Parent Jennifer Boudin, center, of Melville, is brought to tears...

Parent Jennifer Boudin, center, of Melville, is brought to tears as she learns that Billy Joel may donate money to help save the Long Island High School for the Arts and Doshi Science Technology Engineering and Math Institute, during a meeting of the Nassau BOCES board on Thursday night, Nov. 19, 2015. Boudin's daughter Emma, 15, is at right. Credit: Danielle Finkelstein

The editorial “School fiefdoms come up short” [Nov. 30] underestimated the breadth and depth of all that BOCES offers.

The Nassau Board of Cooperative Educational Services serves school districts of every size and economic makeup. Consolidation of some districts would still not enable most to replicate everything Nassau BOCES offers. Individual students island-wide have unique needs, and BOCES serves those needs, including opportunities in career education, the performing arts and STEM — science, technology, engineering and math.

All of us agree: Students need to be provided with every opportunity to succeed down every potential path they set their mind to or require. But it is not just that Nassau BOCES consistently offers this extensive range of programs, or even that they are offered at an efficient cost. It’s the overall quality of the programs unfailingly provided by BOCES.

At Barry Tech, students benefit from mentorship by industry professionals who provide hands-on learning. Long Island High School for the Arts students learn from performing artists with world-class experience beyond the classroom. And BOCES’ role as a regional resource has forged beneficial partnerships with premier institutions, including Cold Spring Harbor and Brookhaven National laboratories.

While some districts can and do offer their own specialty programs, they can only do so much.

Eric B. Schultz, Plainview

Editor’s note: The writer is the president of the Nassau BOCES Board of Education.


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