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December 9, 2019
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Schools

Rye Neck High School students Gabriel Miller, Owen Robertson, and Sean Diamond received proclamation awards for theirresearch on public perceptions of water quality.
Rye Neck High School students Gabriel Miller, Owen Robertson, and Sean Diamond received proclamation awards for theirresearch on public perceptions of water quality.

Rye Neck High Students Take Ethical Look At Area's Water

How often do you think about the water you drink?  Residents of Larchmont and Mamaroneck "understand and value" theirs, according to a "public perceptions" survey done by student activists at Rye Neck High School.

The students, junior Gabriel Miller and seniors Sean Diamond and Owen Robertson, and graduates Andrew Alcin, Renue Chin and Ryan Germani belong to a student-run think tank called the Action Research for Community Change. In 2018, they were asked to carry out a "consumer confidence survey" for the Westchester Joint Water Works—WJMM, at numerous locations in the two towns regarding the tap water.

The Action Research for Community Change team, facilitated by Valerie Feit, the K-12 enrichment coordinator and co-director of school counseling, is a "Tools for Change" program that uses social science research methods to support policy decisions for local organizations.

“The purpose of Action Research is to address community issues by teaching students how to conduct ethical research that influences policy development for the common good,” Dr. Feit said. “The findings from this study clearly demonstrated that local community members understand and value the quality of the water we use. The final report was submitted to WJWW for use in their informational materials.”

“The findings from this study clearly demonstrated that local community members understand and value the quality of the water we use. The final report was submitted to (Westchester Join Water Works) for use in their informational materials," Feit said.

The students and Feit were recognized for the initiative by Town of Mamaroneck Supervisor Nancy Seligson and Paul Kutzy, manager of Westchester Joint Water Works with a proclamation in September.