Dan Hust | Democrat
The former Delaware Valley campus of Sullivan West, located off Route 97 north of Callicoon, may soon become part of the Flushing-based Windsor School, a private high school.
New school on the way?
Story by Dan Hust
CALLICOON Sullivan West’s long-closed Delaware Valley campus has a buyer.
SW’s board voted 5-2 Monday night to accept Emily Yu’s offer to buy the Callicoon school for $1,160,000, about half the campus’ appraised value.
Board President Mary Scheutzow said Yu represents Windsor International Housing, Inc., which runs the Windsor School in Flushing, Queens.
Located not far from the Mets’ Citi Field, the private middle/high school caters to American, Chinese, Japanese, Spanish, Vietnamese and Korean students with a full curriculum, including sports, arts, music and driver’s ed.
“Every Windsor graduate has been admitted to one or more American universities,” says its website, www.thewindsorschool.com.
Yu did not return a call for comment at press time, but Scheutzow believes her intention is to relocate the private school to DV.
Sources say Yu has also successfully negotiated a purchase of around 60 neighboring acres from Richard Winter, who bought that acreage from SW last year in anticipation of expanding his farming operations.
Neither sale has been consummated yet, however, with Scheutzow hoping to have a contract written up and signed by next month. Yu, she said, desires to close on the campus and the 11 SW-owned acres by March 1.
If the closing happens before July 1, however, the district stands to lose upwards of $90,000 in state building aid, said Scheutzow.
While the sale will more than cover that amount, the proceeds by law must go into a fund to pay down district debt, she added.
Taxes won’t decrease or increase as a result of the sale, but that potential aid loss prompted SW board member Ken Cohen to cast one of the two dissenting votes Monday night.
“I would have been happy with the sales price she gave us,” Cohen said of Yu, “if we were closing on July 1.”
Cohen said the board majority disagreed, worried that Yu might back out of the sale if she had to wait. He disagreed.
“I think she’s gone through enough due diligence,” Cohen observed. “... I think she’s really serious.”
Rose Joyce-Turner was the other dissenting vote and again, it was not about being against Yu or the sale itself.
“I just thought we could negotiate a little longer,” Joyce-Turner explained. “I thought we pulled the plug a little too soon.”
That said, she’ll be glad to see the building handed over to a for-profit, taxpaying entity and taken off the district’s hands.
“It’s just costing the taxpayers money every year,” she noted.
“The money we save will certainly help us as we start to put together next year’s budget,” added Scheutzow, who said she’s “relieved” at the potential sale but not quite ready to “pop the champagne” cork quite yet.
Board members Joan Glase, Kathy Meckle, Lucas Arzilli and Rachel Brey joined Scheutzow in casting “yes” votes. Board member Angela Daley was absent, and the late Noel van Swol’s seat remains vacant.
The agreed-upon $1.16 million price tag is more than a million dollars below DV’s appraised value of $2.3 million.
“In a different world, would we want a better price? Sure,” Scheutzow stated. “But we haven’t exactly been inundated with interest.”
Indeed, the other closed campus in Narrowsburg has yet to secure serious offers, though real estate agent John Hector continues to show it to interested parties, as he did DV.