For many reasons, the volume of traffic, the need for parking spaces for student, faculty, and visitors and the need for access for the many parents, who routinely pick up and drop off students, have continued to increase in the Locust Valley Middle School/High School parking lot. These factors together with the many school buses, which pull into and out of the parking lot every morning and every afternoon, pose ongoing and mounting challenges to student, faculty and visitor safety. In addition, the District’s notification of two easements (from the Water District and from Nassau County) which could have impacted the parking lot and restricted access this summer and next summer, further complicated and delayed the finding of feasible solutions.
In order to research options to the safety concerns associated with the congestion in the parking lot, information was shared and gathered from those in attendance at the Board of Education meeting on July 8th and throughout the month of July and the beginning of August. On August 6th, Dr Hunderfund, the Superintendent of Schools, presented responses to more than 30 questions and suggestions which were received from community members at the Board of Education meeting. The information presented included responses from legal counsel regarding legal constraints as well as a review of proposals made by Renee Marcus, the district’s architect, regarding various construction options, estimated completion dates and cost/benefit analyses.
In order to alleviate some of the congestion in the main parking lot, increase safety and maximize the number of parking spots for students, the Board authorized the creation of a small, gravel lot, which will be adjacent to the main lot and what is known as “the shed.” Scheduled to be operational and accessible to administrators and custodians in time for the first day of classes, this lot will accommodate up to 15 cars. The relocation of these faculty members to the small lot will enable 15 more students to park in the main lot than would otherwise have been the case.
These additional spaces will also enable students who qualify for parking privileges to have access to the main parking lot on an alternating day basis. In order to qualify, Seniors who want to drive to school, must provide evidence of a senior (Class 5) license, have parental permission to drive, and submit a completed and signed permission form. (Click here for the form). This form is different than the form for permission to leave school.
Seniors may only park in the school lot during the school day after they have been issued a validated parking tag and only on the day, either “A” or “B,” to which they are assigned privileges.
Dr. McGuire will host an information sharing meeting regarding the parking lot for students and parents in the HS Cafeteria on Tuesday August 26th at 7:00 p.m. and on Tuesday September 2nd at 7:00 p.m. Another review of progress and more updates regarding the parking lot will be made at the Board of Education meeting on September 10th in the Mini Theater and at subsequent Board meetings in September and October.
In addition, the LVCSD Safety Committee, which is comprised of students, faculty, parents and Board of Education members, will monitor the implementation of the alternating day solution, and will research long-term solutions during September and October. At the Board of Education meeting in the Mini Theater on Tuesday, October 21st, Safety Committee Chairperson, Mrs. Gottesman, will present the committee’s conclusions and recommendations.
The high school and middle school administrators and the Safety Committee will continue to monitor implementation of changes regarding parking lot access and will make periodic reports at Board of Education meetings throughout the school year.