'Pressing the M-W School District to act prematurely ... would be improper'


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Dear Mr. Petlin,

New Yorkers expect far better of a public school superintendent. State law requires that school districts covering towns and villages operate as independent governments, separate and apart from their municipal governments.

Yet, for years, you’ve been advocating for the village of Kiryas Joel’s would-be annexation, seemingly in disregard of the law.

Moreover, your allegations of hate and fear-mongering and your demeaning portrayal of Monroe’s worried parents as stooges are offensive.

Leave those to your Village Administrator Gedalye Szegedin and his disciple on this side of the highway, Town Supervisor Harley Doles.

Let’s stick with the facts:

• Doles was way out of line when he demanded that the Monroe-Woodbury School District change its boundaries to help KJ annex. The town government has no authority over the schools, and the M-W district’s rejection showed proper independence.

• It was dangerous of KJ to amend its village boundaries in advance of approvals from the other parties whose consent is legally required to make such changes, that is, the M-W district, BOCES and New York State.

• The M-W district would be reckless to agree to boundary revisions before it finished researching the concerns it raised about the annexation’s impacts; received and digested the study of those from its independent consultant; and, before the annexation itself is finalized sometime in the future, if ever.

Should either of the two appeals currently in the Appellate Court succeed, the annexation will be undone.

What then becomes of a school district whose boundaries were altered, erroneously, in haste?

• As you are aware, the M-W School District has absolutely no need to rush to judgement. The court will address the appeals, and all parties can take the actions necessary, if any, as a result, long before hundreds or thousands of homes are built and occupied by new Hasidic school budget voters.

Pressing the M-W School District to act prematurely, simply to help the village of KJ’s annexation defense, would be improper in the job description of a New York public school superintendent.

Thankfully, Mr. Petlin, the M-W school district – apparently unlike the KJ district – acts independently and refuses to do the bidding of its municipal governments.

The executive committee of United Monroe.



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