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Long IslandEducation

Voters approve science, athletic upgrades to Syosset schools

Syosset Senior High School

Syosset Senior High School Photo Credit: Howard Schnapp

Enhanced security, new science labs and an artificial turf athletic field are among $45 million in facility upgrades for the Syosset school district after voters approved the spending last week.

The Feb. 13 proposition, which passed 821-292, includes $34.3 million from a 15-year-bond issue and $11.46 million from a capital reserve account.

The money will go toward remodeling science and research labs at Syosset High School. Also planned for the high school are outdoor bathrooms, two new tennis courts and an artifical turf field that will replace a natural grass field.

The money will pay for enclosed walkways at Syosset High School and at South Grove Annex to improve security. New air conditioning units, locker rooms and bathrooms are to be added to various buildings.

Construction could begin as early as July 2019. School officials said that the average homeowner’s taxes would increase by $20.65 each year for every $10,000 in school taxes paid.

A second proposition that passed 909-204 approved energy saving and solar initiatives and will replace antiquated heating systems. That proposition, known as the Enhanced Safety and Energy Efficiency Plan, has zero effect on the tax levy, officials said, and will generate $2.2 milion in state aid reimbursement.

The district, factoring in installation costs and state aid, is expected to save $7.7 million over an 18-year period through that proposition, officials said.

District officials have said the proposals address needed improvements outlined in their Five-Year Buildings Condition Survey that reviewed academics, athletics, air quality, safety, and energy efficiency.

Superintendent Thomas Rogers said in a statement that “the work included in both propositions will not only preserve the community’s investment in our schools, but will also address the items identified in our Five-Year Buildings Condition Survey, renovate our facilities and improve the quality of education for our students into the future.”

Officials wrote on the school’s website that district schools were built in the late 1950s and early 1960s and that “while repairs are done regularly, many of the major systems are approaching 70 years of age.” The propositions “are designed to work together to maximize efficiency and minimize the time needed to complete the work.

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