• Onteora Mailbag

    The Onteora Central School District has created this webpage in an effort to improve communication. Our “Mailbag” page will provide people with an easy-to-use format for asking the District questions. It will also seek to address rumors that sometimes circulate through the Onteora community. 


    Please note that not all questions will necessarily be answered. In addition, some questions may require research and will not be answered immediately. For individual and private concerns, contact the school or District office by phone. We cannot answer comments about specific individuals by name.  If you need help locating the appropriate employee to whom you should direct your query, please click here.


    For questions on issues that impact a number of people in the community, responses will be posted publicly. Please submit your questions or comments by clicking on the above link. We look forward to hearing from you!


  • September 3rd 2013 

    "How do I register a concern regarding my child's education?" "Why, if I write to the Board of Education about my child, am I sometimes referred back to Administration?" These are among the more frequently asked questions we receive.

    We always want to be aware of problems our students/parents/community are experiencing so we can try to correct them. The best way to address a problem or concern is to always start at the level most closely involved with the situation, and then if further action is necessary to move on to the next level. Those most closely involved with the situation will have the best and most information available and are likely to be in the best position to make recommendations regarding the steps needed for resolution.

    For instance, if your child is having a problem in the classroom, start with his or her teacher. If discussions with the teacher do not resolve the situation to your satisfaction, call the school principal. The principal will review the situation and, if possible, make recommendations for resolving the issue. In some cases, a guidance counselor may be able to help. If the problem is still not resolved to your satisfaction, call the Superintendent’s office and explain the situation. In the unlikely case that you are still not able to find resolution, please contact the Board of Education in writing. In your letter or email, please describe the issue and the steps that you have already taken.

     Typically, the chain of command within the school district would be as follows:

    ·       Teacher/Employee (for example, a coach)

    ·       Principal

    ·       Central Office administrator in charge of area (Director of Pupil Personnel Services for special education matters; Athletic Director for sports; and       Assistant Superintendent for Business for matters concerning the Business Office, Food Service, Buildings and Grounds, or Transportation).

    ·       Superintendent

    ·       Board of Education

    ·       Commissioner of Education

    We value your input, and will make every effort to address your concerns. We look forward to working with you to resolve any problems you may have.


    August 9th 2013

    We have recently received a number of letters and questions regarding how the District goes about determining class sizes.

    Class sizes are largely determined by the number of students enrolling in each grade level each year. The District makes every effort to ensure that classes are neither too big, nor too small. The District’s regulation on class sizes (8760aR) sets the following “desirable” ranges for elementary-level class sizes:

    Kindergarten: 18-22 students
    Grades 1-3: 21-25 students
    Grades 4-6: 23-27 students

    Each year, building principals and the Superintendent closely monitor enrollment figures and class composition. If it is deemed necessary, an additional section may be added to a particular grade level. Teachers may also be reassigned from one grade level to another.

    We are committed to ensuring that each classroom promotes an optimum learning environment for students.

    May 14th 2013 

    I understand that the tax dispute between the City of New York and the Town of Hurley regarding the Ashokan Reservoir was resolved. What is happening to all the money that had been set aside by the District pending the outcome of this dispute?


    Some of the $4.8 million that had been set aside for this tax certiorari is being used to lower this year’s tax levy. This money helped the District develop a proposed budget that carries a ZERO percent tax levy increase. Some of the money ($200,000) was refunded to New York City for taxes paid in the current year. The remainder of the released funds is being held in a reserve fund so that it will be available to the District to offset the tax levy for the next year or two.