We first were made aware of the dire state of City of Glen Cove schools in October 2018, when a student told us that she and others were evacuated from the high school library because part of the ceiling fell down. What was worse was that she didn’t appear to be surprised. The students were used to it, she said, because the ceiling tiles fell all the time, and not just in the library.
Seeing wires and plumbing visible because the tiles weren’t replaced didn’t surprise her either. What was upsetting, she said, was that the floors were often damp from condensation, causing one student to fall down a set of stairs.
The district would not comment on whether the student’s accounts were accurate. Instead, we received a statement with assurances that the buildings were maintained to ensure all students’ safety.
Now the City of Glen Cove School District is putting up an $84.6 million bond in the hope of repairing its aging schools. The proposed bond was announced within days after the Herald’s 2018 reporting.
Photographs followed that reporting, confirming that the schools were indeed in need of repairs. The images showed a flooded parking lot at Connolly Elementary School, which the superintendent said students ice-skate on in the winter. There were leaky windows that no longer open, and stains on the ceilings and holes too. Missing bricks from the exteriors of buildings and crumbing walkways and parking lots were also shown.
Classroom doors, which are old, can only be locked from the outside, district officials said. The schools need new doors that will lock from the inside for security. District officials pointed out that social studies teacher Scott Beigel, from Long Island, was one of 17 people killed while trying to lock a classroom door from the outside at Marjory Douglas Stoneman High School in the Parkland, Fla., massacre last year.
Glen Cove schools are old, with one dating back to 1911. We agree that the schools need to be repaired and renovated to give Glen Cove children the education that they deserve.
The bond is estimated to cost an average $500,000 Glen Cove home $36.53 per month, or $438.36 per year. District officials said they are hopeful that the state will pick up one-third the cost of the bond, and the district, they said, will receive about $425,000 in state grant funds.
We encourage Glen Cove voters to vote “yes” for the bond on March 12.