*Members: If you have any announcements that you would like to post on the ROBS web site, please contact Nick Siciliano at
             News2@robsny.org. Announcements will be posted each month on this page. If you miss any previous month's announcements,
             you can view them at the Archives page of this web site. You can also read more news in our Newsletters. In addition, if you have
             your own web site, and would like to share it with other members, let us know and we can include the link on the ROBS site
IMPORTANT DATES   IN THE NEWS                                                                        JUNE 2018
June 1
ROBS Luncheon

June 21
Executive Board Meeting

Meeting Dates
Events Schedule

POSTED 6/1/18

   Jose “Charlie” Tirado, the husband of Carmen Roldan, passed away on May 30, 2018. Carmen retired in 2013 from the Administration Building and is currently the treasurer of ROBS.
   The services for Jose are the following: Viewing:
Grant Funeral Home 
571 Suffolk Ave.
Brentwood, NY 
Sunday June 3rd 
2-4pm and 7-9:30pm

Funeral services: St. Anne’s Church
88 Second Ave.
Brentwood, NY
Monday June 4th at 9:45am
Interment to follow at St. Patrick's Cemetery in Bay Shore, NY

Please join Carmen and her family after in celebrating the life of Charlie at: Bonwitt Inn, 1 Vanderbilt Motor Pkwy, Commack, NY

POSTED 6/1/18
     Once again ROBS will be presenting scholarships to four graduating Brentwood High School seniors this year. Karen Carcamo will be awarded the $1,000 Jack Zuckerman scholarship and Crystal Benavides will receive the $1000 Dorothy Zuckerman scholarship. Lauren Gutierrez will be presented with the Lilian Kelly $750 Scholarship, and Laetitia Petion will be awarded the $500 Sheila Sustrin scholarship.

POSTED 6-5-18
   There will be a retirement party for Chris Benitez on Tuesday, June 26 from 4-8pm at the Brentwood Country Club. Please click on the flier below for more details and to make reservations.


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Check out the Famous People and Events on that special day in June see what else happened! Historical People and Events for June June 2018 Holidays, Bizarre, Unique, Special Days
Bizarre and Unique Holidays in June
All About June
June in History
Why did we do it?
     What was our purpose in taking on such an open ended “History Project”; for which we evolved a script of questions and got answers from over 150 subjects for two decades?
     We couldn’t answer the question in 1994 when people would ask “What are you going to do with the interviews?” All we could say was that for educational purposes we had to document our record now or lose the chance to preserve so many poignant accounts, funny stories and touching tales told by exemplary educators. We knew these dedicated public servants might shortly, for reasons yet unknown, be leaving Brentwood for good.
     So, we decided to let time sort out the details. We began scheduling appointments. W
e asked questions and listened saving for generations the essence of what it meant to have been an educator or employed, in this large public school system during the second half of the 20th century. Brentwood remains an exemplar to all others; a diverse microcosm of America reflecting 124 districts on Long Island while simultaneously resembling thousands across the U.S. We’ve accomplished something here to be proud of. Whether we were interviewed or not, ours is a claim of service that few professionals in the State of New York or elsewhere have positioned themselves to share in the way we have.
     INITIALLY the practice of sitting with a subject for an hour and giving them a hundred percent focused attention seemed somewhat daunting to a number of friends and colleagues. So much so in fact that many declined our repeated invitations to speak with us as they left careers or retired from full employment. Despite all assurances that we were not about investigative journalism or invading privacy, they deferred. Now, twenty years after we began, some are saying they may be ready. “Better late than never” we say. However, to all among you who were willing to share not only your classroom experiences and personal stories, but precious memories from your lives along with your fondest hopes for the future, we say “Thanks”. Thanks for allowing us to continue the process by paying it forward as we share these interviews with the Brentwood community and countless professionals and researchers near and far. Through an acceptance of ROBS offer of collaboration with Archivist Dr. Geri Solomon and The Long Island Studies Institute at Hofstra University our History Project lives on in academia as well as in the collection of the Brentwood Public Library, thanks to Director, Thomas A. Tarantowicz.
   Enjoy unlimited visits to www.robsny.org where you can watch and listen to segments from featured Interviews in the ROBS History Project Section on our Announcements Page each month. Return here to listen and learn again and again.


George Edward Klein Jr.
Interviewed: 5/1/07

   As a matter of public record following thirty years of full time employment with the Brentwood Schools this dedicated educator at age fifty-five retired from active service in June of 1985 to return twenty two years later for a voluntary ROBS exit interview in the library of the high school. It must be said that his ongoing service to the community continued short of thirty three years in other ways including a Presidency of the NYS Policeman’s Benevolent Association, charity work for the Salvation Army, and his dedication to Islip’s alternative school and other services too numerous to mention.
   George Edward Klein Jr. was named for his father and paternal grandfather. As a youngster he was known affectionately as “the professor” stemming from a love of reading and his devotion to books and education. When we spoke he’d been married for fifty two years to the former Charlotte Heinze who was then working in the Library at Loretta Park as a part time Clerk Typist. They had four children; Richie, who was teaching Chemistry in the Ross Building, Lisa, working as a Recreation Therapist in the State Penitentiary in Concord New Hampshire, Linda, the youngest a speech pathologist with Wicomico County MD whose husband would become a math teacher the following year (his second career), and Barbara, his oldest- who’d accepted a buy-out, had been Director of Emergency Services in Melbourne, Florida and was moving toward another career in Children’s Hospital. They were grandparents to seven. Barbara had two, and Emily came to his mind immediately. The girls he told us, are very “sharp” and oriented toward the Arts. All the girls participated in music programs, Barbara had been a fire-bird twirler and there were only about five of them in all of Long Island. Lisa was a great Coral Performer. She did the Singing Nun and “brought down the house” in East Islip in her junior year when she was in school. Richard, whose son is Eric, was married and divorced. He’d been the “brainier” one who went into fishing and shipping and got a Captain’s license in Texas before the oil industry took a bad turn.
   He built a second career studying Chemistry and was hired by the Brentwood School District to teach in the High School where he was employed. His son Eric followed in his father’s footsteps obtaining his Captain’s license and is a devoted fisherman while attending Suffolk Community and preparing to take the exam for Suffolk Police with a thousand others competing for openings.
   Recalling his earliest memories he took us back to New Hyde Park and his first years of life. He remembered them as difficult. His father built the house his sister Wilatlmina Joan and he lived in on North 19th St., during the Depression. He remembered the tenements on their corner. and building fires in the vacant lot with other kids and roasting potatoes called “Mickey’s” to pass the time.
    The older kids went to Sewanhaka High School while he was still in elementary school on New Hyde Park Road. He remembers how many other students were stuck in Europe when the war broke out having been prevented returning to school from vacation because they couldn’t get passage. He remembers how they were welcomed back in September by his teachers.
    His father’s business suffered greatly during those years. He’d been an electrical contractor in business for himself before the war. When circumstances provided him with an opportunity to buy a piece of land in Islip near the radio tower he did so and constructed a house on it which he’d almost finished when war was declared. At that point he was obliged to take a job in the Bethlehem ship yards in Hoboken, New Jersey to and from which he commuted each day. George’s grandmother, Grandma Klein, lived in New Hyde Park and ran a kind of family wayside house. It was where everybody stayed George would come in and help his father with his business on weekends. He ran a poultry farm for the 4H Club (of which he was a member) while he was still in school. He swept the library floor at lunchtime, did bottles at the deli on weekends, Dick Plates’ Islip Deli on Main Street, where he put cans on the shelves on the old, old A & P (There were no men around then. They were all in service. His grandpa was a striper for the Schenck Bus Company and his sister was a Comptroller. His grandpa never learned how to drive. His daughter, George’s aunt drove him back and forth to work and did it for years.
    He remembered the end of the war and people who had enlisted. Sperry was close by. They hired whoever they could. He remembered a fight that took place on a Schenck bus when a lady said out loud, “I almost have my mortgage paid off. This war should last.”    Someone got up and decked her while George and everybody else got off the bus in front of the old Floral Park movie house on Jericho Turnpike. The woman who decked her had boys in service and that was not a smart thing to have said. He remembered the little flags in the windows and the gold stars on them for people who’d been lost.    He remembers going without a lot. Everything was rationed. People today don’t understand what it was like. You had to come to the store with money and coupons. First, you gave up your coupons and then you had to be able to pay for them. “They gave you only four gallons of gas a week unless you had a truck which because of his business, his father did. The police wouldn’t let you drive around on a Sunday unless you were going to Church or to a funeral. “We collected fat and scrap aluminum, recycled paper, cultivated Victory Gardens” They had lots of Victory Gardens. His grandma did all the preserving, he said. He would “candle eggs” at night while he listened to Lowell Thomas on the radio. The farm had 1,000 chickens. It was a big farm. He would prepare the orders one day and then deliver them on his bicycle the next.
    George Klein’s mother’s maiden name was Richter. They owned a farm on Jericho Tpk. and Tulip Ave. His father in law had been a butcher from Berlin. There was a Bund in New Hyde Park in which his family did not participate. It was all low key. When the FBI raided it and arrested people there was a lot of commotion but nothing came of it because the neighborhood had been thoroughly integrated with others like Polish and German people from northern Europe.
   George’s father-in-law’s name was Heinz. He built his house in 1928 in Islip on Irish Lane. He came over bag and baggage as a legal immigrant in 1926. His cousins had the only other house, a three story brick building, at the end of Fairview Ave. and ran a laundry, from which they drove back and forth to Brooklyn a couple of times a week in a Model T Ford truck. They brought George’s son Eric into the business and he like many immigrants, went to work for the gas company and dug gas lines from Bay Shore to Riverhead. His mother was a good cook. “All the ladies in the family his grandmother, his mother his wife were good cooks”
    His father was born in New Hyde Park. He spoke only German until he attended Kindergarten. His father’s father, Pete Klein, came from Alsace Lorraine to Elmont which at the time was all farm country. They owned a farm in Elmont. His hobby was golf and he was a baseball player. He owned Jericho Recreation Park in New Hyde Park. When George was young he was very active and also involved in the Presbyterian Church. In Islip they went to Trinity Lutheran Church because of their mother’s religion. His sister and he were involved in Sunday School, George was the Treasurer and reminded us how there were no adults around. They were all gone if you can imagine how it was. There was no traffic on the roads either. It wasn’t allowed. Most people in Islip would work for Stump and Walter Bulb farm. For 25 cents an hour you’d pick tulip bulbs and place them in a basket. During the war he and all the kids were out in the woods.
His father was never drafted but he was always on the verge of being selected. Uncle Sam moved the age restriction up to 38 years and he was 38 but he worked at Bethlehem ship yards. He believed his father died of cancer in the late 70’s, due to exposure to all the asbestos dust and particulate carcinogens. He used to sleep on the boilers because the men had to sleep on the boats for days to get them ready to get them out. The Queen Mary would come back and he worked on her and the Queen Elizabeth, where they never shut down the boilers. They were always ready to go in an instants notice as soon as they were loaded up.
    His choice of career was made basically on faith. He was very involved in the 4 H Club. When he was in high school he was Editor in Chief of the school newspaper, The Buccaneer. He acquired an interest in going to college. No one in his family before him had ever gone to college. He got some scholarships to go to Cornell. His father’s business was coming back to life so he could afford to pay room and board. The next year his sister went to Cornell, where she majored in Home Economics. Initially going to do poultry, George changed his major to Extension Teaching; which was like 4H Club, doing presentations of new farming methods. Farmers were set in their ways and it took no small amount of convincing to get them to accept change. He remembers many great discussions and it occurred to him that quite possibly that was how he got into radio where he joined the college radio station. The radio tower in Islip was one he started.
  His mother died at the end of the war (1945). His father remarried and he ended up with a step mother. He and his sister got “fleeced” in business and generally, his father had bought a farm where they moved up in the Albany area but soon after he was diagnosed with cancer and died in 1977.
   His grandparents were influential in his life; they were very thrifty, To this day he is a saver. He doesn’t throw anything away and would sooner “bite a nickel in half” than waste it.
   He remembers Miss Robes the Latin Teacher, Maude Sherwood who became Principal of the Islip High School, his Social Studies teacher and Mentor for the Buccaneer the school paper, and Pete O’Ttone who was one of his teachers, came back after the War. He was the father of the O’Ttone’s who were running WXBA in Brentwood that was still functioning and on the air at the time of his interview.    Christmas was the biggest and most celebrated holiday of his families’ year. He didn’t have a large extended family. It consisted basically of his father’s sister Ellen. His mother had no siblings. Her family stayed back in Brooklyn. Pete Klein (his father’s grandfather) had been Catholic. When he married Minnie, she was from the Presbyterian group. He said “Would you believe that there were groups among the family that didn’t talk to each other”? A brother of his lived right across the street from him in New Hyde Park on the old Reckenbield Family Farm. He married a lady and they had no children but she didn’t talk to anyone in the family and for whatever reason none of them would cross the street and talk to anyone in the family for 30 years. George came back after the war for some 4 H Club business he was following up on and was invited over by George Reckenbield. Grandma Minnie Klein was laughing her head off she said “that’s the first time anyone on this side of the family has crossed the road”. Charlie, another relative lived just up the road on a side street. Nobody talked to each other and didn’t remember what the rift was about.
   I remember that house. The house was like time stood still and it was 1920. They still had the big double globe kerosene lamps in the front room, velour drapes, the old, old, old piano, the heavy furniture, the gas and coal stove in the kitchen and this was in the early fifties.   George’s favorite subjects in school were Social Studies and English. His favorite season was spring, Winter was depressing, cold and icy on L.I. The aroma of someone smoking a cigar reminds him of his time in the army and in college when everyone smoked cigars and pipes. This was before being warned by his doctor to stop smoking at the age of 85 years due to his high blood pressure.    He attended Grammar School in New Hyde Park but moved to Islip in the 6th Grade. Mrs. Christiansen was his teacher; a nice lady, an older person, they all taught until they were 70 years old in those days. They were paid about $3,000 a year and all lived in a boarding house and commuted back home upstate on weekends. Mrs. Goodrich was the English Teacher. He remembered her well. She was great with Prose and Reading. She came from Newburgh. Every weekend they would go back. There was someone who came from Beacon and one or two from the Hudson Valley and even further up. He had a Bachelor of Science Degree from Cornell as an Extension Teaching Specialist. During the Korean War at Cornell they were all in ROTC otherwise they were drafted. George was in ROTC and enjoyed it. He took Intelligence Courses. When they had to go active he could pick the month he wanted to leave. July, August, September. George picked August. He reported to Ft. Sill because he was in the Artillery Section. You couldn’t get into any of the Specialty Sections unless you were studying for a degree. To be in the Signal Corp you had to be an electrical engineer - everybody else went into Artillery. Prior to this he had been active in the radio station management at Cornell. He was a day or two early and there were all these specialties that you could apply for but as everyone in the Army knew the chances of getting anything you applied for was slim to none, but low and behold, he filed an application to go for Psychological Warfare, (that’s intelligence, that’s radio, propaganda) They chose George as an Instructor to teach communication His request to go to Psychological Warfare was granted so he was frozen in place. No one could touch him. He was given the highest priority ever. How? He just filled it out and listed his qualifications. They sent him to Ft. Bragg. In the interim his mother died. He arrived just as they were setting up the new Psychological Warfare Center. This became the Special School – the Kennedy Special Warfare School. He expected to go to school for 3 or 4 months but they were short staffed and needed Lieutenants. He became a Second Lieutenant and was sent out for interviews but instead was frozen for staff. He became an Assistant to the S4 Colonel. Fell into a Captains Spot later. Made 1st Lieutenant in 6 months, He was filling a Major’s spot, that’s how short they were. Suddenly he’s a big wheel with a pressed uniform and chauffeur - but working long hours. They were training Special Forces People going on secret missions. The U.S. was big in Germany then and in Northern Europe. Someone would disappear and be asked when they returned “How was your vacation”? They had such phony cover stories. George had a lot of DP’s (displaced persons) to train who in five years would get their green cards. Those people worked extremely hard – “like Trojans”. The missions they went on were all very hush, hush. For example, George had a Corporal under his command…He’d send him into town to buy locks and teach him how to pick locks. He’d buy chemicals in the drug store and we’d teach him how to blow things up. Nobody was allowed to go near us. The irony of the whole thing was they flew in a box car into one of our mess halls at the end of the Korean War. That sort of brought some light to us. We had to run around taking film out of the Colonel’s cameras. George was also the Assistant Fire Marshall. His Colonel was the Fire Marshall. Here they had a flying box car sitting in the middle of the mess hall having killed a couple of KP’s, and dropped troopers across the parade field . He wound up on the front page of The New York Times. He was asked ”How did the picture get out of here?” Strange, because, their unit was not supposed to exist. Yet the Army had a shoulder emblem for the unit that was a Knight’s head. Everyone would ask, “What’s that?” But you couldn’t tell them what it meant. It was all hush, hush.
    Now out of the Korean War and on the way home, on early release he’s engaged but the only jobs for 4 H persons are upstate on the Canadian border. He had a chance then to get a Masters Degree. Dole Pineapple wanted to give him a Masters to go to Hawaii to help plant Pineapples. It was then he saw an ad in the paper: WANTED. Policemen for New York State Parks. He went for an interview on a Wednesday, was given his uniform and filled out the forms Thursday and went to the shooting range Friday morning. Friday night he was working the 4 to 12 shift at Jones Beach State Park, Bethpage State Park and the Parkways. They gave him his keys and said “Now, don’t get involved. If you need help, call us” That night he broke up a fight, reported an accident and a heart attack and was told, “Man, you’re a busy beaver”. He kept that job. When the State had a big fight over Civil Service everyone got laid off. They wanted to rehire everyone as Provisional’s. Eventually he took another test that included gymnastics and was number nine on the list. He was hired back but in the interim, he had no job.
   He went to work for NEWSDAY. He helped set up the carriers and recruit them for the whole Brentwood area, He knew Brentwood like the back of his hand. He applied for a job as a policeman for Islip Town and had to be vetted. They called him in and said, “We have a better job for you”. The Probation Department needs Probation Officers. “Oh, you have a College Degree. Let’s not waste it.” He got married that April, He started with Probation that January, and realized shortly that he had to make more money than he was making. He hadn’t planned on his wife working and thought she should remain in the home, He was covering Children’s Court and visiting with Mr. Shirtenlieb Islip’s Superintendent and Dr. Hoyt a couple of times each week and had a large number of students on a list to visit each week. They both wanted to get George working for the School District as a Counselor. They created a new job for a Certified Attendance Teacher but no certification was yet published. Dr Hoyt said, “Do you want a job? George asked Dr Hoyt”, Do you want your office back”? He had been sharing space in Dr Hoyt’s office interviewing kids. They made him an offer he couldn’t refuse. He was offered a ten month position as Attendance Officer plus the Summer Census and registering kids, a 12 month job with vacation. Terrific! He took it. Meanwhile he would take a test for State Parkway Police with two options - Permanent or Part Time Permanent. He also did the Districts Juvenile Court Work. His career was set by 1955 he became a Part Time (Seasonal) State Policeman and a full time Attendance Teacher and Truant Officer for Brentwood (w/o so much as an interview. Martha Rayberg who was the only other Secretary in the District helped him fill out forms. She had been Leigh Stewart’s Secretary. Marian Young was Dr Hoyt’s Secretary. George was finally given an Office which was a coat closet for the Kindergarten next to the Board Room. They offered to give him Edna Scattini who worked Part Time for the District if she could fit in the room.

George Klein
He was promised a phone because of all the calls they had to make checking on kids since the State paid the district only for kids in attendance. The more kids in school the more State Aid the district received. This was at the same time the anticipated growth of the District was exploding. The numbers were increasing so fast the District was beginning to lose control of the process. The High School was in Bay Shore, 7th and 8th Grade was in Village School, and all the other classrooms were in storefronts and Fire Houses in town. The first Elementary School built and finished was South East Elementary. Jim Mitchell was the Principal. His school was set up and opened before the paint dried. He was all over town in 1955 and 1956 He was in the Presbyterian Church, the Fire House, Episcopal Church, and the Catholic Church Hall etc. Brentwood HS opened in 1957. Next was North East Elementary and Southwest Elementary. This was a frenetic boom time with lines of parents and students out the door to the street all day until 7 pm at night. George also was given the task of coordinating transportation for the district at the very beginning from Guy DiPietro. The district never operated its own bus service. It had a total of four major Contractors over the years and functioned seamlessly all during the energy crisis. Ed Franchi provided major assistance to George with all things transportation as also did Gae Grobluski. They kept all 160 busses running every school day with classes beginning at 7 am and going until to11pm.  
   It is at this point forty-seven minutes into the interview that George begins addressing acceptance of a career position with the District. Thus, in both the interest of time and inclusion what follows in no particular sequence is more cursory an outline of names and events than a life line of experiences included up to now
   His stated consistent purpose from the very beginning had been to have fun with his role and to do whatever he could to avoid becoming embroiled in local/district politics of which there was no shortage.
    Fred Weaver stories were plentiful as were accounts of the long suffering Beryl Knott and her husband Pat. His stories of Confraternity dismissals and Stan Yankowski walking students from the High School to St Anne’s are classic Golden Age reminiscences.
    On one particular Sunday morning Fred Weaver entered the Ross Building to finish some paper work left to complete.. When he arrived he found a dead brown bear seated behind the Principals desk in his chair. It was suspected a certain Industrial Arts Teacher whose initials were RP was somehow behind the plot. There was another occasion when his Ford coup was driven into the auto shop class at the high school for an oil change and all four wheels were welded to the axle from both sides making it impossible to remove a tire to fix a flat.
   Of course there were gangs in Brentwood well before the present threat presented itself. This was a veritable wild west with the syndicate Italian gangs The Monarchs, and Puerto Rican gangs The Enchanters, Spanish defenders of Brentwood’s honor, who brought guns to the street to threaten it’s rural quiet. You will hear how George with his truant officer background and teaching experience with State police connection made inroads into the organizations to broker peace between them, collected weapons and built community support for successful gang dances held in the Parish Hall at St Anne’s. Was he ever afraid to do what he did in Brentwood? Absolutely, recounting evening visits to Edgewood neighborhoods with or without backup running checks on truant youngsters for whose attendance he was responsible. Speaking of working at night, many of the staff members volunteered their time to supervise night programs at the new Southeast Elementary School for such programs as weight-lifting, basket ball, etc. Soon thereafter, the Board of Education authorized future payments to these volunteers for their services. Grants were then received to pay their services. Jack Finan was the night-school supervisor and grant-program supervisor. This all helped the Brentwood Board of Education to convince the Town of Islip to build` its first Recreation Center for serving at-risk kids very well, gaining the kids’ trust.
   When I asked about the making of the 1960’s movie The Challenge of Change at Brentwood High School that included a role for an aspiring young actor named Martin Sheen – he recalled the thick of the action as the District actively sought State and Federal Grants to enhance the new guidance program. Those were the days of the so called Fire House Five, Board of Education, following which one of its members, Ed Sonderling, was immortalized in the naming of the new High School.
    He remembered saving the day on the occasion of a big game when half the basketball team was stuck on Southern State Parkway when their car broke down preventing them from reaching the gym and risking forfeiture of their game. Their coach was jumping for joy when George came speeding onto the grounds of the high school with the rescued team members just in the nick of time
    When Brown vs Board of Education (1954) called attention to the inequities in public education with respect to racial parity, Brentwood was cited for its system of neighborhood schools that resulted in patterns of violations that were deemed unacceptable. South Elementary was located in a predominantly industrial area that was home to many residents of African-American and Hispanic Heritage. When the neighborhood school was ordered closed by the Board its’ students were moved to other schools in the district.
   Conrad Follansbee was the Principal of the High School Annex on Paradise Lane. As the person responsible for keeping records of attendance for all the schools in the district, George knew what Conrad was expected to accomplish. “He was a Saint” is what he said, given the difficulty of his assignment. The South Elementary housed the Alternative School, Special Education Classes, BOCES Classes from the High School, Head Start and some Administrative Offices. To do his job well Mr. Follansbee had to wear many hats. He had to be different people for different clients. As the first home of The Maslow-Toffler School when it was established, George wrote several letters to Conrad complimenting him on the exceptional attendance record achieved by M-T. The better the attendance overall, the more State Aide collected by the District for Brentwood’s taxpayers and ultimately its students. M-T students set an example for the district. The State scheduled several audits of our business practices for successive years. They couldn’t believe the return Brentwood was receiving from the State of New York. They thought we must be doing something illegal. On the contrary, there was nothing wrong. There were simply so many new students being registered for so many years and consistently demonstrating excellent attendance.
   The district was always strict on its residency requirement and the staff worked overtime to make sure they were keeping up with a growing population. In other words, before there was a BTA or BPSO, or before the union or NYSUT was established in Brentwood George and his staff worked seven days a week.
   They were marking their cards, even though they weren’t supposed to. They were damned if they did and damned if they didn’t. Joe Rotollo and his work with data processing sheets was essential to the work George was doing with the census and attendance. Ruth Schulman was a part time Secretary. John Galaris and Evelyn Vannoy were indispensable. The roles filled by Nikkei Ninn with ESL and the Bi-Lingual Program where 54 languages were spoken in the district at that time were vital. Frank Spenser was brought in followed by Moe Green when they worked on the Index. Fred Hose was there.
   When radios were acquired to facilitate the work of the district in 1961 Ed Franchi joined George in Transportation. That was when they were located in the sand pit if anyone remembers. Soon other districts followed George’s example and radios became indispensable.
   Dr Naninni was approached by Everett Reese with a proposal for starting a radio station for students. He rejected the idea. It wasn’t until Guy DiPietro became the first Superintendent of the District that he saw value in petitioning the FCC. Everett and George worked together to make WXBA a reality for many of Brentwood’s students who blazed successful career paths in that direction. It was 88.1 on the dial at 17 ½ watts. It’s now 100 - 180 watts and covers all of Brentwood
   There came a time when our nine person Board was split along philosophical lines and five /four votes on most issues before them was commonplace. George watched as Guy DiPietro who had been a gift to Brentwood from the point at which he arrived was put under increasing stress by his opponents on the Board.
   During those decades political economy and expanding job descriptions became the order of the day. The Board insisted on reducing the number of administrative positions by firings at the top. Gerry Smith, Art Breiger, Dick Avis and others were summarily let go. Following a sharing of their responsibilities fifteen new directors all reported in person to Guy on Thursday of each week. It was as if the Board of Education was trying to kill him.
  During his tenure George watched Sabbaticals disappear though he never asked for or received one. All the while he continued to advance his course work. He received his Guidance Counselor Certification, Supervisor Certificate, his Principals Certification, became an Attendance Teacher, received District Administrators Certification all while attending night courses at various local colleges and universities..The pressure of many of his responsibilities began finally getting to him and he increasingly suffered from migraines. One of the most profound discoveries he made in his time was his ability to build and effectively coordinate teamwork between and among colleagues and employees and the community. He voices opinions on many different subjects and near the end of his career continued unsuccessfully to try building Radio Stations elsewhere. One unfinished dream of his for Brentwood was the creation of an Educational Television Station.. He was and remains a visionary and a champion of futuristic models and methods of progressive public education.

    You can also view any of the past interviews by visiting History Project Interview Archives

View May 8, 2015 History Project Celebration Photo Album

View History Project Slide Show on YouTube


June 5
Executive Board Meeting

June 19
Awards Luncheon

RC 21 Website: http://rc21.ny.aft.org

Sheila & Letty Sustrin
Children's Books Authors

John M. Sherin
Local /Regional
(Jigsaw Maps)600
Geography Manipulatives

Complete Team Building Kits
Teaching Cooperation/ Collaboration
Emotional Intelligence (EQ)

Alida Thorpe
Island Vision Photography, Inc.

Rick Mundy
Watercolor Prints of L.I., Adirondacks, NYC...

Gloria Hannemann
Hardwood Flooring and
Home Improvement

Elmon Kazandjian
NYC Art Gallery

Rose Marie Brousseau
Brentwood Rotary Club

Ronda Brooks
Children's Social Skills Groups