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Letters: School budgets up for a vote

A file photo of school buses.

A file photo of school buses. Credit: Newsday/Thomas A. Ferrara

Here we go again. Another school tax year, and the same old threats of cuts to school programs if the school districts do not get what they want ["LI schools: Spending up," News, May 1]!

I say, learn to do more with less taxpayer money. Wake up, parents. Don't feel scared of the budget ax. I say learn to accept school cuts, because I am tired of giving more from my pocket.

I cannot wait to sell my home and move out of New York. This has gone too far.

Frank Castro, East Meadow

In response to the compensation package of Carole Hankin, the superintendent of Syosset public schools, how can one legitimize giving someone with a salary of $405,000, a free car and gas, for both public and private use ["Shift in Syosset?" News, May 9]?

The last time I checked, Syosset schools receive a considerable amount of state monies -- our money. How is it legal for the school board to allow our money to be spent on the gas and car of an individual who already earns well over $400,000 a year?

I remember a number of years ago when the federal government was trying to raise the legal drinking age to 21. The government stipulated that states that wanted to continue to receive federal money for highway construction had to go along with raising the age. Louisiana, within its rights, refused to do so, but eventually caved in.

Similarly, why can't our state government mandate that if you want to receive state money for education, each school district must limit superintendent's pay to no more than that of the governor, in addition to eliminating perks like automobiles and free gasoline? If the town of Syosset still wants to award this ridiculous compensation through their own real estate taxes, let them do so. But for heaven's sake, why should I have to pay a penny in the gas tank of Carole Hankin any longer?

Ken Kastenbaum, Merrick

Recently Newsday published a list of public school budgets, so I thought I would do some simple math ["Spending by school district," News, May 10]. I am in the Plainedge school district, and the proposed budget for Plainedge is a bit over $86 million. The proposed number of students is 3,200, which means the cost is just under $27,000 a student.

I find this to be extremely high, especially when compared to my daughter's college costs. She recently graduated from college, and I was paying slightly more than what it will cost for a student attending Plainedge. The difference is that what I paid included a dorm room and meals, not to mention educational and athletic facilities that were far superior to those at Plainedge. And just to be clear, my daughter attended a college outside of New York, so I was not paying for a state school.

Tom Vespo, Bethpage