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Residential Advice Needed: MS Field Trip

Middle School mother needs help deciding on a field trip.

Editor's Note: The following was contributed via email.  If you'd like to get the community's input on a specific topic, email your question to anthonyv@patch.com.

My son attends Beach Street MS and is in 6th grade. There is going to be a sleep away field trip to Frost Valley in May and I would like to hear from parents in the community whose children have previously attended this trip what their impressions were.

The trip is costly, about $300, and many parents have expressed concern about adequate supervision. I would like to get feedback from parents whose children have already attended this trip.

A.J. Voelpel January 27, 2012 at 08:59 PM
One comment from Facebook: "My son went last year..and my 6th grader is going this year . It was a great experience.!!!!. Teachers supervision was excellent.. my son is a very picky eater and being around his friends and teachers he tried different foods. My son could ...not stop talking about the different activities, rock climbing walls etc.. that the teachers also did with them ..The teachers are with them every step of the way. Highly recommend it!!!"
A.J. Voelpel January 27, 2012 at 09:02 PM
Another: "My girls went and it was a wonderful experience. Supervision was really good. The chaperons all do a great job. I can understand your concern but I can not say enough nice things about this trip. It's just enough time away for both of you. I highly recommend it."
Gayle Amico January 27, 2012 at 09:13 PM
My older daughter went to Frost Valley so I can easily tell you about her experience that year, but yet feel it is unnecessary. I don't know if you attended the meeting last night and/or received the packet that they handed out. All the pertinent information was given to us last night as well as in writing. The trip is not $300, it is about $260 - $280 and the more kids that go the less it will be. Think about what you are getting for your money. A three day, two night stay at a top resort, which includes food, recreation, full time medical care, guides, buses back and forth, not to mention a great experience that not only they have been waiting for but they will remember forever. This trip has been run for many years at Beach Street as well as many, many schools on Long Island. I even went to Frost Valley on my 6th grade trip over 28 years ago. Frost Valley has been around since 1901 and has a great reputation. If you look at the packet and see all the work that the teachers put into I think it is unfair to second guess their capabilities. These are the same people you entrust your children to everyday. These teachers are VOLUNTEERING their time to go away with our children and take time away from their families to be there. So I hope that puts to ease your "concern about their supervision" I could say so much more but I really hope that said it all!!
trish clarke January 27, 2012 at 09:18 PM
Wow what a response...
Maureen January 28, 2012 at 12:13 AM
I agree...Nicely put Gayle.
Donna Borchick January 28, 2012 at 12:32 PM
I agree Gail, two of my children went several years ago at different times. They both had a great time. My grandson will go this year and both my children told him he'd have a great time. Say what you want about the district, but when it comes to the individual teacher, they really give a damm about the trip and all the components with regard to the individual student. I am encouraging him to go.
Mark January 28, 2012 at 03:29 PM
Frost Valley is a great experience for the kids. It is part of growing up - let your child experience it. It could be considered costly, but for $260-280 what your child will get from the trip is priceless. The Frost Valley has been hosting schools for a very long time. The West Islip teachers (who go) are committed to a great trip for the kids and themselves. The staff at Frost Valley help to ensure they do. My daughter went and came back from the WI trip so charged up she couldn't stop smiling for days. The hikes, projects, nature, waterfalls, team activities, group projects, laughing singing and learning life lessons all in a safe, supervised environment. To get an idea see this "thank you" video ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2_snulAqcrw ) that Abby Miller (who was a secret special guest) gave to the kids from Sayville. It will show you a great deal about your childs trip. (Abby is a special kid, and she was the last nights character speaker - more info about her here: http://www.abbymillermusic.com/site/#/about-abby/about-abby/ )
Bob Eddings January 30, 2012 at 01:46 PM
Thank you for all the amazing responses regarding the Frost Valley Trip. I want to share that our goal at the Frost Valley YMCA is to provide for our schools a place for hands-on education to help students become environmentally literate and to give them the leadership tools and practice to learn to speak up for themselves and the environment. I have the honor of working with so many schools from Suffolk and Nassau Counties (and was a William Floyd HS graduate myself). We can provide a physical environment so different from our Island and so pristine it reminds us how we should treat the Earth. For those who do not have the chance to travel, we truly can show them a different experience. Many children today are losing their ability to problem solve and much of our curriculum focuses on problem solving and developing community to help foster an environment in the school that allows for safe opportunities to do so. Each year, I look forward to working with Jesse Fawess and the teachers and students from Beach Street.
Dawn January 30, 2012 at 05:45 PM
That was a bit harsh - don't you think!! To answer your question my opinion it was a great trip and very well supervised!! I was just as concerned as you are but it was a great experience for my son and we are happy we made the decision for him to attend. :)
Maureen January 30, 2012 at 09:15 PM
She wasn't being harsh. She was expressing her excitement and support of the teachers running the trip.

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