July 8, 2015 “The East Ramapo school board is parting ways after six years with Minerva and D’Agostino, the pricey Long Island-based law firm that many say added to an already volatile atmosphere in the district. The board hired New York City-based Harris Beach as its new legal representative Tuesday at a 7 p.m. reorganization meeting that drew more than 100 people, including Judith Johnson, the Lower Hudson Valley’s representative on the state Board of Regents, and Family Court Judge Sherri Eisenpress.
Many residents at the meeting held signs criticizing Superintendent Joel Klein and Yehuda Weissmandl, who was appointed for another term as board president.The board hired Harris Beach by a vote of 6-0, with two abstentions and one member absent. East Ramapo had been spending nearly $1,000 a day on the high-powered firm. The Journal News reported last year that D’Agostino’s firm had billed the district $322,000 for services and travel just between July 2013 and May 2014. When the firm was hired in 2009, it was at twice the rate the district’s previous law firm had been paid.”Mr. D’Agostino has stood as a symbol of the unresponsive, disrespectful manner in which the East Ramapo leadership has treated the district’s families,” said Andrew Mandel, co-founder of the activist group Strong East Ramapo. “Replacing his firm, something the school board promised to do two years ago after a particularly despicable episode toward parents, is a long overdue beginning to a total overhaul of the district.” Read the complete Journal News coverage here.