Message to the Community Sent on June 8, 2020



 Message from the Spackenkill Union Free School District


June 8, 2020

Dear Spackenkill Community,

Over the weekend, voting procedures were updated, so we want to share new information with you. Secondly, over the weekend, we had a discussion that made us feel that we needed to speak out further on the conflict and the reawakening that is occurring concerning race relations in our country. 

Budget Voting Changes
On Sunday, the Governor, in response to delays in mailing ballots in some districts, issued an Executive Order modifying his previous budget voting procedures. We now have to delay our budget tallies one week, until June 16. We will follow the same procedure of tallying the vote through live streaming at our next Board of Education meeting on June 16. In addition, we are required to accept ballots dropped off by hand until June 9 (you can place them in the locked mailbox outside the District Office at 15 Croft Road). After that time, ballots will also be accepted only by mail until June 16 by 5 pm.
Bigotry and Hatred
The other topic that we want to speak about is the brutality that we are witnessing. Our SRO Officer, Steve Doughty, and Dr. Villanti spoke about the cruelty against George Floyd last week.  It was painful to watch. On a personal note, Dr. Villanti felt sick to his stomach and he found himself turning away from the TV. Officer Doughty was just as disturbed. Officer Doughty commented that the conduct of those officers is inconsistent with the representation of the Town’s police force and their training. We still cannot comprehend how anyone could treat someone like that. 
Dr. Villanti’s daughter shared something that she wrote last week:
            We need to say more.
            We need to do more.

Last Friday, our newsletter was focused on the “do more” part of this statement. We won’t repeat ourselves here. Our Board of Education and our leadership team work every day to back our words with deeds. We are among the safest districts in the region. We pride ourselves on the inclusive nature of our school culture. We enforce our Code of Conduct. We do not look the other way from any form of bigotry. Are we perfect? Absolutely not. Do we need to do more? Yes. But violence, hatred, and mistreatment of others regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, and religion have no place in our school district or our community. To those who have protested peacefully, your message has been heard.
Stay Spartan Strong and Spack Proud,

Mark Villanti
Mark Villanti, Ed.D.                                         
Superintendent of Schools                           

Tom Keith 

Thomas Keith, Jr.
President, Board of Education




15 Croft Road, Poughkeepsie, NY 12603; 845-463-7800