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DATF LogoThe Scarsdale Drug and Alcohol Task Force (DATF) will present Healthy Teen Brain Day at the Scarsdale Middle School Auditorium on Thursday, April 19th from 2:45 to 6:00 PM. All students in grades 5 through 12 are encouraged to participate and parents welcome to attend.

A professional docent assisted by DATF high school volunteers will lead students on a tour through a mega inflatable brain. The docent will discuss the effects of alcohol, marijuana, nicotine and other drugs on brain function and mental, physical, cognitive and social health across the lifespan. An Escape the Vape Room, fun table activities, “foggles” substance use simulators, free food, information and a gift will be provided. Food will also be available for purchase to raise funds for a summer development program for DATF youth members.

Clinicians from White Plains Hospital will be present to answer questions and distribute information. The Scarsdale Police Department will be running a prescription drug take-back event. At 4:20 PM, elected officials will be issuing a proclamation citing April 19th as Healthy Teen Brain Day in Scarsdale.inflatablebrain

A more formal program, including classroom curriculum on brain anatomy, function and development, will be presented to all seventh grade students in science classes on April 19th and 20th, with tours of the mega brain focusing on substance use prevention.

This event was made possible through a wide-ranging collaboration among many different sectors of the Scarsdale community; it has received in-kind support from the Middle School and its Science Department, as well as financial support from White Plains Hospital, Scarsdale Parks and Recreation Department, Maroon and White, and Scarsdale Rotary Club. Scarsdale Edgemont Family Counseling Services and the Scarsdale Police Department also provided in-kind support .

The Drug and Alcohol Task Force are also expanding their online presence to reach a larger audience with more timely information about substance use and its effects on youth brain development and health. They believe that social media can present a biased view of substance use, glamorizing it or downplaying risks. Their goal is to be a resource for accurate information in order to redress some of these biases. They also hope to increase the ability of parents to discuss these issues with their children and youth to access and assimilate well researched information in order to make healthy choices to protect themselves now and into their futures.

These online media platforms will be used to communicate with youths, parents, and other interested groups, providing updated information regarding alcohol, marijuana, e-cigarettes and other substances and their health effects and risks.

Addresses for each site are:

Website: ScarsdaleDATF.com

Facebook: Scarsdale DrugAlcohol TaskForce

Instagram: DAFT_Scarsdale

Snap Chat: Scarsdale DATF

Twitter: @DATF_Scarsdale

You Tube: Scarsdale Drug & Alcohol Task Force

The Task Force strongly recommends that the community follow the DATF on social media and visit the DATF website in order to stay up-to-date on the latest DATF activities, become better educated about these substances and learn about prevention activities being conducted in Scarsdale.

LevyandShannonOver 400 runners participated in races in Scarsdale organized by the Recreation Department on Sunday March 25. The races took place a week earlier than last year, and instead of spring weather, runners actually ran in the snow.

74 children participated in the fun run, 118 people ran the 15K and 202 ran the four mile race. The overall winner of the 15K race was Peter Brady with a time of 53:57 and the overall winner of the 4 mile race was Andrew Levy with a time of 23:13. The overall female winner of the 15K race was Rachel Levine Rilander with a time of 1:03:52 and the first female runner in the 4 mile race was Caroline Shannon with a time of 26:08.

The Recreation Department worked with the Scarsdale Police Department to close off roads and reroute traffic, with the Public Works Department to repair potholes to prevent injuries and SVAC to care for any who were injured.

We took a few photos of the runners warming up after they completed the course in the high school cafeteria.

(Pictured at left: Caroline Shannon and Andrew Levy)

Did you run? Please send your photos to scarsdalecomments@gmail.com to share below.

eliseboucher2

Elise Boucher placed second in the 4-mile runGrubers3Steve Gruber (4th Place Men 60-69) and Liz Gruber (1st Place Women 60-69)Dellacava2The Dellacava Family - Nicole, second from right, placed 5th overall among females in the 4 mile run

simoneSimone Wiener finished 4th (women's 40-49), Marcy Engel finished first (women's 50-59)

rilandersracePictured (left to right) Adam,Sydney,Rachel and Noah Rilander. Rachel was the first female runner in the 15K race.

 Team WeRun

TeamWeRunTeam WeRun

This year more than twenty members of Team WeRun participated in the 48th Scarsdale 15K & 4M Runs. The team performed well, with three age group first places and one age group third place.

First Place, 15K M40-49, Shangyuan Luo, 00:58:38
Third Place, 15K M30-39, Wengang Ji, 01:03:55
Fourth Place, 15K M30-39, Meiliang Wu, 01:04:57
First Place, 15K F30-39, XiaoJuan Hu, 01:07:00
First Place, 4M F40-49, Hongwei Zhou, 00:31:23

The team practices regularly along the beautiful Bronx River Parkway trail on Saturday mornings. For more information, please contact Lisa Tan at lisatan@yahoo.com.

werunwinnersWeRun Winners

 

shsberke1The 2018 School Board Nominating Committee (SBNC) has completed its process of recruiting, vetting and selecting two nominees for the 2018 non-partisan slate for election to the Scarsdale Board of Education. There was a robust and highly talented candidate pool, from which the SBNC selected Woodrow (Woody) Crouch and Alison Singer. If elected during the school board election on May 15, 2018, Crouch and Singer will assume their roles as first term school board members effective July 1, 2018.

The SBNC is a non-partisan committee composed of 30 voting members (six from each of the five election districts corresponding with the elementary school districts) and four non-voting members. Over the course of Sunday meetings from January through March, this year's committee conducted extensive candidate outreach to encourage interested community members to apply, listened to applicant presentations, conducted detailed due diligence on all applicants, and considered potential candidates' qualifications. Pursuant to the SBNC Resolution, committee deliberations concerning candidates are confidential.

Through thoughtful discussion and consideration, and pursuant to the SBNC Resolution, the SBNC "judged and selected [candidates] solely on their qualifications to serve the community." This engaged and focused practice resulted in the nomination of two outstanding candidates, Crouch and Singer.

AlisonScarsdaleThe SBNC congratulates the 2018 nominees and thanks all applicants who put themselves forward for candidacy. "I thank the entire SBNC, all applicants, and the Scarsdale community for their commitment to the Scarsdale School system and educational excellence," noted Liz Guggenheimer, 2018 SBNC Chair.

Commenting on her nomination, Singer said, "I'm very honored to have been nominated for school board by the SBNC. Both of my daughters benefited tremendously from their experiences as students in Scarsdale. I look forward to working with the other school board members, with administrators and with members of the community to keep our schools robust, healthy and safe learning environments."

Singer is Co-Founder and President of the Autism Science Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to funding innovative autism research and supporting the needs of people with autism. She has lived in the Quaker Ridge section of Scarsdale for 18 years with her husband Dan and daughters Jodie, 20 and Lauren, 18. She graduated magna cum laude from Yale University with a B.A. in Economics and has an MBA from Harvard Business School.

Singer has been an active volunteer in Scarsdale. She served on the SBNC for three years, and then as Vice Chair of the SBNC Administrative Committee, Chair of the SBNC Administrative Committee and Chair of the SBNC Joint Committee. She also served on the BOE Committees on Special Education and Preschool Special Education, as well as on the search committee for the district's Director of Special Education and Student Services. She also served as Co-chair of Scarsdale CHILD for two terms.

Crouch2Mr. Crouch has a BS from the US Merchant Marine Academy and a Master of Science Mechanical Engineering from Columbia University and is a licensed Professional Engineer in the State of New York. He was a Vice President at the New York Power Authority in charge of engineering and construction where he oversaw complex and often contentious power plant construction projects in NYC. He also has a deep experience working with unions. Since retiring he has served as a Vice President at Skanska, AECOM and Noble Environmental Power. He founded and is CEO of DC Transmission Partners, LLC.

He has served in various Scarsdale organizations. He served on the Drake Edgewood Association as a member of the Board of Governors and as President, on the Scarsdale Neighborhood Association of Presidents as Chairman, chaired the Edgewood Athletic Association and coached girls and boys basketball, soccer and softball teams. He is a Committee Member of Boy Scouts Troop 2 and a Merit Badge Counselor. He was on the Board of Directors and Treasurer of IHM CCD program. Woody and his wife Mary managed the Edgewood Fair. He served on the United States Committee on Large Dams as chairman of the Construction Committee and later as President. He was a member of the Water Power Steering Committee. Woody served two terms as Chairman of the Sturge-Weber Foundation (SWF) and is now a Board member. The SWF helps families cope with this rare disease and supports research dedicated to find a cure. He and Mary have lived in Scarsdale over 40 years. They have two children and eight grandchildren. Five of the grandchildren are in Scarsdale Schools.

If elected, the two candidates will replace Arthur Rublin who will complete his first term in June and declined to run for a second term on the School Board and Pam Fuehrer who will complete one term on the School Board in June, 2018.

Please remember to vote on Tuesday, May 15, 2018 in the school board election, the same day as the 2018-2019 school budget vote. For more information on the SBNC, including the governing Resolution, please visit the SBNC website at www.scarsdalesbnc.com or contact the SBNC Chair.

walkout1(This article was written by SHS Student Emmeline Berridge)
Scarsdale High School, March 14th, 9:00 am
: Hundreds of students stood up in the middle a lesson, walked out of their classrooms, and flooded toward the turf field like fish swimming against the current. Despite the sheer number of students in participation, the masses remained silent. As a student and participant, I felt an awe-inspiring feeling of pride for the support and strength of my classmates. Here we all were, enduring the frigid 20-degree morning as a class united in reverence and protest.

In the wake of the devastating mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida last month, Scarsdale students joined thousands of high school students across the country to participate in the National Walkout for Gun Control. A student government organized event, Scarsdale walkout was a both a memorial to commemorate the lives lost in the shooting and a political protest to address the pressing issue of gun reform in public schools. At 9:55 am students were invited to walk out of their classes and join a 17-minute memorial service, one minute for each life lost in the mass shooting. The 17 minutes were followed by a series of political speeches by Scarsdale students.

The memorial was somber, chilling, inspiring, and grief-stricken. After an introduction to the protest, 17 Scarsdale students read the biographies of the 17 people lost in the massacre. Each Scarsdale student presenter corresponded with the age and gender of the victim, creating a chilling appreciation for the life.

Unfortunately, our community had a distinct connection to the tragedy in Scott Beigel. Beigel was a geography teacher at Douglas who was shot protecting the lives of his students. He was also a division leader at Camp Starlight, a popular summer camp in Maine. Several Scarsdale students, who were close with Beigel from their summers at Starlight, spoke about Scott in admiration and heartache. Junior Chessy Greenwald shared her personal connection with Scott, providing a tangible sense of grief during the ceremony: “Scott Beigel touched me and each of my friends in his own way. His ability to tell a story or make the weirdest things seem cool are what made this so difficult. I, along with all of my friends, am stronger and a better person because of Scott.”walkout2

Scarsdale For Good Measure Acapella group closed the ceremony with a soulful rendition of “Lift Every Voice.” Though the crowd of students remained silent for the entirety of the memorial, a sentiment of camaraderie was ever present.

After the memorial, students were given the option to go back to their classes before a political debate ensued. Many students left, but the majority stayed to listen to the speeches. Several students said they “didn’t agree that the message of the memorial and the message of gun control were in the same conversation. ”

Personally, I felt that it was completely appropriate and respectful to divide the walkout into two parts. The division allowed students to honor the victims and show their support for the community, while also staying true to their own beliefs and morals. The political portions featured speeches from Senior Anna Rubin, who discussed her frustration with the current political institutions, citing alternative methods of gun control in other countries, and Sophomore Daniella Paz, who provided insight into the stigmatization of mental illness in situations such as Nicolas Cruz’s.

If this walkout has taught the Scarsdale community one thing, it should be that our students are strong. Our students are bright. Our students are willing to take action, in unity with our entire generation, to help incite change. Parkland, an affluent community filled with brilliant teenagers, is completely comparable to Scarsdale.

These events brought forth the fear that in reality, no one is immune to these tragedies. On February 15th, the day after the shooting, a fire alarm blared throughout the halls of Scarsdale High School. The ringing of the bell on this snowy morning sent a chill down my spine; it was eerily similar to the events in Florida the day before. I should not have been afraid for my life in a place that I am required to go each day. I should not have been afraid for my life in a place that teaches teenagers the benefits of peace and reconciliation. Like every other teenager post-Parkland, I have a sense of fear that only substantial change can erase.

janeandjustinCandidates for Village Trustee participated in a spirited but civil public forum at Village Hall on Tuesday night March 6. Hosted by the League of Women Voters and moderated by Stephen Cohen, the candidates shared information on their backgrounds, their experience and their reasons for wishing to serve Scarsdale.

Scarsdale has a non-partisan system whereby candidates are selected by a representative committee of nominators. This is intended to preclude partisan politics and heated elections. However, in the past several years, contested elections have become the norm, as contenders are stepping up to challenge the slate of candidates put forward by the Scarsdale Citizens' Non-Partisan Party.

In 2017, Robert Berg and three candidates formed the "Voters Choice Party" and ran a complete slate for Mayor and Village Trustees. They were defeated 2-1 in a very contentious election. This year only Berg is back, vying to win one of the three open spots for Village Trustee.

Running on the Scarsdale Citizens' Non-Partisan Party slate are Jane Veron, who is running for her second two-year term, along with Justin Arest and Lena Crandall who are running for their first terms.

During the forum, Berg challenged both the CNC candidates and Scarsdale's system of ruling by consensus,LenaandBob claiming, "The system is broken in town... the CNC (Citizens' Nominating Committee) is a relic of another age – I don't believe in it." Referring to the candidates chosen via the CNC nominating process, Berg said, "It should not be handed to them on a silver platter." Crandall later answered Berg's claim, explaining that the SCNP slate was "Carefully selected by the non-partisan committee to complement people already on the board." Arest said, "The CNC process was contested. Five people came forward .... they called our references. I could not be more proud to be a Scarsdalian and to be part of the process."

Replying to questions posed by the League and the public, each candidate gave their perspective on the issues and presented their qualifications for addressing the business of Scarsdale.

Building on her two years as Village Trustee, Veron discussed her role in establishing better communications between the Village and residents, her work on downtown development, the public/private partnership for the library and her recent role, as head of the Municipal Services Committee in negotiating a new proposal for sanitation pick-up to include food scraps. She called herself a "change agent" who believes in the power of collaboration to get things done.

Crandall stressed her ability to listen, learn and work respectfully with others. She said, "This is not about what we want as individuals ... it's what's best of the community." As an example, she discussed her term as President of the Friends of the Scarsdale Parks, an opinionated group who she called her "hot cups of coffee." In order to get things done she said, "We followed a process, we allowed everyone to speak. We only took action after we did research. It takes respect, it takes trust."

cooperandcohenArest shared his perspective as a newer resident in town and said he was welcomed to serve and has worked on the Board of the Library, on the Zoning Board of Appeals, on the Village budget and the Freightway Steering Committee. He said, "We need to come together with fresh ideas to make this community better."

Berg was more provocative in his approach. He criticized the Village for the revaluation, the roads (which he said resembled Damascus) the proposed tree law and a consultant's report on the assessor's office. The report evaluated the assessor's office and among other measures recommended customer service training and videos to help residents understand the assessment and grievance processes. About the report Berg said, "I would take all the copies of the report and put them in the fireplace of someone who doesn't have heat to provide warmth to their home."

Berg took issue with the concept of building consensus, saying, "I don't believe in the process of consensus. We get the wrong answer because we try to reach consensus. We have to explore all the arguments, look at the angles, take a vote and the majority should rule. That's a great weakness here; everyone has to be kumbaya. That's why the Village Attorney let us violate the constitution and the Village Board let him trample our constitutional rights."

There was general agreement in the need to balance the level of services with the restraints of the budget and not to raise taxes. Speaking about preservation, there was consensus on the need to balance the needs of the community with the homeowners' rights to improve their properties. Crandall said, "It's complicated – we have to work together to find a balance between what we love about Scarsdale and all of our property rights. Arest said as a member of the Zoning Board of Appeals he saw the need for changes to the setback laws to reduce the sizes of new homes. Berg said there were "Loopholes in the FAR (floor-area-ratio) code" for dormers and garages that needed to be dealt with immediately. He later said, "Scarsdale is a bit too pro developer. We bend over backwards to give them loopholes. We let them get away with that. We seem to be afraid when threatened with litigation."

Proposed modifications to the tree code, which prohibits the removal of protected trees, assesses fees for the removal of healthy trees and requires the planting of replacement trees came under attack. Berg said, "The Board is about to ram through a tree ordinance that is going to exacerbate the current emergency where trees are crashing down. Come out (to the hearing) on March 13-- you are going to pay large fees." Veron responded, "We never ram anything through. We scheduled a hearing to listen to the public. I spent today talking to residents about their tress and the power lines. The law is primarily to prohibit developers from clear cutting properties."

Asked how they would improve storm response in the future, Veron said, "The most important piece is communication. The Village staff has been working around the clock since it happened. The #1 goal is communication."

Arest agreed that the Department of Public Works does a great job, but said, "Our problem is Con Edison. This is unacceptable. They called in their shared services too late. We need to push our local representatives and hold hearings."

Crandall said she was a part of the Scarsdale Community Support Council and that the group could do more to help residents and provide warming centers.

Berg said, "Storms are predictable. I have lived through many of these. We have to cut the trees near the power lines. It's going to happen again and again. We don't have adequate shelter. Open the high school gym for people."

All the candidates appeared well prepared to speak on a range of issues including public safety, assessments, development, budgeting, management and more. Given the fact that the forum was held when many were without power, it drew a reasonably sized audience. But in general this election has not mobilized as many residents as the one last year.

The election will be held on Tuesday March 20 at Scarsdale Library. Voting hours are 6 am to 9 am and noon to 9 pm. A post election reception will be held at the Scarsdale Woman's Club at 37 Drake Road from 8:30 to 10 pm. The public is invited and the event is hosted by the Scarsdale Citizen's Non-Partisan Party.

Watch the forum on SPTV here.

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