Greenport school officials set public meeting to discuss track project

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08/19/2013 5:00 PM |
GARRET MEADE PHOTO | From left, three Greenport freshmen — Nick Wallace, Justin Bracken and Bayron Rivas — during Monday's practice.

GARRET MEADE PHOTO | From left, three Greenport students — Nick Wallace, Justin Bracken and Bayron Rivas — during practice in March. The school is planning to restore its own track in time for the upcoming school year.

Greenport school officials will hold a public meeting Thursday to discuss the district’s progress with restoring its track in time for the upcoming school year.

The grassroots campaign started when the Mattituck-Cutchogue School District recently ended its agreement to allow Greenport students to practice on its facilities. For the past two years, Greenport students have practiced in Mattituck and both districts have participated on separate teams. [Last week, Mattituck announced it will hold a special election in October for a track bond proposal].

The Southold School District, which currently doesn’t have a track team, has agreed to join Greenport in its efforts and plans to create a combined “Clippers” track team with Greenport this upcoming school year, Greenport Superintendent Michael Comanda said Monday.

He said the track will need to be completed by December in order for it to be ready for the track team to practice on this spring. Although the team will be able to practice on the track this season, its meets will all be hosted elsewhere.

Greenport school board president Heather Wolf and Lisa DeLuca, a Greenport parent helping to organize the plan, said in a letter addressed to parents and students that the school is committed to providing a facility for track athletes and some local contractors have offered to help with the project.

“The administration and school board, along with Greenport’s new Athletic Director Jim Caliendo, have been scrambling to enlist community members to help restore the practice track at Greenport,” Ms. Wolf and Ms. DeLuca wrote. “Since the announcement from Mattituck was made in the spring, there was no time to plan and budget for this.”

In addition to refurbishing the track, they said equipment needs to be purchased and coaches hired.

Mr. Caliendo, district administrators and school board members will be on hand at Thursday’s 7 p.m. meeting at the school to discuss the future of Greenport track.

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