Jim Hyland 0

New Paltz Parents for Fun- Let the kids play!

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March 2, 2014

To: Maria Rice, Superintendent NP CSD - Barbara Clinton, Principal High School- Dr. Richard Wiesenthal, Principal Middle School - Jacqueline Sinatra, Principal Lenape Elementary School - Debra Hogencamp, Principal Duzine Elementary School - New Paltz Board of Education - Town of New Paltz Supervisor, Susan Zimet - Jason West, Mayor, Village of New Paltz

As taxpayers and parents of students in the New Paltz Central School District we are very concerned about the lack of gym time and low priority given to having both free gym time and organized gym time (and field time) for students in the district.

This has been any ongoing issue and one that is discussed on a regular basis among parents.

The incident of the past weekend has further clarified this issue and has spurred this group of parents to organize and act. The New Paltz Youth Basketball Association (YBA) is a wonderful organization of hundreds of kids and adults, with a great group of volunteers who come together each week to run a youth basketball program for the whole community. It brings together all types of players and skills and includes organized games and clinics.

Students and coaches where informed late Friday night that all games at the Middle School had been cancelled, due to a conflict in the gym. Due to an email error my team never got this information. When I arrived the gym was empty as was the parking lot. The gym had been sitting empty all morning. Why is this? Why was an empty gym not utilized by a large group of New Paltz students? Why is a public building not being utilized to it fullest to make sure students get every opportunity to play and exercise?

I don’t think I need to emphasize the importance of physical exercise to the New Paltz Central School District or state the obvious: that our school district should do everything possible to make sure we can get our children playing and exercising as much as possible. Further, use of these facilities is consistent with District Policy as stated in the “Request for Use of Facilities Form”:


The Board of Education recognizes and affirms the primary purpose of school facilities is to provide and promote the education of the District's children. It shall be the policy of the Board to encourage the greatest possible use of school facilities for community-wide activities. This is meant to include use by recognized athletic, civic, social and fraternal, youth and religious organizations in accordance with law.

We want the school district to immediately look into this specific incident. But this is also not an isolated incident. Youth soccer was also cancelled on Sunday and there have been numerous frustrating incidents like this on an on-going basis.

We would like to have a committee formed that would include parents, our local sports programs and students to find ways to maximize our public spaces to give all students the opportunity to participate in sports, this includes great organizations like the YBA, Youth Baseball, Youth Wrestling, Youth Soccer, Youth Lacrosse and other such groups, but also includes ways to have open gym time and field time for kids to just be kids and play.

I’m more than happy to be the first person on this committee and to find real and specific ways to make sure we are utilizing these public spaces. We will ensure that a gym or field never again sits unused when students could be playing, exercising and having fun. I greatly appreciate your attention to this very important issue and would like the opportunity to speak with you further. Please contact me at your earliest convenience at 845-255-1699.

This letter is signed by only a small fraction of the parents, students and taxpayers who agree with this position. This letter will be placed on ipetitions.com at the following link:


Thank you,

New Paltz Parents for Fun- Let the kids play!

Jim Hyland-845-255-1699 ,Austin Rynne, Matt Driscoll,Russell Yess, Tom Hawkins, Kim Cuppet, Nancy Heiz

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