Longwood School Board meets amid gang label controversy

Posted: Updated:
MIDDLE ISLAND -

Parents sounded off Thursday night about Gov. Andrew Cuomo's plan to use state troopers to battle gang violence in the Longwood Central School District.

Cuomo last month placed the district's high school and middle school on a list of 10 schools that will receive gang prevention units in the form of state troopers. The distinction did not sit well with parents and teachers, who say the schools do not have a gang problem.

"You call the police when there's an emergency," says Tiffany Georgio, of Coram. "We're a good school district. That's not who we are."

The governor's office later acknowledged that there is currently no known gang activity in the district, but James Hoffman, of Middle Island, says he already knew that.

"My grandkids go here. Would I have my grandkids go here? They are 6 and 7," Hoffman says.

But the governor's plan remains, even though it is still not clear how or when a state trooper would be assigned to the post. Despite the initial response upon hearing the news, the Longwood school administration and school board now say they will work with the governor's office.

A district spokesperson says the superintendent is expected to speak with Cuomo's office next week. News 12 also reached out to the governor's office for comment but did not hear back.

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