2009-11-06 / Letters

Save Stella Maris

Dear Editor,

We have all read with sadness and even alarm that Stella Maris HS is planning to close after this academic year.

Now is the time for our elected representatives to earn their paychecks and show some leadership.

Quality education is one of the first requirements of any successful community. The public throughout NYC, but especially in Rockaway, has de - cried the quality of local public sch - ools for many years. There have been some isolated improvements in re - cent years, but it cannot be denied that the local public schools do not meet the needs of parents and students. And the higher the expectations of parents, the less they think of local public schools. These parents and students have voted with their feet and shunned local public schools in favor of more academically challenging opportunities off the peninsula.

Stella Maris has a fine building in a good location. If their current business plan does not permit a financially viable school then it is time for a new plan. Old traditions must be re-examined in the face of new realities. Even my alma mater, Arch bis h - op Molloy HS, converted to coed a number of years ago to improve its own financial prospects.

I am not prejudging the solution, but I firmly believe a solution exists that will pay big dividends to Rock - away parents and the education of their children. The only thing that is missing is leadership.

It is time for those who perpetually scramble to get on the public payroll demonstrate the leadership they promise voters every election year.

VINCE CASTELLANO

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