the scene at 27 12th Street Monday morning following a double-murder and suicide. (Credit: Joe Pinciaro)

Police investigate the scene at 27 12th Street Monday morning following a double-murder and suicide. (Credit: Joseph Pinciaro)

One by one they left the Wildwood Acres Pavilion and headed up Hulse Avenue Monday night, lit candles in hand.

Braving temperatures well below freezing, approximately 70 friends and neighbors walked the few short blocks to the home on 12th Street where Tanya and Danielle Lawrence had been killed nearly 24 hours earlier.

The 43-year-old mother and her 17-year-old daughter were shot dead by Ms. Lawrence’s boyfriend, 44-year-old Thomas Calhoun, who then turned the gun on himself. Danielle was most likely shot coming to the aide of her injured mother, investigators said.  (more…)