Huntington School Board members have approved requests to resign for the purpose of retirement submitted by Jefferson Primary School teachers Kathleen Kraus and Patricia Sweeney and SEARCH program chairperson-teacher Maryann Daly. The three longtime faculty members will be retiring at the end of the school year in June. Trustees took the action during a public meeting this past Monday night in the Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School auditorium.
Huntington School Board members have appointed Christine Hoffman as a probationary English to Speakers of Other Languages teacher, effective February 27. She will be eligible for tenure on February 27, 2021.
Woodhull Intermediate School Principal Traci Roethel was granted tenure by the Huntington School Board during a public meeting on January 9. The tenure appointment is effective February 3.
The Huntington School Board has adopted a proposed district calendar for the 2017/18 school year. Trustees voted unanimously at their January 9 public meeting to approve the plan, which will have school begin on Wednesday, September 6 and finish on Friday, June 22, 2018.
Huntington School Board members voted unanimously to approve an elementary reorganization plan, which will be phased in over the next two years and result in four buildings housing kindergarten through third grade and two intermediate schools enrolling grades 4-6.
Huntington School Board members are considering an elementary grade level building reconfiguration. Superintendent James W. Polansky presented an overview of a plan that would transition into place over a two year period and result in four buildings housing kindergarten through third grade and two intermediate schools enrolling grades 4-6.
Huntington School Board members have voted unanimously to set the 2016/17 tax rate at $229.41 per $100 of assessed valuation. The 1.61 percent increase over last year is identical to last May’s estimate when residents went to the polls and approved the school budget. Trustees took the action during their public meeting this past Monday night in the Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School auditorium.
Huntington School Board members have approved out of town trips for the Blue Devil marching band and the Highsteppers competitive dance team.
The Huntington School District is striving to have its classrooms filled with healthy students and is doing whatever it can to make that goal become reality. Trustees recently readopted administrative regulations designed to implement the district’s wellness policy during the 2016/17 school year.
Huntington School Board members adopted a set of eleven goals for the 2016/17 school year without a dissenting vote. Trustees took the action during their meeting on Monday, August 29 in the Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School auditorium.
The Huntington School Board re-elected Thomas DiGiacomo and Jennifer Hebert to serve as that body’s president and vice-president, respectively, during the 2016/17 school year. Trustees took the action during the Board’s reorganization meeting this past Monday night in the Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School auditorium.
The Huntington School Board will elect its president and vice-president for the new school year and make appointments to various positions, including district clerk and treasurer at a public meeting set for Monday, July 11 at 6 p.m. in the Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School auditorium.
The members of the Huntington School Board are elected by the residents of the community to manage and oversee all aspects of the district’s educational program, personnel, properties and financial affairs. Trustees serve three year terms without any form of compensation. Members develop an annual budget and submit the proposal to voters for approval. They appoint administrators to conduct the day-to-day affairs of the district, faculty to provide instruction and support staff to ensure the smooth operation of the school system.
State Education Law grants school board members the authority to enact the policies and regulations they feel are necessary to fulfill their responsibilities and to provide students with the education they are legally entitled to and deserve. The school board’s oversight responsibilities include the admission of students, instruction, discipline, grading, classification of special education students, appointing and managing all employees, entering into contracts, purchasing, leasing, maintenance of buildings, property, equipment and supplies and every other area of district operation.
School board members meet regularly in executive session to discuss personnel and legal matters and in public to receive reports from officials, discuss policies and attend to the district’s financial and educational affairs. An agenda is published prior public meetings and residents are provided an opportunity to address trustees. Detailed minutes of each meeting are kept by the district clerk.
The school board is entrusted with the ultimate responsibility for the proper education of all young people within the district who are enrolled in the public school system and in safeguarding the financial and material resources provided by residents through the years.
Tom DiGiacomo was elected in May 2015 to serve his second three year term on the Huntington School Board. His fellow trustees chose him as the Board of Education president for the 2016/17 school year.
A 1979 Huntington High School graduate, Mr. DiGiacomo’s family has been involved in the district for three generations. He holds an associate’s degree in business from SUNY Farmingdale and has a professional background in the technology field, providing solutions for businesses ranging in size from small to Fortune 50.
Mr. DiGiacomo’s experience includes project and budget management, finance and implementing technology solutions. As the Northeast regional director of sales for a global technology firm, he was responsible for six regional offices and management of a $100 million budget. He is currently the director of sales for a Long Island based firm that provides the federal government with products and solutions.
Mr. DiGiacomo and his wife, Nancy are the parents of a son in the eleventh grade at Huntington High School. Through the years, Mr. DiGiacomo has regularly attended Huntington School Board meetings, served as an active PTA member and co-chaired the district’s Shared Decision-Making Committee.
Mr. DiGiacomo strives to utilize his background in business and technology solutions, along with a balanced approach to problem solving, to contribute to making the district the finest it can be.
The DiGiacomo family has deep roots in the community. Mr. DiGiacomo’s father, Al, was a member of Huntington High School’s Class of 1941. Al DiGiacomo was the architect that designed the replacement for Roosevelt School on Lowndes Avenue. The new building was eventually named Huntington Elementary School and today serves the district as Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School.
During his time as a trustee, Mr. DiGiacomo has been a member of the district’s audit and policy committees. He has also helped rejuvenate the Huntington Alumni Association and serves as the organization’s president.
Jennifer Hebert was elected in May 2014 to serve her second three-year term on the Huntington School Board. Her fellow trustees elected her as vice president of the Board of Education in each of the past three years. She has an extensive background in education as a teacher and parent volunteer.
Mrs. Hebert and her husband Jamie have lived in Huntington for 19 years. Together they have two sons attending district schools; a seventh grader at J. Taylor Finley Middle School and a junior at Huntington High School. Their third son is a freshman at Johns Hopkins University.
A Long Island native, Mrs. Hebert graduated from the East Williston School District in 1986. She attended Tufts University in Boston, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1990 and a Master of Arts in Teaching degree in 1991.
Prior to moving back to Long Island from New England, Mrs. Hebert worked as a public school kindergarten teacher in Massachusetts for several years. She is currently the director of the pre-school program at St. John’s Nursery School in Huntington village. She has devoted countless volunteer hours to the Huntington School District as a PTA president and treasurer.
Mrs. Hebert has also served on the district’s Long Range Planning Committee and regularly attended Board of Education meetings prior to her election. As a trustee, she has served on the district’s audit committee.
Mrs. Hebert is widely known as a creative thinker who enjoys learning about all aspects of the district and its educational program and listening to all sides of every issue. She is particularly passionate about public school education and believes the learning experience offered to Huntington students should be among the finest in the nation.
Christine Biernacki was elected to a three year term on the Huntington School Board in May 2015. She is a longtime volunteer in the Huntington School District, including serving as the PTA Council’s president.
Raised in Huntington, Mrs. Biernacki attended school in South Huntington. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from the University of Connecticut and a Juris Doctor from the Hofstra University School of Law. She is a partner in a New York City law firm.
Mrs. Biernacki and her husband, who is a 1983 graduate of Huntington High School, live with their two children in Halesite. Their daughter is an eighth grader at J. Taylor Finley Middle School and their son is a sixth grader at Woodhull Intermediate School.
Over the years, Mrs. Biernacki has served on the district Safety and Shared Decision Making Committees and on the Committee for Special Education.
Mrs. Biernacki’s service to the community’s children predates the start of her own family. She served president of the Huntington Sanctuary Project’s advisory board. Mrs. Biernacki and her husband offered their house as a host home for Sanctuary, opening their doors to runaway youth so that the families could participate in mediation to resolve their issues and bring the youngster home.
Mrs. Biernacki has also served as president of the Town of Huntington’s Youth Bureau Board. She was recognized for her work with runaway and homeless youth by the Association of New York State Youth Bureaus and the Empire State Coalition of Youth and Family Services.
A longtime attendee of Huntington School Board meetings, forums and conferences, Mrs. Biernacki has become well versed in many education issues. She has advocated for reforms in school aid, teacher evaluation and special education, among other areas. She comes from a family filled with educators and strives to work in a manner that will honor that tradition.
William P. Dwyer was first elected to the Huntington School Board in May 2008. His fellow trustees selected him to serve as the Board of Education president on three separate occasions. After leaving the Board for two years, he was again elected in May 2013 and May 2016 for three-year terms.
Mr. Dwyer and his wife Karen are the parents of three sons; Ethan, a freshman at Northeastern University, Brendan, a sophomore at SUNY Old Westbury and Bradley, a Syracuse University graduate.
Mr. Dwyer, who grew up in Middlebury, Connecticut, earned a B.S. degree in mathematics at Providence College and a second B.S. degree in mechanical engineering at Washington University in St. Louis. He obtained a Master of Science degree in aeronautics and astronautics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Widely known as Bill, Mr. Dwyer worked for Northrop Grumman for nine years, performing aerodynamic design and analysis using computational fluid dynamics and wind tunnel testing with six of those years spent working in southern California and three in Bethpage.
In his time with Northrop Grumman, Mr. Dwyer rose from an entry level engineer position to that of group leader, winning several NASA contracts for aerodynamic design tasks on the next generation supersonic commercial airplane.
Mr. Dwyer left the aerospace industry to join a health publishing company in New York City, assuming responsibility for its networking, website and communications infrastructure, eventually rising to the post of vice-president of operations. After eight years he decided to start his own publishing company, which focused on producing patient education materials to aid in chronic disease management and developing unique community outreach programs.
Mr. Dwyer is currently employed as an account executive for an educational technology company based in Hauppauge, working with school districts throughout the Northeast to help them maximize their investment in software to benefit their operations.
As a participating member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians and the Huntington Village Lacrosse Club, Mr. Dwyer has been active in the community. In his free time, he enjoys family outings to the games of New York’s professional sports teams.
Bari Fehrs was re-elected in May 2016 to serve a second three-year term on the Huntington School Board. At the time of her initial election as a trustee, she was serving her third year as the district’s PTA Council president.
A 25-year resident of Huntington, Ms. Fehrs earned a Bachelor of Arts degree at New York Institute of Technology. A past president of the Southdown Primary School and J. Taylor Finley Middle School PTAs, she has been involved in the Huntington School District for more than a decade.
Prior to her election, Ms. Fehrs attended school board meetings for nine years. She has been a member of the district’s Comprehensive Health Advisory Committee, District Shared Decision Making Committee and District Safety Committee and has volunteered with the Booster Club.
Ms. Fehrs takes pride in being well-versed on local, state and national educational issues. She has traveled to Albany to fight for Huntington’s fair share of state aid and met with legislators to advocate for the district. She can frequently be found attending the district’s academic, co-curricular and extracurricular events and has volunteered many hours of her free time with the Huntington Booster Club.
Employed by a local medical practice, Ms. Fehrs leads an active lifestyle and enjoys running and reading in her free time. She has a daughter who is currently a Huntington High School sophomore and two sons who are district graduates and now attending college.
Xavier Palacios was elected to a second term on the Huntington School Board in May 2015. He has enjoyed a long association with the district.
A member of Huntington High School’s Class of 1988, Mr. Palacios earned a Bachelor of Arts degree at Columbia University and a Juris Doctor at Boston University’s School of Law. He is the owner and managing partner of a Mineola-based law firm.
Mr. Palacios and his wife, Laura have three children, including a daughter who was a member of Huntington’s Class of 2016 and who is now a University of Pennsylvania freshman and two daughters at Flower Hill Primary School; a first grader and a third grader, both in dual language classes.
In 2008, Mr. Palacios purchased and renovated a distressed property in Huntington Station where he established a satellite law office along with a community revitalization non-profit organization.
Mentoring has been a priority throughout Mr. Palacios’ life. At Columbia, he taught SAT prep and biology courses to inner city students. He has continued mentoring young people and families in the community and encouraged parents to be actively involved in their child’s education. He has been recognized for his work in the community and his efforts to strengthen opportunities for young people.
Mr. Palacios volunteered in each of the past two years to serve as the high school mock trial team’s legal advisor, training students in the art of courtroom skills and strategies. He has spent many hours working behind the scenes with coaches and athletes to help spur participation and promote excellence in the Blue Devil athletic program.
During his time on the Huntington School Board, Mr. Palacios has strived to be a problem-solver and to use his legal expertise to contribute to solutions regarding pressing issues facing students, teachers and taxpayers.
Emily Rogan was re-elected to the Huntington School Board in May 2015 and is serving her fourth three-year term.
An award winning journalist, Mrs. Rogan grew up in the community and graduated from Huntington High School in 1983. She went on to earn a Bachelor of Arts at Cornell University and a Master of Arts at New York University.
Mrs. Rogan moved back to Huntington from New York City with her husband Bob (Huntington Class of 1979) 19 years ago. Together they have a son Henry, who is a junior at Kenyon College and a daughter Julia, a junior at Huntington High School.
Prior to winning her first term on the Huntington School Board in May 2006, Mrs. Rogan was active in the school community for many years, serving on various district-wide committees and participating in building level PTA organizations. A member of the district’s Comprehensive Health Advisory Committee and the Lowndes Avenue Task Force, she is passionate about education in general and particularly public education, and firmly believes in the benefits it reaps for children.
Selected four separate times by her fellow trustees to serve as the Board of Education’s president, Mrs. Rogan has an especially fierce passion for the Huntington School District and a particular interest in the health and wellness of all students.
Mrs. Rogan enjoys visiting schools across the district and attending academic and co-curricular events, where she regularly speaks with students, teachers and parents.
Professionally, Mrs. Rogan is a freelance writer, frequently authoring articles for newspapers and magazines about subjects affecting children and families. The fourth term trustee had an essay published in the book, “Fits Starts and Matters of the Heart - 28 True Stories of Love, Loss and Everything in Between.” It is a collection of works by writers from Freelance Success, an online professional writer’s organization that counts Mrs. Rogan as one of its members.
Before becoming a mother, Mrs. Rogan worked for the CBS News show 48 Hours. She also worked for many years for Junior Achievement of New York, a non-profit organization that focuses on education and mentoring.
In her free time Mrs. Rogan enjoy running, yoga and playing golf and is also an avid reader, known to keep a pile of books nearby. She has completed Tough Mudder New England, a challenging event that required participants to run ten miles up-and down a Vermont mountain and overcome 25 military-type obstacles along the way.
All public session meetings start at 7:30 p.m. and are held in the Adam Spector Auditorium at Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School, except for the August* meetings which start at 7 p.m.
July 11 (Reorganization and Regular Meeting)
*August 7, 28
September 11, 25
For more information, please contact Joanne Miranda, District Clerk.