Area Schools Closed Again Friday

Students in Wanagh, Seaford and Levittown districts to miss classes for fifth straight day Friday following damage caused by Superstorm Sandy.

Wantagh, Seaford and Levittown district officials announced Thursday that schools will be closed Friday for a fifth straight day following damage suffered by Superstorm Sandy.

The school closings Friday will mean students in the Wantagh, Seaford and Levittown districts will have been out of classes for an entire week. Both the Wantagh and Seaford superintendents expressed hope that schools will be able to reopen Monday if power is restored. As of mid Thursday afternoon, the Long Island Power Authority was reporting more than 12,000 outages in the Wantagh-Seaford area.

Seaford Superintendent of Schools Brian Conboy said that in addition to problems powering the school buildings, the district’s website has also been down making communication a challenge. He also emphasized that districts are concerned about running buses with few traffic signals working.

Goldberg said that in addition to school being closed Friday, all previously scheduled athletic games and practices this weekend have been cancelled. The SAT that was to be offered in Wantagh Saturday is also postponed pending notification from the College Board. 

“It is my hope that within the next few days power will return, however, LIPA is still unable to predict when our electricity will be restored,” said Wantagh Acting Superintendent Maureen Goldberg in a message addressed to district parents. “Please know that I will regularly communicate with you as we all continue to deal with the aftermath of this unprecedented storm.”


Barbara See November 01, 2012 at 09:49 PM
Do you know about the SAT in Seaford this Saturday?
Andrew Coen November 01, 2012 at 10:19 PM
It was not mentioned to me but I would imagine there is a good chance it is postponed just like in Wantagh. I will let you know if I find out for certain.
Lorraine DeVita November 02, 2012 at 12:34 AM
Sign posted at the Manor Admin Wing door Board meeting NOV 1st @ 6:30 pm Board will adjourn to executive session to assess the harbor school condition- Meeting will resume @ 7;30 pm in the Harbor All purpose room. Ok Manor = no lights but sign is still finctioning yet apparently no one knows to work the thing to inform people. Harbor several of us drive down in the pitch black- no cars in any lots, no meeting! drive to HS which is lite up like an xmas tree- no access in front, drive around to anita lane gate. gate locked SO will somebody explain: A)WHERE was the meeting? B) If cancelled why no notice posted C) WHAT would possess someone to assess the harbor school inthe pitch dark knowing full well there is NO ELECTRICTY ? There is definitely a total lack of communication. as and for the School districts website. PERHAPS a Battery back up or hosted off site mighte be prudent going forward as well investing in a generator for the communications hub where ever THAT is located to supply power for the Telecom system AND the SERVERS? Is that too much to ask a measley 10k would have taken care of all of this but i know they keep saying we have NO money.. YEAH RIGHT! - no money for an extra k teacher , no money no money.... until its either band or sports. PRIORITIES PEOPLE >>>>> and along with no money we have NO communication - and NO leadership!
Lorraine DeVita November 02, 2012 at 12:39 AM
This SD expects the community to support it and it does YET in a time when people are without power, without heat and without communication you would think when they have a fully lite HS they would insure that the community had access to atleast charge a laptop or phone and something hot to eat? A SAFE HAVEN for this community that is in crisis, a community that continualy supports the SD and its students, is not and was not offered by this leadership. Someobdy blew it big time and ALL should be held equaly repsonsible. This is an insult to this community. But we had football practice!
Lorraine DeVita November 02, 2012 at 01:00 AM
"Seaford Superintendent of Schools Brian Conboy said that in addition to problems powering the school buildings...He also emphasized that districts are concerned about running buses with few traffic signals working." So explain to ME and the REST of Community What would possess you to ALLOW teenagers to Drive or ask their parents to drive them to FOOTBALL PRACTICE. Where is YOUR COMMON SENSE and concern for THEIR SAFETY with the traffic lights? and if there is claim there was no FORMAL football practice EXPLAIN to me why kids were waiting to be picked up in full uniform, helmets & pads slung on shoulders as OTHER older car driving players picked them up? A Viking FOOTBALL HALLOWEEN PARTY? or a SECRET unsanctioned scrimmage/practice?
Matthew Provenzano November 02, 2012 at 04:33 AM
You can't battery backup a server; it doesn't work that way. The way these large infrastructure servers work is that they do have backups, so that if they to shut down they can save data so nothing is corrupted. There's no way to keep something that power demanding online with just a back-up generator. And having an off-site web interface doesn't change the fact that people without power and/or cable still can't access it.
Matthew Provenzano November 02, 2012 at 04:42 AM
I totally agree on the football point, but I can guarantee attendance was the choice of the students--no one can be forced in a natural disaster like this. (It'll be moot if gas runs out) But still, I don't know how much you expect out of a BOE that can't communicate with its homeowners. Until power, cable, and gasoline are restored to full capacity there is no way the communication you expect will come. Who do you expect to work this HS Clinic with closed roads and when people can't communicate about it? How would one organize without any means of communication? I think in a crisis like this people are not in the least bit concerned as to how their BOE isn't responding in the proper manner. LIPA has responded accordingly, as well as local and state municipalities. And the community has each other. Who gives a damn about what the school is doing at the present?
Lorraine DeVita November 02, 2012 at 12:03 PM
Mathew, You are correct Mathew a battery back up ONLY allows the equipment to power down slowly to protect against corruption HOWEVER, a battery back up Mathew and a generator are TWO entirly different pieces of equipment .While the BBU/UPS allows the equipmtent to power down a Generator POWERS the equipment . I have designed many LARGE and small data centers ALL with Battery back ups and all with secondary power sources. . So while i respect your input on most matters, you are slightly out of your league on this matter. ALSO Mathew, Hosting OFF site would allow this district to provide CURRENT information on their website that people COULD access via their smart phones so while they may not have internet accesss from cablevison or verizon etc. they do have some cell service.It would also allow the accesss from cell service to update and change information in a timely fashion ..A generator would also allow the telcom equipment to function normaly and give the district the availability to leave a general announcement in a voice mail box specifically designed to GIVE information again which can be changed remotely via cell if neccessary by a district employee. Parents or residents could call into the system and hear current updates & announcements. This is all routine and done everyday and actually Mathew is OLD technology!
Lorraine DeVita November 02, 2012 at 12:09 PM
With the generator i have in my home i was able to not only power up 2 frdges a freezer and multiple lights and small appliances i was also able to hook up a 37 in flat screen, my routers,3 laptops, verizons interface as well as my FIOS box allowing me TV,Internet and regular phone service and still have 85% of my capacity left over. and while it is a gas hog it does function well. There are also MANY generators that provide Whole house service and are powered by the same Natural GAS that is used in home heating it is a permanant installation and automatically switches when your power goes out MANY large and medium size business have something similiar - Did you know Mathew that places like Costco and BJ's by LAW are required to have generators to provide power for their food safety? Battery back up Mathew are a staple as are generators and going forward we need to invest in these vital pieces of equipment for the district. The COST would be WELL worth the investment and would allow for dissemination of information in a timely and current fashion.Something Mathew we DONT have ..and something we DO need ..
Lorraine DeVita November 02, 2012 at 12:43 PM
The School mathew is proported to be the HEART of the community. When you have a HS WITH power, you open the doors to residents in crisis, providing service to charge phones/laptops, offer a hot meal run by volunteers , allow people to utilize the shower facilites, even provide moives or activites for the smaller kids, a place to refridg meds for seniors etc. There is A LOT this district could do to NOTIFY the community the LEAST of which is to utilize those bill boards on the Manor and HS which are running but give NO information. Shall i LIST ALL the ways they could be helping this community because they are NUMEROUS? This is their JOB to educate and INFORM. insure the pupils are safe and in a time of crisis provide a safe haven for many if possible. ONE organizes and prepares BEFORE the crisis NOT AFTER ONCE again this district was caught with its pants down because it is programed to be REACTIVE not PROACTIVE. You wil find when you go into the world Mathew people get FIRED for not being prepared and not exploring all the options and contingecies and for not having a sound plan in place. While NO plan is perfect when a crisis hits at the very least a clear and concise plan allows for mulitple contingencies so parts can be implemented as conditions improve. Winging it and LUCK will only get you so far.
Lorraine DeVita November 02, 2012 at 12:52 PM
Mathew if we are communicating here , if the football players are notifed of practice(which i would be interested in knowing if it was sanctioned and did not violate any rules) If Facebook is up and running, if cell service is working , if some one knows how to WRITE on a peice of poster board and post a sign on the school the library, the banks, the local stores. if twitter works,last resort a BULL HORN WORKS. you get the word out. There are no excuses. NONE. We are BIG on EXCUSES and very lacking in solutions. Your a bright kid i can imagine you, if given the impetus, could come up with a myriad of ways to communicate effectively ...
Lorraine DeVita November 02, 2012 at 01:03 PM
The COACH The AD and the Superientendent were irresponsible Mathew. did they NOT realize the Traffic lights were out, that GAS is at a premium? Yuo dont place a child in jeopardy to insure a winning football season.. and while i can appreciate it might have been voluntary, What 16-18 yr old would chose staying home over going to football practice. Parents would prbably have felt torn .. it is not a good postion to put anyone in. and not imho a sound SAFE decision onthe part of the atheletic department and the district leadership.
Maddie's momma November 02, 2012 at 03:35 PM
just got a message from SD. Systems for communication are up and running again. All schools are structurally ok. Power at all except Harbor. Re: re-opening, considerations include gas, lack of traffic signals, road conditions in Harbor area. Said they will continue to provide info as well as contingency plan for Habor kids.
DiverDown November 02, 2012 at 05:38 PM
As usual, hindsight is 20-20. I can only imagine the outcry if any of the recent school budget proposals had included the several thousand dollars that would have been required for one of those permanantly installed, automatic, natural gas generators... "What do they need that for? After all, when was the last time the school had any kind of long-term power outage?" "What a waste of money for something they might need once in a generation. They must go looking for ways to waste money" Don't even try telling me I'm way off base.
Fred Sanford November 02, 2012 at 05:55 PM
Lorraine, I give you credit for your unbelievable tenacity on these blogs for such a long time. Your messages are generally on point and no exception here. Most of us are afraid to speak out because we fear retribution for our children by the administration. This is a union machine. Conboy is already hedging on school next week even though the schools are powered. Traffic lights and gas are his extreme barriers to success as if mankind has been at the mercy of these things for thousands of years. Yet football is ok. This Administration is listless, excuses are what they do best. They see problems as things to be avoided through passivity instead of met head on. They sat on their butts for years on the Seaford Avenue and watch an entire real estate cycle pas them by and now getting a fraction of what they would have only 4 years ago. There is no true leadership, just highly paid bureaucrats getting full time pay for part time jobs. Just letting victimization rule the day and never big or bold decisions. Its very sad for the kids and if ever get true leadership in higher places, a voucher system would have everyone running to the private education sector where they do so much more for so much less...and don't even complain... I give you credit for staying after it, it seems like a pretty big machine to be fighting. I'm glad people like you have the patience and fortitude to keep up the fight.
Lorraine DeVita November 02, 2012 at 06:00 PM
@ diver down, with the current mentality , i agree, however, this district needs to be proactive, as you know in any business there is always a disaster recovery plan with contingecies and redundancies and while most are hardly ever used it is common sense to BE PREPAREd then to have regrets and hindsight. There are several steps that could have been undertaken to avoid some issues, ONE was to call the Telecom Vendor and seek alternatives including local & Ld carrier services in the short haul. . Also most telecom vendors will make an assesment and offer other viable options if asked. As well all local employees should have been called in on saturday and backed up EVERY drive to preserve data. As well all equipment should have been unplugged, Shall i go on. These are ALL precautionary common steps that most businesses have developed step by step. Hind sight is one thing. Common sense to protect your assets and being able to communicate are another.
Lorraine DeVita November 02, 2012 at 06:17 PM
@ Fred, TY- and your right many dont speak out because they are afraid and rightly so of retribution, others do not really grasp the concept that having a voice can make a difference. My problem with this district is one of COMMON SENSE & logic or lack there of. While we have MANY well educated people employed in this district we seem to suffer greatly from a LACK of people with common sense and logic. Which unfortunately effects not only our escalating taxes but our students education as well. Whats more troubling, it is NOT only in Seaford (although at times it seems we are at the top of the DUH list ) This is pandemic across all lines of public education. Highly educated but absolutely no knowledge(clue) on running as a friend says 'LEAN". which is broadly based on the very simple principals of common sense and logic. Fred one thing my husband says i do better then anyone else on this planet I am a relentless NAG and do not suffer fools lightly.


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