It’s now Boquet Valley Central School District; big changes afoot for Elizabethtown, Lewis, Westport

ELIZABETHTOWN — The newly formed Elizabethtown/Lewis-Westport school district now has a new name, Boquet Valley Central School District, a new superintendent, Joshua R. Meyer, and new colors of navy blue and gold.

As for the school name, the decision was not made until Monday’s meeting as the school board was undecided.

About 100 people waited curiously for the decision.

An exit poll at the May 21 budget vote was conducted, as well as student polls, in which voters could state their preferences for the district’s name, colors and mascot.

The name choices were Eastern Adirondack Central School District and Boquet Valley Central School District, both of which were deemed acceptable by the New York State Education Department.

Westport High School junior Laurence Lobdell addressed the board supporting the Boquet Valley moniker, saying, “Boquet Valley is an original name. No other district in the nation or world could be called this. Eastern Adirondack is so bland. (Boquet Valley is) a perfect symbol as the river connects the towns. It’s a bridge between the people.”

Lobdell ended his plea with, “EA, No way!”

Tom Koehler, current Westport school board member, spoke on behalf of Eastern Adirondack. He felt using “Adirondack” gave instant recognition and would be an asset to graduates when they indicated their high school.

The board voted unanimously to go with Boquet Valley.

The school mascot will be the Griffin, which has already been utilized by the combined sports teams, though additional detail may be added to the logo.

Champlain Valley Educational Services Superintendent Mark Davey, who also has been serving as interim ELW superintendent, informed the board that the state requires the new district to include “at Elizabethtown-Lewis and Westport” in its name for any official documents.

To which Meyer quipped, “We will need longer school buses.”

Superintendent vote

For the “Meyer for superintendent” vote, board members Philip Mero, Dina Garvey, Heather Reynolds, Suzanne Russell and Sarah Kullman voted in favor while Alan Jones and Karin DeMuro voted no.

Scott Osborne, who serves as the Elizabethtown-Lewis Central School District superintendent, and Brent Suddaby from West Genesee School District in the western part of the state had also been in the running.

Meyer, who will be under contract for three years, will receive a salary of $130,000, with the following two years negotiated at a later date. He currently serves as the Westport superintendent and principal.

To be decided at the next board meeting will be official building designations. Lake View Campus and Mountain View Campus, or Sisco Street Campus and Court Street Campus are under consideration.

Vals and sals

Another issue for the new district, brought up by Elizabethtown teacher/adviser Kaitlin Fielder as well as two students, was the possibility of co-valedictorians and salutatorians: one from each current school district.

Concerns revolved around the possibility that each current district may have different grading standards. It was decided that this will be the policy for the first three years of the district.