No decision has been made by the state on a proposed signal light at the corner of Route 39 and County Line Road, which is the sometimes tricky access route to Pioneer High School.
Superintendent Benjamin Halsey told the Board of Education at its Nov. 15 meeting that he has received mixed
signals from the state Department of Transportation regarding a traffic light at the juncture. After initially being told by a regional
director that it was not in the cards, that same official called again a short
time later and said he would look again at the traffic studies that have been
Mr. Halsey noted that as early as 2000, Pioneer had an agreement
with the state to have signal lights installed at both Rt. 39 & County Line
AND Rt. 16/Old Olean Road, with funding granted by local legislators. Mr. Halsey
said at this point the proposal has not been approved or denied. He said he will continue to press for answers and report back to the board at its Dec. 6 meeting.
Meanwhile, Mr. Halsey said a recent focus of the leadership team has been
poverty and its effect on learning outcomes in the district. More workshops on poverty are planned at the building
level, he said, with a goal of developing a five-year plan addressing the effect of
poverty on students. He said the rate of poverty is significant and growing,
and will continue as a district goal going forward.
Poverty was also a focus during recent staff development Nov. 21-22.
Mr. Halsey reported his involvement with the Arcade Area Chamber of
Commerce has increased, and he is excited to contribute more. He said the
chamber has some exciting new members and initiatives, and he has participated
at ribbon-cuttings for new business members. Mr. Halsey said he will help plan the chamber's Tri-County Fishing Derby in the spring.
Mr. Halsey introduced a proposed project for additional capital
improvements to the high school pool area. He said a recently completed project
in that space, in which ceramic tiles were installed to help with ventilation,
resulted in unforeseen acoustical problems.
The noise in the pool area is unbearable, he said,
and a health/safety concern. Mr. Halsey
said it appears it can be addressed over the winter with wall & ceiling
treatments, with $60.000-$70,000 left over from another capital project. Assistant superintendent Nick Silvaroli said he thought the project would be eligible for state aid