Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Board Votes To Close Meagher School

Without holding a significant public forum as promised, the School Board voted 6 to 3 to close Meagher School earlier this evening. It might interest the public to know that no Aldermen showed up at the meeting. Other than myself, none of the candidates for Mayor showed up. I find that disgraceful.

Where was Bill Reynolds? Meagher is in his ward. Where was Clement? Polacco? Gallo? Turco-Levin? None of them showed up to fight for Meagher School.

For those interested, the following people on the Board voted to close Meagher: Uhl, Coston, Childs, McCoy, Farrell, and Shaughnessy. There were 2 no votes and 1 abstention. Of all the members, the one who pushed to the hardest was Chris Farrell.

The two members who voted no and the abstention are up for election this May. The only one of the "yes" votes up for election is Reverend Childs. Obviously, I would like to see him defeated. When Farrell runs in 2012, I very much want to see him defeated.

Regardless, Meagher School is coming to an end. It will either sit and rot, or the Board will sell Crown Street and move its offices into the Meagher Building. It is a sad day in Kingston.


Andi Turco-Levin said...

We had a Finance Committee meeting at City Hall which began at 6:30. My first obligation is to the position I was elected to serve. I would have been there otherwise.
The only alderman who was absent from our meeting was the 9th Ward Alderman, I thought he was at the school board meeting, apparently not.

Lou said...

There goes another neighoborhood school down the drain. Wait until the effect it will have in the area by closing. I remember I think in the late 1990's this may have come up about closing Meagher. And someone ran for the board and won who wanted to keep the school open. Not sure if that is so, but I recall a few conversations with the board member about the school at the time about Meagher.

If the building is in such bad shape. Then admin offices should not move there either.

Not surprised that all Alderpersons did not show up. But after reading his blog titled "Walkable Schools" dated March 8 2011, I thought atleast Alderman Bill Reynolds would have been there. Just another reason for term limits. But that is another can of worms, pro and con.

Anonymous said...

In all fairness, Clement and Reynolds co-authored a recent op-ed piece for the Kingston Times advocating for Meagher and Sophie Finn, and Clement spoke at the same school board meeting a few weeks ago that you addressed.

Sad decision. Sad day.

Anonymous said...

I think you owe alderwoman Andi Turco-Levin an apology. Please read her blog at
She seems to feel the same way you do, and your blog implies differently. I, too, feel that it was the wrong decision to close Meaghar, but obviously, the public has no say. (think "Pike Plan).

Ralph Mitchell said...

This is Evidence of why School Board member elections should move from May to Election Day in November. Everybody knows a small group of school district voters continues to sponsor and vote for board members who are ultimately elected and control the board independent of the wishes of the local taxpayers and parents. My observation is that a majority of local Kingston taxpayers would want to close an outlying school such as Zena School before closing the inner city Meagher School. Also, a majority of taxpayers want to revert to elementary schools aligned by grades K to 6 instead of K to 5. Also, a majority of taxpayers want the school board to eliminate teacher step increases for longevity and coursework, as a means to counteract the Triborough Amendment and prevent local school tax increases. Let's move the school board member elections from May to November so the majority of school district citizens will have the time and opportunity to vote for people who will give us true representation.

Anonymous said...

Well when there is a new Mayor, I hope he\she gets rid of DPW Schupp. This guy cannot manage. All employees take vacation all during the year, so maybe when it snows we should stop plowing the streets as there may be employees on vacation.

Anonymous said...

It should be noted that the billing for the meeting was that the planning committee would be making their recommendation, not that the school board would be voting on the closing of a school. Considering that the planning committee was supposed to make their recommendation at the meeting last month and postponed it to last night, I'm not surprised that not many people showed up. Even those of us who did show up last night were surprised that it went to vote so quickly. Now that the decision is made, can it be appealed?

Richard T. Cahill Jr. said...

The Alderman could have asked someone to appear on their behalf at the Board meeting. That is a common thing done by elected officials.

If this had occurred when I was an Alderman, I guarantee you someone would have been at that meeting reading a written statement from me into the record.

Lou said...

Ok, let start here. Thanks to Alderwoman Levin for letting us know about the Common Council Finance Committee meeting at City Hall at the same time. After checking the City of Kingston web site I also see Alderman Reynolds is on the same committee. For that I give a half apology to Alderman Reynolds based on my earlier comment. Why you may ask? Even though he has been elected to represent his ward, this is also an issue of long term concern to the health of the area. I am sure Alderman Reynolds has spoken to members of the board and did all his homework, or atleast he did I hope. I would excuse him for missing the committee meeting to attend the school board meeting. Hence the half apology. Alderman Reynolds please accept. thanks lou

Now, your turn. As one of your supporters, I would have thought you would have known about the committee meeting being held on the same night and mentioned that in your blog. Still no excuse for no elected city officials to attend and comment. Aldermen who were not at the committee meeting could have and should have attended the board meeting. Oh, I forgot. Maybe they were chasing cats and checking intersections for traffic lights and stop signs. "SCARASM OFF"

I was not at the meeting. Was it well attended by the parents and residents of the neighborhood who supported keeping the school open? I do know that the agenda for scheduled meetings of the board are published ahead of time. And unless this was a last minute addition to the agenda it would have been known. But unitl I was involved with the goings on in the district, I had to find out on my own about the agenda being published ahead of time.

The closing of another neighborhood school in the City of Kingston is a sad day for the area.

Anonymous said...

Schupp is saying he can't get the yard waste picked up because of the employees vacations because Shupp wants the public to get upset that the employees have vacation time. This will motivate the public to call for him to take the benefits away from the employees.Shupp is a snake in the grass. Shupp tells his employees that he is on their side and stabs them in the back when they are not looking.