2004-10-29 / Community

Beachcomber

The following statement was issued by the Department of Education in response to last week’s story about a book being used at the Channel Academy for Research at Beach Channel High School. The response, which came too late for publication in that issue, was issued by Region Five superintendent Kathleen Cashin. “Books that are used in middle schools go through an extensive review process that assesses their instructional value and age appropriateness. “This book was approved for middle school use.  At the same time, I appreciate the efforts of the parents who reached out to me about the matter: it reflects their strong commitment to and involvement in their children’s education.  As in all cases, if a parent is not comfortable with a book to be read by their child, the school can make accommodations for the child to read a comparable text and in this case we are making those accommodations.”

 

Next Tuesday is Election Day. We urge everybody who is eligible to do so to get out and vote. The right to vote is one of our most precious rights and the failure to exercise that right diminishes society. Besides voting for the president and vice president, there will be balloting for a number of other federal and state seats as well, including a number of State Supreme Court seats, two seats in the House of Representatives, two State Senate seats and two Assembly seats. Look for The Wave’s endorsements on page four of this issue.

The Wave is selling the 2005 Broad Channel calendars at its Beach 88 Street offices. Come in and purchase a useful and interesting calendar and support the Broad Channel community at the same time.

AllState Insurance Agent and Rockaway Chamber of Commerce President John Lepore has been awarded the “Agency Hands in the Community” Award for his commitment to volunteering to serve his Rockaway Park community. The award comes with a $500 grant to the Rockaway Partnership.

Far Rockaway High School will host its Homecoming Day festivities on Saturday, November 7 at 10 a.m. at the school. All Rockaway graduates are invited to enjoy some happy memories and to watch a football game against Beach Channel High School. While neither team will make the playoffs this year, the game will settle the question of “bragging rights” on the peninsula.

A number of parents, including a local mother of twins, have filed a class action lawsuit against the Department of Education for failure to allow their children to transfer from failing schools as mandated by the federal No Child Left Behind Act.” Jessica Lopez’s twin boys went to pre-kindergarten at PS 114 last year, but were denied entrance into the Kindergarten program because they did not live in the school’s zone. They were assigned instead to PS 225, a school on the state’s list of failing schools. Lopez asked for a transfer to PS 114 for her sons when they reportedly began having problems at PS 225. She was denied the transfer. The chancellor said recently that he plans to accommodate parents such as Lopez as soon as possible.

Congressman Anthony Weiner, who may well run for Mayor in 2005, has challenged Mayor Mike Bloomberg for turning fines into “a backdoor tax.” “There has been a skyrocketing increase in the number of summonses that have been issued,” Weiner said, citing the fact that tickets are now used for revenue enhancement rather than as an enforcement tool. ‘When you have a top ticket of $180 for a parking violation or when you have $1,000 in tickets that you get for an oversize awning, it ceases to be a deterrent and becomes a tax,” Weiner said.

There is a new Website for the discussion of Rockaway history. Called The Rockaway and Five Towns Forum, it can be found on the web at http:/groups.Yahoo. com/group/Rockaway5thistory. At the site, you may vote in a new poll that asks the reason for the “radical changes” in Rockaway in the past. Some of the choices: The arrival of the subway; the destruction of the bungalows; the loss of Playland; white flight and all of the above.

The Cadillac Escalade EXT is the most stolen car in American, according to a new study by the Insurance Institute of America. The Nissan Maxima comes in second and the Cadillac Escalade third. The least stolen car? The Saturn LW.

Senator Charles Schumer is reportedly gearing up to run for Governor of New York State. Those who can’t understand why a Senator would rather be Governor need only look at the recent list of who becomes President. Few senators make the list, but governors do and Schumer is nothing if not anxious to become the first Jewish president.

On November 5 at 2 p.m. the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) will hold a meeting at the Beach Club to discuss future power needs and problems with Rockaway residents. All locals are invited.

Wave editorial cartoonist and local resident Robert Sarnoff has written a one act plan, “Dr. Klog’s Waiting Room,” which will be presented by the Theatre Studio (750 8 Avenue at 46 Street) on November 5 at 8 p.m. and then again on November 6 at 5 p.m.

In last week’s story about the Weiner-Cronin debate, there was a typo that makes a difference and we wanted to correct that error. We wrote that Cronin was contacted on September 18 with the details for the debate when, in fact, he was contacted on October 18. We apologize to Cronin for any embarrassment the typo has caused.

By the way, should Schumer win the state seat, rumors have it that Congressman Greg Meeks would be promoted by the party to fill the seat until the next general election, a big boost for the local Representative. Meeks has become one of John Kerry’s closest political allies in New York. He recently stood next to the presidential candidate at an airport hanger in Albuquerque, New Mexico and then went with Kerry to Tempe, Arizona for a campaign stop. One Democratic pundit told reporters that, should Kerry win, “Meeks would definitely be a power player in the new administration.”

When Carlos Valdez was arrested with three other men in a parked car on Beach 117 Street, he gave his address as 145 Beach 117 Street, as reported in The Wave last week. The residents who live at that address, however, called to say that he lied, that nobody by that name lives at that address. We apologize for any embarrassment caused the residents who do live at that address.

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