Here’s a glance at opinion content published today, July 15:
Pleasantville schools: Editorial
We assess the case of Anthony Rotunno the Hawthorne resident who was offered a post as principal of Pleasantville High School last. Rotunno reviously lead John F. Kennedy High School in the Bronx, where he allegedly changed some students’ English Regents grades from failing to passing and where $90,000 of student-raised funds were either stolen or lost. Pleasantville school district officials have asked him to resign before Aug. 1, when he was due to take the reins at the high school there. We write:
” … School officials are “not happy” about the turn of events, said Julie Schwartz, the district’s communications director. After all, they had checked with three top city Department of Education officials — Rotunno’s direct supervisor, Regional Network Leader Richard Cintron; the Bronx superintendent who had initially hired Rotunno, Norman Wechsler; and Deputy Chancellor Laura Rodriguez. All of them gave positive reports about Rotunno.
“Pleasantville officials, however, stopped short of checking with the human resources department in the chancellor’s office of the New York City Department of Education. If they had, a department spokesperson told staff writer Robert Marchant, they would have been told about the results of the audit, which New York City was aware of in April.
“There is no question that the district should have taken the extra step; student safety demands no less. But what about those education officials in New York City? Did they know about the audit’s finding while they were singing Rotunno’s praises? What game might they have been playing? Hot potato?”
Gulf oil spill: Cartoon
Matt Davies comments on the Gulf of Mexico oil spill in today’s cartoon.
Military spending: Community View
David Gurowsky, a Suffern resident and member of Rockland Coalition for Peace and Justice, offers a Community View in which he argues that the nation’s defense budget should be slashed in order to fund pressing local projects. He writes:
“… I have a proposal: lower the military budget and put some of our federal tax dollars into something vital to the Lower Hudson Vally and not into a bloated military leviathan that will never have enough to spend. Put the money into our schools, hospitals, housing and jobs. A smaller, leaner defense budget will benefit everyone outside the military.”
Yonkers garbage: Reisman
Phil Reisman assesses the smelly state of affairs in Yonkers, where garbage pickup has been intermittent since July 1 because of budgetary reductions in the city’s Department of Public Works.