Monday, December 04, 2006

SUMMER POLICE CAMP GRAD HIRED AS POLICE OFFICER-- RESIDENTS SPEAK OUT FOR SAT PREP CAMP

The Greenburgh Town Board appointed Herman Killebrew as an entry level police officer at the Greenburgh Town Board meeting on Monday evening. Officer Killebrew is the first graduate of the Police Summer Youth Camp to be appointed a police officer. The camp has provided young people with an opportunity to learn about policing and law enforcement during the summer mnths. At the our budget hearing that the Town Board held on Monday evening many residents of Greenburgh supported the proposed SAT/college prep summer camp. Who knows? One of the SAT summer camp graduates may one day win a Nobel Prize or become a corporate leader!
The Town Board will vote on a budget on December 13th.

The Town Board also approved a resolution urging the State Legislature not to close the Community Hospital at Dobbs Ferry. The vote was unanimous!

The Greenburgh Town Board will meet at work session on Tuesday at 4 PM to discuss library construction bids.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

I think it is great program. it will open up a lawsuit to force the villages to pay for the police department in addition to the parks -- yeah!!!


Lets see, we have the summer program, swat team, a few others if we look hard and some judge will say it it a town wide activity.

Anonymous said...

A great story. Thank you Chief Kapica, Councilwoman Barnes and Supervisor Feiner for your work establishing this camp. I hope that the SAT camp, if established, will also produce good results for our youth.

Anonymous said...

I continue to be dismayed that the Town is going to spend over $4300 per student to attend a three week SAT prep course, and it is only going to benefit 12 students who are too old to be in Camp anyway. These students/children/not campers would benefit from internships with Town administrators.

Twelve sessions at Kaplan, according to Kaplan's website, is around $1000. For $53000, the Town could send 50 Juniors to Kaplan's course. And Kaplan has a guarantee.

Another alternative: WCC's classes run around $600 to $800, depending on the number of credits. Why not give HS students entering their senior year an opportunity to take one summer class at WCC [WCC can identify those that are appropriate] and have an opportunity to get additional help from a prof. to keep up with the work, and then pay for them to take the Kaplan course or get the Kaplan course into the schools to reach more students? They will have real college credits to show on their college applications.

The SAT is in the Fall, so most test strategies students are taught in the summer will be lost by the time the test is taken.

Or, for $53k, the Town could hire a test coach for their juniors/seniors to individually analyze each student's test taking abilities and offer individualized tutoring. This would be of greater benefit to MORE children than the lucky dozen who get to go to "Camp."

Sure sound fishy to me said...

Feiner's SAT/Biz camp proposal raises so many questions that never got answered at last night's budget hearing that it makes you wonder whether, from Feiner's perspective, this was nothing more than yet another of his public relations gimmicks - this one calculated to pander to the parents of the town's low income minority kids who could probably really use a program like this.

All Feiner seems to want to do is congratulate himself for having made the proposal and congratulate the parents who showed up several months ago with their kids to support it.

And how could they not show up? As we learned last night, to rally support for the proposal, they were told the limited number of available spaces would all be offered that night on a "first come-first serve" basis. No wonder kids supposedly walked to town hall in droves that night. But since the town had never approved any such thing, Feiner should be ashamed of himself for trying to garner "grassroots support" in that manner.

That's like offering a limited number of winning lottery tickets to anyone who shows up at a Feiner political rally. If you ask me, that's a pretty disgusting way to take political advantage of low income minority kids and their families. Whoever said Feiner likes to use kids as props was right on the money.

But none of this seems to matter to Feiner. He knew the program had problems. He said so himself. But all he seemed interested in doing last night was blaming the town council for being against these low income minority kids -- and thereby pandering to their parents.

Greenburgh hardworking families deserve so much better than this.

Paul Feiner said...

Dear Sounds Fishy: The SAT Camp is more than a camp that offers SAT preparation. The camp will also offer participants other forms of help: essay writing (college admissions), trips to local colleges, meetings with admissions officials, etc..
You indicated in your e mail that I was blaming the Town Council for being against low income kids. I didn't even mention the Town Council last night.

Still sounds fishy said...

Dear Mr. Feiner:

Your explanation leaves me more troubled than ever. You say the "camp" is more than SAT prep, because it includes essay writing (college admissions), trips to local colleges, and meetings with admissions officials, etc. The problem is that these other things you mention all sound like what a school district's guidance department does. It sure doesn't sound like what a town government does. So what you want to tax us for is what we already pay our school taxes for (and they're high enough already thanks), and if our school districts throughout the town don't think in their professional judgment that this additional program is needed, why are you pushing so hard to do it? It just sounds very fishy, like maybe you want that very nice lady to have a town-paid job this summer.

And to make things worse, even if the town decided to get into the business of educating kids for college, you are not a board of education and you don't employ any school administrators and other educational professionals who could tell us whether we're getting our money's worth or whether this is just another of your politics-driven spending projects.

So, if you really believe this program is so worthwhile educationally, why not first present it to the school districts? Before you ask us town taxpayers to pay for it, shouldn't you at least show us that the town's many school districts agree with you that it's a good idea, but that it only makes sense if the town does it? How do we know there aren't other programs out there already provide this service to low income kids in our community?

And don't kid yourself, Mr. Feiner, all those speeches you made last night about how this program must be funded or else low income kids this summer with nothing better to do might find themselves getting arrested -- yes, you really said that -- sure looked to me like you were blaming the town council for being against low income kids. In fact, what you did was far worse than that.

Anonymous said...

I'm not saying that it sounds fishy or not, but I do fully agree that the SAT Camp, and even the Business Camp, clearly belong with the school systems, not municipal government.

Anonymous said...

i agree that the schools need to handle this, not the town

if there's money floating around in the town budget, use it to hire a new DPW manager - someone with an MBA and an organizational systems background

Anonymous said...

I don't have a preference: school or town. My concern is that we provide kids with opportunities to excel.

Anonymous said...

Is Hastings High School in or near unincorporated Greenburgh? How much of the police department is charged to the town entire budget?

From todays Journal News

DOBBS FERRY - A college student from Yonkers suspected of selling drugs near Hastings High School was arrested following an investigation that also led to the recovery of a stolen handgun, police said yesterday.

Andrew Birkenfeld, 21, of 2 Greenvale Ave. was arrested in a parking lot at Mercy College on Monday night, police said, after he made the last of three cocaine sales to an undercover officer with the Greenburgh Drug and Alcohol Task Force.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Feiner: Please be aware that the help the future college applicants need to get into college will not be found in the "SAT Camp," even if the program includes more than test coaching. The colleges are looking for AUTHENTIC experiences that contribute to a student's preparadeness for the college experience. The students need to be able to respond to, "So, what did you do last summer?" with a better response than "I attended an SAT camp." These students need experiences that give them something to talk about, i.e., the internships with the Town where they have solid AUTHENTIC experiences, and they are able to document their abilities for their college applications and interviews.

An example would be planning and actually completing a community project, such as a literacy center at one of the Town Parks (in the absence of a library in the near future, this would a good idea). Or, a program to demonstrate how parents can read to their children at home. One interesting project occurred in a hospital, where students demonstrated to ER patients how to read a prescription bottle. The planning, instituting and documentation of these types of projects teaches future college students all those skills they will need for an SAT test, as well as life skills that will serve them well in the future.

Colleges are looking at more than SAT scores, and these types of opportunities for students create the type of real world experiences that the colleges want to see. It's great for the community, too.