Oysterponds School stays with Greenport, for now

03/31/2011 11:25 AM |

JULIE LANE PHOTO | Joan Frisicano Oysterponds acting superintendent/principal could become permanent part-time superintendent in July, but that decision won't be made until school board members have interviewed other candidates. A resolution to make her permanent part-time superintendent was pulled from the agenda Wednesday night.

Oysterponds junior and senior high school students will continue to attend classes in Greenport in the fall, but that could change next year.

After hearing from a parade of students and parents saying Wednesday night that they all “bleed purple” and want to continue the district’s relationship with Greenport, the Oysterponds school board withdrew a motion that would have named both Greenport and Mattituck-Cutchogue as “possible receiving districts” for the 2011-12 school year. The board then voted unanimously to continue to send the students to Greenport next school year.

But that’s far from a long-term commitment. The board intends on scheduling a May referendum asking residents if they want a choice of other high schools.

The wording of the proposition has yet to be drafted, but board members agreed that if only about 10 percent of voters want to explore the possibility of sending secondary students to another district, it probably wouldn’t be worth further exploring.

But if 40 percent or so say yes, the board may explore other possibilities.

Several years ago, the board established a community committee to consider high school alternatives. The group investigated the Mattituck-Cutchogue, Greenport and the Shelter Island school systems. Southold opted not to participate.

Although the group’s findings appeared to favor Mattituck-Cutchogue, the school board did not act on it.

In other action, the board also withdrew a motion to appoint Joan Frisicano permanent part-time superintendent as of July 1.

While assuring her that the decision didn’t reflect any dissatisfaction with her work since coming on in an interim capacity in December, board member Linda Goldsmith said she wants she wants time to review other resumes and to carefully vet the next permanent hire.



558 Comment

  • Hmmmm for the cost per student that this district enjoys, why not disband the entire school and send everyone up to a toney prep school…..

  • Ms Frisicano is a great gift to our community. She is smart, dedicated, honest and a great fit for our school. We would be very fortunate to have her accept the position of Superintendent. I found the comments last night about hiring an accounting firm to create the budget offensive. The public has learned more in these sessions than ever before. The information is transparent, clear and I finally understand what we need to support the teachers, children and families. Hats off to Ms Frisicano for driving this process. I also found the information put together about reserves, shortfalls, capital projects and the increase for Greenport very helpful. I have never had access to such clear, direct information.

  • Based on researching the actual seneca falls rates for Greenport and Mattituck with Osterponds student count of regular and special ed students, Oysterponds could have saved $637,511over the past three years. Board members of Oysterponds requested again for Greenport to renegotiate our contract…I hope they do before the taxpayers vote this May. The following chart uses actual seneca falls rates for the past three years:

    Greenport ` Mattituck
    2008 $1,509,806.00 $1,381,583.00
    2009 $1,647,012.00 $1,420,940.00
    2010 $1,759,746.00 $1,476,530.00
    $4,916,564.00 $4,279,053.00 $637,511.00

    Yes, there might be extra busing costs, but not $637,511 worth.
    Thom Gray
    Oysterponds School Board Member

  • Hey I thought you quit?

  • The things our children recieve from Greenport can not be measured in dollars ! Just ask them !!!

  • I don’t understand why the idea of sending Oysterpond students to Mattituck is still being brought up. It’s obvious where the Oysterponds community stands on the issue.

  • I don’t understand why the idea of sending Oysterpond students to Mattituck is still being brought up. It’s obvious where the Oysterponds community stands on the issue.

  • I don’t understand why the idea of sending Oysterpond students to Mattituck is still being brought up. It’s obvious where the Oysterponds community stands on the issue.

  • Did Dick leslie give you those figures? The end justifies the means,Dick knows what I mean.

  • No
    and I would be happy to share the data with you or you can verify the #s yourself
    again, the goal here is to save taxpayers $. If we can get Greenport to control their costs or reduce the fees they charged Oysterponds, I would be very happy

  • If your #s are correct(I will check for myself)then 637,511 might be correct,but only if you sent ALL
    the students.At the last special meeting an option of choice was to be offered to the students.Not all of the students would probably choose 1 district and you have made a motion that if you want to stay where you are you can.2 sets of buses,2 districts for you and the admin.to work .I m not sure but there are probably other duplication of services and costs that you did not list.Throwing around LARGE #s gets peoples attention with or without all the facts.With that said what is the cost per student at Oysterponds.By the way, it seems strange to me that you wouldn t try to hold the line on the budget ,but would be happy to see it at a 2% increase.I m sure the taxpayers would rather see no increase!

  • Welcome back Tom, I missed you.

    The bottom line is the Greenport BOE offered Oysterponds a contract, which was a flat rate and would have included an additional discount of 5% if the contract was signed for five years. The tuition would have been significantly below the Seneca Falls rate. The Oysterponds BOE insisted on the Seneca Falls rate, not Greenport, and now Oysterponds wants out of the contract which was negotiated in good faith. The increase seen this year is a direct results of Oysterponds asking for and agreeing to the Seneca Falls rate, which is set by a predetermined formula. Now that you realize you got the fuzzy end of the lolly-pop of your own accord, you do not want to honor that contract.

  • You can not expect ANYONE to renegotiate during litagation. Using your logic Oysterponds school is not a viable school at $30,000 + per student!!! If we are going to talk numbers close the school and tution everyone to Greenport. Elementary prices are about $12,000 per student (1/3 ) of Oysterponds price . The more students Greenport has the lower the Senecca Falls rate. Who would not want their child educated in a BLUE RIBBON SCHOOL? Please provide FULL explanation when you provide a figure!
    Cynthia Goldsmith Agosta

  • ***Sorry about the spelling. ***Litigation, **Tuition**typing too fast- Cynthia Goldsmith-Agosta

  • ***Sorry about the spelling. ***Litigation, **Tuition**typing too fast- Cynthia Goldsmith-Agosta

  • Reneging on the contract with Greenport is just like contracting out to have security system installed in your home and then deciding not pay the contractor once it is installed.

  • I wish to commend the many former OPS students who now attend or formerly attended Greenport HS and their parents for their unanimous support of GHS.

    Seneca Falls rates have only been in use for the past two years. The reported $600,000 savings for three years would have been easily exceeded by the cost of running busses to both the G and M high schools morning and afternoon and most likely special afternoon and evening busses for after school activities at MHS. Also, OPS would most probably have to provide free bussing for all local parochial and other private schools in the immediate area on the North Fork and possibly the South Fork as well.

    In the interest of full disclosure, OPS parents should be made aware Mattituck High School seems to have more than its share of emotionally disturbed students as well as a heavy dose of school cronyism. 100 or fewer OPS students would be a cipher at MHS.

    Presently, the OPS Budget equals $5,500,000. Should the Public wish to effect real savings, they can in accordance with NYS School Education Law request by vote a Public Referendum to tuition all students to the Greenport School District. Sending all the children would cost about $3,500,000. This would leave $2,000,000 of which $500,000 would be necessary to maintain OPS UFSD status. Thus an annual savings of $1,500,000 could be achieved.

  • the reason why the seneca falls formula was used is because the former superintendent could not be bother to give the Correct number of students attending nor could he help
    to negiotate
    why should Greenport subsudize oysterponds?
    mattituck would just slot the kids in –no extra staff or anything-80 kids in a high school of 700 is not even noticable
    80 kids in a hs of 280 is 30% which means more staff
    tom gray does the bidding of another BOE member who did not even vote her OWN CONSCIENCE

  • Why bother wasting $500k to maintain the oysterponds ufsd? Why not just completley combine
    with GPT? You are right, if it saves us that much $, why not?

  • Because there are elitist parents with means who do not want their kids to go to Greenport at all. They want their children to go to OPS elementary and then divide the community by sending their kids to anywhere but GPT. They do not care about saving you money. They want what they want, and expect you to pay for it!!!

  • It would appear that both BOE members Linda & Walter, who negotiated and approved the 5 year contract with GPT are comfortable with giving away $1m away of taxpayers $. Having been in attendance, I heard Gpt say they were willing to give a 5% discount off the Seneca falls rate.
    Then, to blame the contract on the former superintendant, yet if I recall correctly both Walter & Linda voted not to terminate his contract. I guess they enjoyed having him around so they could blame their stupid decisions on someone else

  • Linda and Walter voted no on terminating the former Supes contract not because they like the job he was doing, but because they did not wan to pay him in excess of $70k to sit home, and pay for his health coverage for life.

  • I can’t wait to hear what they say when we all talk about combining the entire North Fork into one district, as it should be: Riverhead to Orient. And I do mean including RIVERHEAD to Orient.

  • nope not true
    I wanted the Superintendent gone but I did not want another district to have the problems we did.
    I wanted the problems to be made public, and to have the former super resign or to acutally have —well under the terms negiotated with the members who voted YES to pay him off WE ARE NOT ALLOWED TO TELL THE PUBLIC REASONS —-we cannot say what if anything he did or did not do–read the separation agreement–that is what I voted against–it is $171,000 not 70K and there is a pay out of 20K every year yes EVERY YEAR until he and his wife die because he does not need our health insurance–he just gets the MONEY
    to not be able to tell the public what went wrong–it stinks–if we had to pay he should have worked this year for his money

    as far as Seneca Falls—and discounts
    that was not on the table 3 years ago—I was not on the BOE until 3 months before the contract was signed. and if there is no contract seneca falls automatically kicks in
    and if the new BOE members had not voted to rescind everything including assigned parking, GHS was open to renegiotating
    the PRIOR contract was extended by the previous BOE presidents (Frost, Tuthill, Webb or whoever)and no one ever figured out that we had fewer kids. I did though.

    we SHOULD pay our own way–subsidizing us is unfair–and I do not want to use our children as pawns to get a lower rate–are we SELLING our kids to the lowest bidder? Do we go into the grocery store and say “hey you need our business so give us a lower rate than greenport residents????

    If it is money then tuition ALL kids out to save a milliion or 2 a year.

  • what do you mean by assigned parking?

  • Health insurance for life was in original employment contract.
    The vote to terminate could not change that. $70k to not pay $20ok next year and to begin improving things sounds like a good investment. Better than $40k in legal fees last year that accomplished nothing

  • They would have been able to terminate his contract if Thom Gray did not publicly chide Dr. Rachlin at a board meeting. There was a clause in the contract that stated the BOE could not publicly ridicule him. So he cost the taxpayers 171 k plus 20 k each year until he and his wife expire according to class of 1967. I’m not sure if I agree with you that that was a good investment.

  • be careful what you wish for…i work in a “regional district”… it is way to big and the quality of education is not the same as it is out there.

  • Does Greenport provide special afternoon and evening busses for Oysterponds students for after school activities?

  • Meg the answer is no and neither does OPS. We formerly had a n early dismissal bus as well as a regular time dismissal bus. But that was stopped as soon as Linda and Walter found out about it when they were reviewing bus schedules.- Pythagorus

  • Quite Neighbor, It is important not to consolidate in order to keep our tax assessment advantage and also to retain title to our two properties in East Marion and Orient – Pythagorus

  • Gray Area – I do not know how you create stories out of wholc cloth. Greenport never offered a 5% discount, whether or not to a fixed price or a Seneca Falls based contract if OPS signed up for 5 years. The offer you refer to took place on the South Fork not the North Fork. – Pythagorus

  • I was educated in NYC…..a really big District……ended up will a Phd and made a good living!
    Big isn’t always bad…..nor is small always good.

  • not true again, there was a percentage of health insurance–and NOT insuracne because he has it in another way–this ia a straight PAY OUT of about 20 grand a years which goes up every year
    If one is negiotating a contract or renegotiating one why not renegotiate that as well????
    And it is not 70 thousand
    it is $95 thousand this year (he does not work for OP now) and $76 not to work next year–was 100K but he decided to work at Wainscott which is against his contract–he was allowed to do so by taking a smaller pay out.
    so it is 20 K or more yearly for probably 20 years=400K
    $171K to NOT WORK
    yeah really smart