Putting Meaning Behind The Numbers


Christine Costa focuses on collaboration, capital plan

When it comes to crunching numbers, Christine Costa has it covered. Costa took over as assistant superintendent for finance and operations for the Westbury School District on Sept. 7, with previous roles as a business administrator or manager in Middle Country, Smithtown, Plainedge and, most recently, Syosset.

She said she was drawn to the Westbury School District because she was looking to use her years of experience in a community where she could make a difference.

Christine Costa

“I’m a CPA by trade and I worked at different public entities before I entered the school world. That’s where I found meaning, in supporting the educational goals for schools,” Costa said. “I’ve been part of the school world for 17 years and my desire to have a greater impact in communities and students has only grown.”

Prior to entering the field of education, Costa worked as a public accountant at JP Morgan and the Town of Huntington. She said while she was very interested in the financial services field, there was a “nagging desire to have meaning behind the numbers.”

Now, Costa takes the helm of managing the district’s finances, as well as does state reporting, makes sure facilities are in order and supports staff roles through the business office. It’s a job that’s especially important as the district heads into budget season.

“It’s a collaborative process,” said Costa. “The budget represents the educational vision of the school through numbers. We’re supporting the vision of the board, superintendent and community, and the needs of the students. We’re going to use everyone’s knowledge and experience to make sure we’re meeting all those needs.”

Another one of Costa’s priorities is developing a capital plan for the district that will address the enrollment growth.

“We have to make sure we can serve all our students in a space that contributes to their success,” she said. “That’s a big goal. Implementation will take a long time, but the plan will take us forward.”

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Betsy Abraham is the former senior managing editor at Anton Media Group and editor of The Westbury Times and Massapequa Observer. She also wrote for Long Island Weekly.

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