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Grand Avenue Student’s Invention Wows Judges

Grand Avenue Student’s Invention Wows Judges photo
When Family & Consumer Science teacher Sarah Norton challenged her students to become innovators, Grand Avenue Middle School student Allison Alvarez jumped at the opportunity. 

The seventh-grader created her own company, Bow Wow Bowties – clip-on harness/collar wear for canines – along with an accompanying video presentation.

“I thought this would be a good product because a lot of people enjoy putting clothes on their dogs,” Alvarez explained. “However, my pug, Rocky, does not like wearing clothes. With this clip-on bowtie, if you attach it to their harness, the dog doesn’t even notice it.”

Alvarez won $100 in the Masters of Invention competition’s entrepreneurship category and will be presented with an award at the Long Island Family & Consumer Science Professionals conference on April 20. Her product was chosen out of nearly 50 submissions.

Her process involved finding a target audience, profit margins, as well as researching materials and adhesives. 

“I decided on felt and used a hot glue gun to adhere the embellishments,” she explained. “It then attaches via a clip or Bobbie pin to the dog’s harness.”

Norton has been working with fellow educators to facilitate the district’s enrichments opportunities in Technology and Family and Consumer Science at the middle school level, which includes Creative Coding and Introduction to entrepreneurship classes.

During the Introduction to Entrepreneurship course, students can begin to explore career possibilities in a variety of business and professional settings.

“Allison is a bright young woman and is just the kind of student we need in our entrepreneurship classes,” Norton added. “Her creativity and out-of-the box way of thinking will be essential in problem-solving and developing our class business plan.”

Meadowbrook Students Prep for Shakespeare Festival

Meadowbrook Students Prep for Shakespeare Festival photo
Meadowbrook Students Prep for Shakespeare Festival photo 2
Meadowbrook Students Prep for Shakespeare Festival photo 3
Meadowbrook Students Prep for Shakespeare Festival photo 4
As with most theatrical productions, the annual Shakespeare Festival at the Meadowbrook Alternative Program takes months to prepare.

“Especially now that we do most of it pre-taped, it involves many hands and a lot of volunteering,” explained English teacher and organizer Laura Sheridan. 

It also requires the generosity of people throughout the district.”

The creation of a green screen wall will enable students to film larger, more active scenes from the works of William Shakespeare, she explained. 

However, it can and will be put to good use for future MAP projects.

“The supplies needed to create the wall and to purchase audio/visual equipment were provided through a grant from the Community Parent Center,” added Sheridan. “We will be using it to create projects such as PSAs for health class, newscasts for social studies, study aides for AP courses, etc. The possibilities across the curriculum are endless.”

Since a mid-March trip to see “Julius Caesar” performed at Classic Stage Company, Sheridan’s Shakespeare class has been working on scripts for plays they will be using in this year’s festival, including “As You Like It,” “Julius Caesar,” “The Merchant of Venice,” “The Winter’s Tale,” “Antony & Cleopatra,” “Much Ado About Nothing” and “Romeo & Juliet.” 

“The students have been helping me edit scripts and create stage directions and prop requirements,” Sheridan added. “They have also been working as my stage crew, creating props from scratch as well as from older props. They have also been updating and reworking costumes.”

They have also been using MAP’s new Maker Space equipment, which was funded by the Bellmore Lions Club to create the three boxes (lead, silver, and gold) required for their upcoming scene from “The Merchant of Venice.” 

Students painted and upholstered an old donated chair to create a golden throne for King Leontes in “The Winter’s Tale” and they are currently repainting it to make something different for Cleopatra’s throne.

“The students have also put together an intricate model of Shakespeare’s Globe Theater, and they themselves will be creating a script and video about the history and workings of Elizabethan theater.”

MAMS Student Competes on “Genius Junior” TV Show

MAMS Student Competes on “Genius Junior” TV Show photo
Norah Petrozak, the Merrick Avenue Middle School seventh-grader knows how to spell supercalifragilisticexpialidocious – backwards!

It was this academic talent that earned her a spot on a team on “Genius Junior,” the TV game show that celebrates and challenges school-aged competitors.

The show taped during the summer 2017, but aired on April 8 on NBC. Petrozak called it an “amazing, but nerve-wracking experience.”

“Meeting the host, Neil Patrick Harris during the show was comforting,” she added. “He was very comical and made us feel less nervous.”

While science is her favorite subject in school, it was the area of spelling that she excelled at on the show. Although her team did not win, Petrozak said it was the experience of a lifetime.

Until her next big break, she will focus on tennis, piano, chorus and her studies – with science being her favorite subject.

Musical Season Hits High Notes in Bellmore-Merrick

Musical Season Hits High Notes in Bellmore-Merrick photo

When it comes to March Madness in the Central High School District, they are not talking about basketball — it’s musical time!

Five schools mounted major Broadway style productions and even the snow couldn’t stop the community from packing the auditoriums for these evenings of pure entertainment.

The season kicked off with the middle school productions, March 15-16: “The Addams Family Musical” at Grand Avenue Middle School and “Bye, Bye Birdie” at Merrick Avenue Middle School. The following week, the high school students took to the stage on March 23-24, featuring productions of the timeless classic, “Fiddler on the Roof” at Kennedy High School; Andrew Lloyd Webber’s hit “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” at Calhoun High School; and “In the Heights” at Mepham High School, marking one of the first high schools on Long Island to produce this show.

No matter the school or production, being a part of the drama program is a life altering experience.

“When working on a musical, time tends to move differently, as if the show exists in a type of vacuum,” said Mepham High School Director Edward Grosskreuz. “For example, when rehearsing and coordinating all of the various elements (construction, prop creation, costumes, lighting, sound, publicity, tickets, etc.), it seems like a never-ending process. Yet when the actual week of the production, tech week, arrives, the entire company finds itself moving at light-speed as it prepares to present its performance. When the production wraps, it seems as if time had passed so quickly, and the feeling of that long stretch leading up to show time seems like it never existed. It's a surreal experience. From a director's standpoint, it is so rewarding to see the company bonding through their positive interactions as well as their enthusiasm for the piece being developed for performance.  When the company is in harmony with the work, magic happens. With this in place, the company's energy radiates from the stage and electrifies the audience.”




Department of World Languages Announces District-Wide Contest Winners

Department of World Languages Announces District-Wide Contest Winners photo
Department of World Languages Announces District-Wide Contest Winners photo 2
world language photo
world language photo
world language photo
The Department of World Languages would like to congratulate the participants and winners of our fourth annual district-wide contest. 

Students in grades 7-12 submitted entries in our poem, essay, comic strip, and poster categories.  We are especially proud of the students’ work this year as our theme, “Kindness Connects Cultures,” reinforces our very own district philosophy “Connecting with Kindness and Caring.”   

Congratulations to the poster winners from each of the buildings:

Calhoun High School:
First Place: Gary Solorzano-Ruiz, Mr. Ritaccio
Second Place: Anastasia Slobodov, Ms. Thienachariya
Third Place: Clare Hunter, Ms. Thienachariya

Kennedy High School:
First Place: Reagan Perrotta, Ms. Alfieri
Second Place: Lillie Saperman, Ms. Fiorentino
Third Place: Joanna Vaccaro, Ms. Valenti

Mepham High School:
First Place: John Cariotti, Ms. O’Neill
Second Place: Kate Lansizera, Ms. LoMonaco
Third Place: Luke Lansizera, Ms. LoMonaco

Grand Avenue Middle School:
First Place: Ronald Reznik, Mr. Zawislak
Second Place: Helena Fu, Ms. Han
Third Place: Annemarie Cabrera, Mr. Zawislak

Merrick Avenue Middle School:
First Place: Mia Cerino, Ms. Steinhaus
Second Place: Julianna Razza, Ms. Kelly
Third Place: Mariel Pusateri, Ms. Kelly

The top three poster finalists from each school were displayed at Brookside to determine the district-wide favorites. Central Administration staff voted for their top choices in both middle school and high school categories. Congratulations to the following students, who were selected among all finalists: 

High School:
First Place: Anastasia Slobodov, Calhoun, Ms. Thienachariya
Second Place: Gary Solorzano-Ruiz, Calhoun, Mr. Ritaccio
Third Place (tie): Clare Hunter, Calhoun, Ms. Thienachariya
Joanna Vaccaro, JFK, Ms. Valenti

Middle School:
First Place: Ronald Reznik, Grand, Mr. Zawislak
Second Place: Helena Fu, Grand, Ms. Han
Third Place: Mia Cerino, MAMS, Ms. Steinhaus


“We would like to thank the entire World Languages department for judging and to the faculty, staff, and students who submitted votes for the poster contest,” said Enrique Montes, a chairperson for the department. “We would like to send a special thanks to all our students who participated and the teachers who helped make this event a huge success.  Félicitacions! Congratulazioni! ¡Felicitaciones! 恭喜 Gōng Xǐ!”
 
Here is a complete list of winners:

Bellmore Merrick Central High School District
World Language Department Contest

High School Winners

French

2H Essay
1st Place - Claire Levasseur, Calhoun - Ms. Kefaliakos
2nd Place - Nolan Donohue, Calhoun - Ms. Kefaliakos
3rd Place - David Musallam, Calhoun - Ms. Kefaliakos

4H Essay
1st Place - Annalisa Zovich, Calhoun - Ms. Kefaliakos

2H Poetry
1st Place - Julia Gallagher, Mepham - Ms. Hayes

3H Poetry
1st Place - Julia Caponi, Mepham - Ms. Hayes
2nd Place - Alyssa Flores, Mepham - Ms. Hayes

4H Poetry
1st Place - Allison Trenkle, Mepham - Ms. Hayes

AP Poetry
1st Place - Anna Mouras, Mepham - Ms. Hayes

4H Comic Strip
1st Place - Kristen Jozwik, Mepham - Ms. Hayes

AP Comic Strip
1st Place - Allee Tiefenwerth, Mepham - Ms. Hayes

Italian

2R Essay
1st Place - Jessica Pagano, Mepham - Ms. Montuori
2nd Place - Caroline Grippo, Mepham - Ms. Montuori

2R Essay
1st Place - Giuliana Mazzaferro, JFK- Ms. Valenti
2nd Place - Eleni Proios, Mepham - Ms. Montuori
3rd Place - Georgia Koutsouras, Calhoun - Mr. Ritaccio


3R Essay
1st Place - Kiara Stefandel, JFK - Ms. Valenti
2nd Place - Nicholas Carlino, JFK - Ms. Alfieri

3H Essay
1st Place - Melissa Mjeshtri, JFK - Ms. Alfieri
2nd Place - Marley Zimmerman, Calhoun - Ms. Sycoff
3rd Place - Katherine Aluotto, Mepham - Mr. Franklin

4R Essay
1st Place - Ashley Romeo, JFK - Ms. Alfieri
2nd Place - Christian Palazzotto, JFK - Ms. Alfieri

4H Essay
1st Place - Daniella Smith, JFK - Ms. Alfieri
2nd Place - Emily Turner, Calhoun - Ms. Sycoff
3rd Place - Bryan Perez, JFK - Ms. Alfieri

5R Essay
1st Place - Natalie Arkow, JFK - Ms. Alfieri
2nd Place - Cameron Levy, JFK - Ms. Alfieri
3rd Place - Brianna Totino, JFK - Ms. Alfieri

AP Essay
1st Place - Ashley Newman, Calhoun - Ms. Sycoff
2nd Place - Danielle Polirer, JFK - Ms. Alfieri

2R Poetry
1st Place - Kaitlyn Exner, Mepham - Ms. Montuori
2nd Place - Ryan Stevanovic, Mepham - Ms. Montuori

2H Poetry
1st Place - Rachel Schleider, JFK - Ms. Valenti
2nd Place - Daniel Delgado, JFK - Ms. Valenti
3rd Place - Cecilia Totino, JFK - Ms. Valenti

3H Poetry
1st Place - Camryn Cerino, Calhoun - Ms. Sycoff
2nd Place - Lisa Jose, Calhoun - Ms. Sycoff
3rd Place - Tyler Kealy, JFK - Ms. Alfieri

4R Poetry
1st Place - Logan Basile, JFK - Ms. Alfieri
2nd Place - Franco Iampieri, Calhoun - Ms. Sycoff


4H Poetry
1st Place - Amanda Gundel, Mepham - Mr. Franklin
2nd Place - Gina Zazzi, Calhoun - Ms. Sycoff
3rd Place - Cassandra Livingston, JFK - Ms. Alfieri

5R Poetry
1st Place - Rachel Woodiwiss, JFK - Ms. Alfieri
2nd Place - Alexandra Frankel, JFK - Ms. Alfieri
3rd Place - Jade Polanco, JFK - Ms. Alfieri

AP Poetry
1st Place - Melissa Cabrera, JFK- Ms. Alfieri

2H Comic Strip
1st Place - Isabella Guimaraes, JFK - Ms. Valenti
2nd Place - Louis Saraceni, Mepham - Ms. Montuori

3R Comic Strip
1st Place - Josh Cohen, JFK - Ms. Alfieri
2nd Place - John Ohanian, JFK - Ms. Alfieri

3H Comic Strip
1st Place - Connor Desmond, JFK - Ms. Alfieri
2nd Place - Jared Weinstein, JFK - Ms. Alfieri

4H Comic Strip
1st Place - Gianna Librizzi, Calhoun - Ms. Sycoff
2nd Place - Gina Zazzi, Calhoun - Ms. Sycoff
3rd Place - Anthony D’Andrea, Calhoun - Ms. Sycoff


Spanish

2R Essay
1st Place - Arianna Peckham, JFK - Ms. Schickler
2nd Place -Jeremy Cadenas, JFK - Ms. Schickler
3rd Place - Andrea Puig, JFK - Ms. Valenti

2H Essay
1st Place - Jamie Caban, Calhoun - Ms. Thienachariya
2nd Place - Anthony Toumazatos, Calhoun - Ms. Thienachariya
3rd Place - Emily Moore, JFK - Mr. Reilly

3R Essay
1st Place - Aleana Goetz, MAP - Ms. Feldman
2nd Place - Danny Destler, Calhoun - Mr. Montoya

3H Essay
1st Place - Clare Hunter, Calhoun - Ms. Thienachariya
2nd Place - Sreeshty Ray, Mepham - Ms. Langevin
3rd Place - Ashley Cammiso, JFK - Ms. Schickler

4R Essay
1st Place - Savannah Espiritu, JFK - Ms. Engelson
2nd Place - Jessica Zhang, JFK - Ms. Engelson
3rd Place - Zachary Rosenfeld, JFK - Ms. Engelson

4H Essay
1st Place - Carmen Lage, Calhoun - Ms. Feldman
2nd Place - Jessica Lin, Calhoun - Ms. Feldman
3rd Place - Senya Huda, Calhoun - Ms. Feldman

5R Essay
1st Place - Mia Advocate, Calhoun - Mr. Montoya
2nd Place - Ian Mass, Mepham - Ms. McNeil
3rd Place - Danielle Jaghab, Mepham - Ms. McNeil

AP Essay
1st Place- Maggie Flaherty, Calhoun - Ms. DeLuca
2nd Place- Alex Fastlich, JFK - Mr. Reilly
3rd Place-Alex Brandl, Calhoun - Ms. DeLuca

2R Poetry
1st Place - Natalie Palladino, JFK - Ms. Valenti
2nd Place - Sophia Bonilla, Mepham - Ms. McNeil
3rd Place - Laci Tinter, Mepham - Ms. McNeil

2H Poetry
1st Place - Elyssa Brandl, Calhoun - Mr. Ritaccio
2nd Place - Meghan Bello, Calhoun - Ms. Thienachariya
3rd Place - Astrid Bonilla Rios, Mepham - Ms. O’Neill

3R Poetry
1st Place - Sydney Hochman, JFK - Ms. Hayes
2nd Place - Kenar Gelman, JFK - Ms. Hayes
3rd Place - Elana Abrams, JFK - Ms. Hayes

3H Poetry
1st Place - Alyssa Dioguardi, Mepham - Ms. Langevin
2nd Place - Heather Murray, Calhoun - Ms. Thienachariya
3rd Place - Dahlia Frier, Calhoun - Ms. Thienachariya


4R Poetry
1st Place - Alessandra Dippolito, JFK - Ms. Engelson
2nd Place - Allison Smith, JFK - Ms. Engelson

4H Poetry
1st Place - Julia Caponi, Mepham - Ms. Lo Monaco
2nd Place - Ben Berkowitz, Mepham - Ms. O’Neill
3rd Place - Whitney Sussman, JFK - Ms. Fiorentino

5R Poetry
1st Place - Gavin Moran, JFK - Ms. Fiorentino
2nd Place - Sara Goldstein, Mepham - Ms. McNeil
3rd Place - Danielle Jaghab, Mepham - Ms. McNeil

AP Poetry
1st Place - Amanda Schleider, JFK - Mr. Reilly
2nd Place - Rundi Ruan, Mepham - Ms. Lo Monaco
3rd Place - Andrea Lindner, JFK - Mr. Reilly

2R Comic Strip
1st Place - Jill Silverstein, Mepham - Ms. McNeil
2nd Place - Avery Saccio, Mepham - Ms. McNeil
3rd Place - James Brennan, Calhoun - Ms. Thienachariya

2H Comic Strip
1st Place - Sunita Samardo, JFK - Mr. Reilly
2nd Place - Michelle Serban, Calhoun - Ms. Thienachariya
3rd Place - Mia Renna, Calhoun- Ms. Thienachariya

3H Comic Strip
1st Place - Nicole Leyderman, JFK - Mr. Reilly
2nd Place - Jackson Jackrel, Mepham - Ms. Langevin
3rd Place - Anthony Pirrone, Calhoun - Ms. Thienachariya

4R Comic Strip
1st Place- Matt Woghin, JFK - Ms. Engelson

4H Comic Strip
1st Place - Lauren Jones, Calhoun - Ms. Deluca
2nd Place - Claudia Dreyer, JFK - Ms. Fiorentino
3rd Place -Samantha Koffler, Calhoun - Ms. Feldman

5R Comic Strip
1st Place - Rida Zaida, Mepham - Ms. McNeil

Posters
1st Place - Anastasia Slobodov, Calhoun - Ms. Thienachariya
2nd Place - Gary Solorzano-Ruiz, Calhoun - Mr. Ritaccio
3rd Place - (tie) Clare Hunter, Calhoun - Ms. Thienachariya
(tie) Joanna Vaccaro, JFK - Ms. Valenti


Middle School Winners
French

1B Essay
1st Place - Dasha Kharats, MAMS - Ms. Schleith
2nd Place - Katherine Olson, GAMS - Mr. Zawislak
3rd Place - Anika Strite, GAMS - Mr. Zawislak

1B Poetry
1st Place - William Barlowe , GAMS - Mr. Zawislak
2nd Place - Karina Salmeri , GAMS - Mr. Zawislak
3rd Place - Anthony Patti, MAMS - Ms. Schleith

1A Comic Strip
1st Place - Riley Fried, GAMS - Mr. Zawislak
2nd Place - Michael Mallia, MAMS - Ms. Schleith
3rd Place - Sarah Cousins, MAMS - Ms. Schleith

1B Comic Strip
1st Place - Michael Samir, MAMS - Ms. Schleith
2nd Place - Madeline Chaffer, MAMS - Ms. Schleith
3rd Place - Christen Ayodele, GAMS -Mr. Zawislak

Italian

1B Essay
1st Place - Alanna Morse, GAMS - Ms. Steinhaus
2nd Place - Conlan Shea, MAMS - Ms. DiChiara
3rd Place - Anthony Scotto, GAMS - Mr. Zawislak

1B Poetry
1st Place - Nicholas Carrano, GAMS - Mr. Zawislak
2nd Place - Casey Miccio, GAMS - Mr. Zawislak
3rd Place - Sophia Zizzo, GAMS - Mr. Zawislak

1A Comic Strip
1st Place - Jack Sylvia, MAMS - Ms. DiChiara
2nd Place - Thomas Miller, GAMS - Ms. Crocitto


1B Comic Strip
1st Place - Nicholas Salas, GAMS - Mr. Zawislak
2nd Place - Timothy Langone, GAMS - Ms. Steinhaus
3rd Place - Caitlyn Raehse, GAMS - Mr. Zawislak

Mandarin

1B Essay
1st Place- Vincent Yang, GAMS - Ms. Han

1B Poetry
1st Place - Julianna Rosenthal, GAMS - Ms. Han

1A Comic Strip
1st Place - Cullen Matthews, MAMS - Ms. Han
2nd Place - Hayden Okonowitz, MAMS - Ms. Han
3rd Place - Danielle Berkowitz, MAMS - Ms. Han

1B Comic Strip
1st Place - Tina Cheng/Erika Klein, MAMS - Ms. Han
2nd Place - Kathryn McNerney, GAMS - Ms. Han


Spanish

1B Essay
1st Place - Justin Polanco, MAMS - Ms. Kelly
2nd Place - Elisabeth Zannikos, MAMS - Ms. Marando
3rd Place - Emma Guzowski, MAMS - Ms. Marando

1B Poetry
1st Place - Michelle Brown, MAMS - Ms. Yaltzindeg
2nd Place - Eva Canning, MAMS - Ms. Yaltzindeg
3rd Place - Dan Glasser, MAMS - Ms. Kelly

1A Comic Strip
1st Place - Ruby Mattes, GAMS - Ms. McDonnell
2nd Place - Nicholas Cuda, MAMS - Ms. Marando
3rd Place - Matthew Cuda, MAMS - Ms. Marando

1B Comic Strip
1st Place - Maxwell Hahn, GAMS - Mr. Doherty
2nd Place - James LaSalle, GAMS - Mr. Doherty
3rd Place - Kara Wauchope, MAMS - Mr. Kelly

Posters
1st Place - Ronald Reznik, GAMS - Mr. Zawislak
2nd Place- Helena Fu, GAMS -Ms. Han
3rd Place- Mia Cerino, MAMS - Ms. Steinhaus
 

Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting Students Learn from Filmmaker

Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting Students Learn from Filmmaker photo
Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting Students Learn from Filmmaker photo 2
Documentary filmmaker Jeremy Newberger, of Emmy-nominated Ironbound Films, visited with the students of the Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting program on April 12.  

Newberger spent the morning discussing the world of documentary filmmaking, along with the many career opportunities and paths available in the world of broadcasting with the students.  
“He used his real world experience producing documentaries screened at both the Sundance and Tribeca Film Festivals to offer advice for the students as they create their own documentaries on life in an American high school,” said teacher Stuart Stein.

Newberger is currently touring the country promoting his most recent project Heading Home, the tale of team Israel at last year’s World Baseball Classic. The film will be in select theaters this summer.
 

Mepham Students Can Dance

Mepham Students Can Dance photo

Mepham High School held its 10th annual So They Think They Can Dance competition on April 10.

The event is modeled after the reality dance competition shows on television and is presented by the varsity kickline team each year. Eight teams were selected by teachers/coaches Kerry Dennis and Jackie Geller and were composed of athletes, musicians, artists and scholars from each grade. 

The students competed to win the praise and scores of judges Principal Eric Gomez and Assistant Principals Dr. Jennifer Carne and Marie Netto. 

The night was hosted by Mepham senior David Riobo and special education teacher and track coach Anthony Augugliaro, who was a competitor as a student in the very first competition in 2009. 

The Bellmore-Merrick broadcasting students covered the evening’s dance numbers. Team Celine were the Jazz champions and overall winners.
“The night continues to showcase Mepham spirit and pirate pride,” Dennis said. 

The Builders Club of Grand Avenue Sponsors “Pennies for Patients”

Once again, the Builders Club of Grand Avenue Middle School will be participating in the "Pennies for Patients" program sponsored by The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society from April 9 – 25. As we have done in the past, each academic team will also compete against each other to see who raises the most money. Donations for the academic team competition can be made online. The link to each academic team page is below! May the best team win!


http://events.lls.org/pages/li/Grand-Ave-Middle-School-2018/ateam

http://events.lls.org/pages/li/Grand-Ave-Middle-School-2018/discovery

http://events.lls.org/pages/li/Grand-Ave-Middle-School-2018/dynamite

http://events.lls.org/pages/li/Grand-Ave-Middle-School-2018/fire

http://events.lls.org/pages/li/Grand-Ave-Middle-School-2018/justice

http://events.lls.org/pages/li/Grand-Ave-Middle-School-2018/legacy

http://events.lls.org/pages/li/Grand-Ave-Middle-School-2018/supreme

http://events.lls.org/pages/li/Grand-Ave-Middle-School-2018/warriors

Calhoun English Teacher Recognized by the Harvard Club of Long Island

Calhoun English Teacher Recognized by the Harvard Club of Long Island photo
Jason Boland, an English teacher at Calhoun High School, was recently recognized as a distinguished teacher by the Harvard Club of Long Island.
  
Julia Losner, Calhoun grad and current Harvard University student, nominated Boland for the award.

“For a student to recognize you after they graduate is quite an honor,” said board trustee Wendy Garguilo at the April 9 meeting where Boland was recognized.

A graduate of Calhoun himself, Boland began his educational career at Merrick Avenue Middle School, and then after three years, he continued on to Calhoun High School, where he has been since. He has taught students of all grades, including 11th grade AP English Language.  

A former Herald reporter and editor, Boland has functioned as the Hoofbeats adviser for the last 12 years. He has been invited to speak at the Columbia Scholastic Press Association’s annual convention, presenting to more than 200 other advisers and journalism students about, “reinventing your school newspaper.”

An all-year contributor to the Bellmore-Merrick school community, Boland has also functioned as the girls varsity softball coach for the past 15 years and a summer school teacher for the past 20 years.  


Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting Bequeathed Gift from Alumnus

Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting Bequeathed Gift from Alumnus photo
Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting Bequeathed Gift from Alumnus photo 2
Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting Bequeathed Gift from Alumnus photo 3
From mimeographs to the green screen, the way the Mepham High School student body gets its news is ever changing.
To further advance the Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting program, Frank Merklein Sr., a member of the Class of 1940, bequeathed $5,000.

Longtime friends of Merklein, Jerry Worthing and Clare Worthing, also Mepham alumni, have been acting as ambassadors of his wishes and visited the program on March 27 for a tour.

Merkelin worked in the television industry as a cameraman in the 1950s and was part of the “Howdy Doody” crew, as well the debut of The Today Show.

Students interviewed the couple on their Mepham experiences, as well as the life of Merklein, for future use in news packages.

“When we were students, we got our news from the school newspaper, The Buccaneer,” Jerry Worthing said. 

While The Buccaneer is still produced today, the broadcasting program films and edits daily announcements as well as provides video services for various events throughout the district. 

“As the program continues to mature, we are learning about more advanced technology that can be used in instruction,” said Mary Donnelly, a district English chairperson. “This gives us an opportunity to purchase some of that new technology.” 

Bellmore-Merrick Hosts One Voice, One Message 5K

Bellmore-Merrick Hosts One Voice, One Message 5K photo

Not even Mother Nature could deter the Central High School District from once again hosting their One Voice, One Message 5K Run/Walk on March 24.

Organized by Dr. Joseph Netto, the school psychologist at the Meadowbrook Alternative Program, and Robyn Einbinder, a social studies chairperson at Wellington C. Mepham High School, the event is in its fourth year. 

“None of this could have been done without our Deputy Superintendent for Personnel, Dr. Mara Bollettieri, whose passion and dedication to the Bellmore-Merrick Central High School District have helped make this wonderful event a reality and who continues to provide countless opportunities for our students,” Dr. Netto said to the crowd ahead of the start of the race.

All proceeds will support GiveKindness, which is a social media platform founded by Mepham High School alumnae Nicole Madison and Larisa Madison that promotes kindness, positivity and respect in hopes of combating the effects of cyberbullying.  

In addition, funds will also go toward the district's Community Cupboard, a food pantry that currently assists more than 40 families. 

“We can all make a difference,” said Legislator Steve Rhoads. “When you’re talking about GiveKindess or the Community Cupboard, these are all things that have been sponsored by students themselves or alumni from the Bellmore-Merrick Central High School District. The important message is that each and every one of us have an obligation to make our corner of the world a little bit better.”

Overall winners were Mepham High School student Brendan Moehringer for the men and Theresa Ferraro for the women.

Several local vendors and businesses donated goods and services for the event: Panera Bread of Bellmore, Merrick Road Starbucks, Dover Caterers, Bellmore Town Bagel, Bagel Boss of Merrick, Bellmore Bagel Café, Trader Joe’s, Stop ‘N Shop, North Shore Farms, E. Armada Produce and Guardian Bus Company. Additionally, the Nassau County Police Department and the Town of Hempstead secured the route. 

Athletes Share Success Stories at Park Avenue

Athletes Share Success Stories at Park Avenue photo
Students in the upper elementary grades in the North Bellmore School District don’t have to look very far for positive role models. Throughout the year, their older peers from Mepham High School have been visiting classrooms through the Athletes Helping Athletes program.

Mepham athletes recently paid their third and final visit of the year to fifth-grade classes at Park Avenue Elementary School. The program cultivated positive connections and showed elementary school students how to be successful when they reach high school. Topics included good sportsmanship and making positive life choices. 

The high school students presented the youngsters with various scenarios to determine they best way to react if they were faced with a challenging situation. The athletes talked about the good decisions they made so they could achieve success both on the field and in the classroom. 
 

Mepham AP students Win Political Essay Contest

Mepham AP students Win Political Essay Contest photo
On March 28, Mepham High School teacher Sarah Bender and social studies chairperson Robyn Einbinder accompanied AP Government & Politics students to Hofstra University to hear Presidential Scholars Ed Rollins and Howard Dean talk about the current state of politics.  

Essay contest winners Theresa Hamm and Rebecca Scotto met with Rollins and Dean. Both girls wrote impressive essays in answer to the question, “How do President Trump’s formal and informal public communications affect his political leadership?”

Painting Earns Kennedy Artist Jessica Rosen a Gold Medal

Painting Earns Kennedy Artist Jessica Rosen a Gold Medal photo
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A dedicated honor student who juggles a challenging AP workload, Kennedy High School senior Jessica Rosen said she uses oil painting as a release.

Rosen’s painting “Tied Up” has been awarded a prestigious National Gold Medal in the 2018 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards.  

Jessica received a Gold Key at the regional level prior to learning of this national accomplishment for both “Tied Up” and “Within the Shadow,” as well as two Silver Keys for her Art Portfolio, “What They Want Vs. Who I Am” and her painting, “Grandpa.”

“I have always been an academic and self-disciplined person,” Rosen said. “I love painting as a form of self-expression.”

Her AP art teacher Vanessa Albaneze said Rosen is one of those students who creates beautiful art out of pure enjoyment, not just to satisfy school assignments.

“She consistently challenges herself and understands that only practice and work will get you to where you want to be... it is not only about having ‘talent,’” Albaneze added. “She has no fear when it comes to painting and she often becomes so excited by a new idea that she can not wait to start.”

Other students who placed in the competition include: Matthew Klein, Gold Key - Digital Art - "Self – Portrait;” Madison Renck, Silver Key - Fashion - "Making Headlines" and Nina Weissbach, Silver Key - Photography – “Communication.” Samantha Fried and Weissbach received honorable mention nods for their Drawing & Illustration submissions, "Red Glasses" and "Just Breathe,” respectively.

Teens in grades 7–12 apply in 29 categories of art and writing which are juried by luminaries in the visual and literary arts. Panelists look for works that best exemplify originality, technical skill, and the emergence of a personal voice or vision.

Rosen will be attending the Scholastic Art & Writing National Awards Ceremony held at Carnegie Hall in New York City on June 7. She plans to study at Colgate University in the fall.
 

Bellmore-Merrick Students Earn Accolades at LISEF

Bellmore-Merrick Students Earn Accolades at LISEF photo
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On March 15, students from across Central High School District competed in the second round of the Long Island Science and Engineering Fair at the Crest Hollow Country Club.

LISEF is the regional science fair for students to present their research in order to be eligible to complete in the national Broadcom MASTERS, which is administered by the Society for Science and the Public.  

Kennedy’s Cameron Levy and Lucas Rosen who presented their Advance Science Research projects in the animal science and mathematics categories. Levy earned third place and Rosen earned honorable mention. He also received a special award. Matthew Klein received a special award from NASA.

Both young scientists were selected to advance to round 2 of LISEF. Rosen also earned first place in the mathematics category at the Long Island Junior Science and Humanities Symposium and was invited to advance to the Regional JSHS competition. Their research teachers are Barbi Frank and Barbara Franklin.

From Calhoun High School, two Calhoun ASR students were invited to participate in round 2. Senior Kyle Pilotti's project won the honor of honorable mention in the category of earth and environmental sciences. Pilotti was also honored by the American Meteorological Society and presented with an award for a student researcher that showed initiative and dedication in the field of meteorology. Sophomore Sonia Sarju also received the honor of honorable mention in the category of earth and environmental science for her project. They work with advisers Christine Boyce and Jennifer Pefanis.

Seven students from Grand Avenue Middle School also competed at LISEF in the middle school division.  

To participate at LISEF, students in sixth-eighth grades must perform a scientific investigation under the guidance of their teachers. The projects receiving a first place award or those scoring within the top 10 percent for each regional fair (based on total number of participating) receive nominations to SSP Broadcom MASTERS.  

Tyler  Bissoondial received first place and a Broadcom MASTER’s nomination for his project. Julianna Rosenthal received second place and Broadcom MASTER’s nomination for her project and Timothy Langone received third place for his project. Gabriella Simal, Sahara Partap and Mackenzie Filosa received third place for their group project. Science teacher, Tami Cruz, was the adviser for this group.
 

Bellmore-Merrick Shaves for Childhood Cancer Research

Bellmore-Merrick Shaves for Childhood Cancer Research photo

The force was strong at Mepham High School on March 13 as the school hosted its annual Chop Your Lock's for Charity event to benefit the St. Baldrick's Foundation.

Various participants raised more than $37,000 and guest visitors included the 501st Legion, a Star Wars costuming organization that attends charitable events and the Amityville Highland Pipe Band.

The Mepham Skull & Bones Drama Club treated guests to a performance of their upcoming production, “In the Heights.” 
The night was put together by Mepham’s Participation in Government students. They solicited donations and raffles and ran the event, while seniors Lauren Lasker, Amanda LaRossa, Joe Lozito and Cassidy Hoffman served as hosts. Additionally, School and Community Leadership students assisted with the night's events as well. 

“Our Participation in Government and Leadership students really took the reins this year, overseeing an event that included students and staff from all over the district, as well as the community,” said Kerry Dennis, social studies teacher, kickline coach and St. Baldrick's co-coordinator.

Merrick Avenue Middle School social studies teacher Matt Chicco was the top individual fundraiser; earning $3,008. Team Guiliana G., created for Mepham social studies teacher Jacqueline Geller’s cancer surviving 5-year-old daughter, was in second, earning $2,725 for the cause.

Since 2008, Mepham High School has raised more than $300,000 for the St. Baldrick's Foundation, which funds research for childhood cancers.







Merrick Avenue Coding Students Present at Tech Conference

Merrick Avenue Coding Students Present at Tech Conference photo
Merrick Avenue Coding Students Present at Tech Conference photo 2
Merrick Avenue Middle School teacher Dan Stiglitz and 10 of his seventh-grade coding students recently presented their work on the OYOclass learning platform to technology educators and professionals across Long Island at the Technology ASSET Conference.

“The Merrick Avenue students and Mr. Stiglitz did an outstanding job representing the work and accomplishments completed by seventh-graders in our new District Coding Curriculum that was developed with our partner organization kidOYO,” said Robert Soel, science chair STEM chair. 

Each of the seventh-graders who presented was awarded a full tuition scholarship for one week of coding summer camp @kid_OYO this summer.

“Since our kidOYO partnership began and the District Creative Coding curriculum was implemented this fall, our district seventh-graders have earned over 5,000 electronic badges and completed over 6,000 coding challenges in their personal digital portfolios,” added Soel. “Within the coding curriculum and on the OYOclass learning community, our students have interacted with their classmates, technology teachers and 35 professional computer science mentors in the kidOYO network.”

 All of the seventh-graders who have taken coding in the fall are now enrolled in the new seventh-grade Entrepreneurship elective this spring, where they may leverage their new coding skills creating their own apps and games in a virtual business.


BMCHSD Security Presentation - 3/14 BOE Meeting

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Mepham Celebrates Middle Eastern and South Asian Culture

Mepham Celebrates Middle Eastern and South Asian Culture photo

On March 1, a festive crowd gathered at Mepham High School to learn more about the Islam faith and Muslim culture during the second annual Middle Eastern and South Asian Night.

The event is the brainchild of junior Rina Sarfraz, who explained that her goal is to “educate others about Islam as well as show off the beautiful intricacies of her culture.”

Attendees enjoyed a variety of activities including coloring mandalas, receiving henna tattoos and nibbling on traditional foods such as samosas, naan, kebabs, banana chips. 

Some participants even dipped their toes – and hips – into an interactive Bollywood dance lesson.

Hosted on behalf of the World of Difference and Leo clubs, led by adviser Josephine Parlagreco, the groups aim to teach others about acceptance and respect of people no matter race, religion, gender, etc. Proceeds from raffle sales will benefit the UN Refugee Agency.

 

Calhoun Cheer Squad Named Nassau Champs

Calhoun Cheer Squad Named Nassau Champs photo
The Calhoun varsity cheerleaders have been successful this season. The team landed on top as winners at the Nassau County Section 8 Championship for the second year in a row. Undefeated in the Division 1 Co-Ed category they took eighth place in the New York State Championship on March 3 in Syracuse.

“We are so proud of this team and how hard they worked together to accomplish something great this season,” said coach Chrissy Meiselas. “They are an amazing team and a special group of athletes who always think about the team first.”




Kennedy Students Learn Good Decision-Making Skills

Kennedy Students Learn Good Decision-Making Skills photo
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More than 25 students gathered in the dimly lit wrestling room on March 2, to nestle into the foam mats, listen to soothing spa music and be guided through meditation and yoga poses during Good Decision Making Week at Kennedy High School.

With the support of the Community Parent Center, The practice was part of a series of assemblies and workshops aimed at promoting good decisions. 

“This is a great opportunity for us to continue to focus on fostering an environment where students help each other and exhibit kindness,” said Principal David Seinfeld.

Earth science teacher and certified yoga instructor Dawn Sullivan has been implementing deep breathing, guided mediation and stretching exercises in the classroom for some time now and sees a direct correlation in students’ behavior as well as academic performance.

“Ahead of a testing day, I find students are even requesting it,” Sullivan added. “Afterward, they have an actual sensory emotional feeling of before and after and we can then open a dialogue about how that coincides with what it’s like being a high school student and start to make those connections.”

Although this week was the ideal opportunity to introduce students to the practice, Sullivan has actually been offering practices regularly to faculty members during off periods. Together with Good Decisions Week coordinator and Assistant Principal Gerard Owenburg, Sullivan plans to collaborate with clubs and teachers to further drive these mindfulness points home.

“It all came from this year’s mission charged to us as educators from Superintendent John DeTommaso about ‘connecting with kindness and caring,’” Owenburg said. “This is a way for us to get kids thinking about how they can better take care of themselves as well as their peers.”

Owenburg also said they are working on the creation of a space in the building where students can go to practice during their off periods.

“It’s a way to calm down, be centered and feel happier,” Sullivan explained. “When you have a day that is difficult this gives you a way to take back control.”

Other programs included substance abuse awareness, interactive workshops to deter DWI/distracted driving and internet safety. Merrick resident Steve Weiner addressed students about goal setting, and the ability to be strong in tough situations.

The self-proclaimed “Strong Man” is a Guinness Book of World Records holder. His message to the students was well-received as he performed some his Strongman feats such as rolling a frying pan and bending a horseshoe.

“In addition, he allowed the students to try age-appropriate strength activities and presented a great message about goal setting and perseverance,” added Athletic Director Craig Papach.

“These full grade assembly programs in addition to classroom activities presented by Pride for Youth, LICADD, and individual teachers, I believe, served our students well,” added Seinfeld. “It is my sincere hope that we, as an adult community, work together to send healthy and mindful messages to our children.”


Merrick Avenue Celebrates Foreign Language Week

Merrick Avenue Celebrates Foreign Language Week photo
Merrick Avenue Celebrates Foreign Language Week photo2
The Merrick Avenue Department of World Languages celebrated Foreign Language Week with several fantastic activities and events. Each teacher’s students represented a different country for the week’s festivities. 

“Some of the countries represented were China, France, Italy, Mexico, Cuba and Spain,” said World Languages Chairperson Rosa Kaplan. “Students decorated classroom doors and hallways to showcase each country. ENL students decorated their classroom door to represent the United States and conducted the morning announcements in Greek, Chinese, Spanish, Turkish and Russian in addition to English. This year, students learned unique idioms in their classes as well.”

Throughout the week, students and staff voted on the best poster in the department’s annual poster contest, the theme of which was Kindness Connects Cultures. On March 9, students and staff tasted dishes from all over the world as students shared delicacies from their own cultures. 



Calhoun’s Cluboard Aims to Assist Community Cupboard

Calhoun’s Cluboard Aims to Assist Community Cupboard photo
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As the district’s food pantry, the Community Cupboard expands in both size and service; volunteerism remains a key factor in its continued success.

That’s where Calhoun High School’s newly formed group, the Cluboard comes in.

Sophomore Dahlia Frier, a longtime member of the student ambassador program, said she saw a decline in donations which motivated her to create this club. 

“This was a way for us to get involved in our community and come together,” she added.

The group has hosted a food drive, volunteered and promoted the pantry’s existence and available opportunities. Other fundraising opportunities are in the works such as the upcoming March 19 dine out at Burgrito’s on Merrick Avenue in Merrick.

“Fifty percent of purchases between 4-9 p.m. will be donated to the Community Cupboard,” added sophomore club member Sarah Multer.

“This is an ideal way for our students to support the community and promote civic action for these young leaders,” said club adviser and Assistant Principal Mark Melkonian. “We really wanted this to be a way for students to be able to have a direct impact on their community.”

Serving more than 40 families on a bi-weekly basis, Frier said she is grateful people have an approachable place where they can feel comfortable getting necessary items for their families.
Anyone interested in donating pantry, hygiene, baby or pet items, organizing the pantry or making deliveries to drop off sites can call 516-992-1073.

Bellmore-Merrick CHSD Expands Food Pantry

Bellmore-Merrick CHSD Expands Food Pantry photo
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The district’s  food pantry, dubbed the Community Cupboard, has recently expanded – both in size and service. 

They are now serving more than 40 local families bi-weekly and have added shelving and increased available donations. A volunteer effort on Feb. 10 centered on an expansion of space and reorganization of donations. 

“It is amazing that our Cupboard has expanded in our short year-and-a-half. It is a true community effort,” said Deputy Superintendent Dr. Mara Bollettieri, who also serves as co-organizer.

Additionally, students and staff from Sanford H. Calhoun High School recently started a new community service-based club called Cluboard, that will serve and benefit the Community Cupboard. Assistant Principal Mark Melkonian is the adviser.

For more information about the Cupboard, call 516-992-1073.




Grand Avenue’s Drama Club to Perform ‘The Addams Family’

Grand Avenue’s Drama Club to Perform ‘The Addams Family’ photo
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The Grand Avenue Middle School Drama Club will be performing “The Addams Family,” on March 15-16, at 7 p.m.

Under the direction of director/English teacher Rebecca Levy, student actors will recreate this classic film on the stage.

Performances are open to the public. Tickets are $5 and will be sold at the door. Grand Avenue Middle School is located at 2301 Grand Ave., in Bellmore.

Mepham Kickline Performs at National Dance Championship

Mepham Kickline Performs at National Dance Championship photo

The Mepham varsity kickline team competed for the sixth time in the program's history at the 2018 NDA High School National Championship in Orlando, Florida.

The team competed among the best in the country and made it into finals in all three routines, placing ninth out of 32 teams in Small Varsity Jazz; 10th out of 17 in Large Varsity Team Performance and 12th out of 32 in Large Varsity Pom. 

Prior to leaving for nationals, the team was named the 2018 Long Island Champions for Pom for the ninth time in the last 10 years. 






GAMS Celebrates Foreign Language Week

GAMS Celebrates Foreign Language Week photo
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The Department of World Languages involved the entire Grand Avenue Middle School community in this year’s Foreign Language Week activities.

Students decorated the auditorium lobby with collages of pictures of themselves in different countries and representing food and clothing from many countries. 

“The department asked students to read daily announcements in different languages, held a trivia contest and bake sale and invited students and staff to pin the countries they have visited on a map,” said Renée Fallon World Languages Chairperson.

The entire building also took part in a vote for the best poster in the district-wide World Languages poster contest. 



Bellmore-Merrick CHSD Teams Earn Scholar Athlete Status

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Every athletic squad in the Bellmore-Merrick Central High School District has been declared a Scholar Athlete team for the winter 2017-18 season by the New York State Public High School Athletic Association.

To earn this distinction, teams must earn a 90 percent Grade Point Average or higher.

“Our student-athletes display the core values of commitment and dedication daily both inside and outside of the classroom,” said Eric Caballero, director of physical education, athletics, driver’s education and health. 

All teams have achieved this honor in the past as well. 

Kennedy’s Dan Shafran Wrestles to Fourth Place

Kennedy’s Dan Shafran Wrestles to Fourth Place photo
Dan Shafran, a senior at Kennedy High School in the Bellmore-Merrick Central School District, placed fourth at the New York State Wrestling Championships on Feb. 24-25. 

“This was the highest place finish for a JFK wrestler since Nick Laurino in 2006,” said coach Brian DeGaetano.

Shafran finished the season with a 42-5 record, which was a significant improvement from his record last year. 

He started wrestling in his junior year last season and wrestled mostly junior varsity and had a 5-7 record on varsity.

District Emergency Planning Guide for Parents - Please Read

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Mepham Italian Honor Society Celebrates Culture

Mepham Italian Honor Society Celebrates Culture Pic
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Mepham High School’s chapter of the National Italian Honor Society hosted its 16th annual Italian Culture Night under the direction of adviser and Italian teacher, Kristen Montuori.  

The evening was filled with music, poetry, games and food. Honor Society President Olivia Larocchia sang the classic, “Io che non vivo.” The theme of the evening was Carnevale and guests were treated to mask making and a poem recitation by society member Amanda LaRossa about the Italian holiday.  

“Guests wore their masks throughout the evening, simulating a true Italian Carnevale,” said World Languages Chairperson Rosa Kaplan. “The evening also included the annual game of Tombola, an Italian style-bingo, led by honor society officers, Joe Lozito and Gavin Dass.”

The Italian Honor Society would like to thank all of the Mepham families as well as the local businesses that helped to make the event successful by donating food and products. Sponsors included Bellmore Playhouse, Gino’s Tuscany, Moolala Frozen Yogurt, Gusto Divino Trattoria, Bagelicious, The Oakhurst Company, Left Coast Kitchen & Cocktails, Flowers by Voegler, Mary Bove, Piccolo Ristorante, Uncle Giuseppe’s Marketplace, International Delight Café, Darker Tanning, Michelangelo Salon, Rocco’s Pizza of Bellmore, Cynthia Connors, Presidio, Norman Egan and John Larocchia.

Community Cupboard

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Updates Inside

Capital Project Updates

The district will be placing new information in this section regarding the Capital Projects. Be on the lookout for information as it becomes available. See the links below for our latest updates.

1/24/18 Bond Phase 4 Update

8/14/17 Full Construction Update

7/14/17 Bond Phase 3 Update

10/24/16 Bond Phase 2 & 3 Update

9/6/16 Bond Phase 2 & 3 Update

8/8/16 Bond Phase 2 & 3 Update

7/27/16 Bond Phase 2 & 3 Update

7/15/16 Bond Update

7/6/16 Bond Update

July 2016 Capital Bond Project Slideshow

6/11/16 - Bond Phase 2 and 3 Update

April 2016 Capital Bond Project Slideshow

4/11/16 - Bond Phase 2 Update

March 2016 Capital Bond Project Slideshow

3/1/16 - Bond Phase 2 Update

February 2016 Capital Bond Project Slideshow

1/5/16 - Bond Phase 2 Update

12/15/15 - Bond Phase 2 Update

December 2015 Capital Bond Project Slideshow

11/15/15 - Bond Phase 2 Update

November 2015 Capital Bond Project Slideshow

10/20/15 - Bond Phase 2 Update

8/25/15 - Bond Phase 2 Update

1/22/15 - Bond Phase 1 Update

12/10/14 - Bond Phase 1 Update

10/29/14 - Bond Phase 1 Update

9/29/14 - Bond Phase 1 Update

8/11/14 - Bond Phase 1 Update

7/14/14 - Bond Phase 1 Update

6/30/14 - Bond Phase 1 Update

July 2014 Capital Bond Project Slideshow

August 2014 Capital Bond Project Slideshow

September 2014 Capital Bond Project Slideshow

Captial Projects Slideshow

October 2014 Capital Bond Project Slideshow

November 2014 Capital Bond Project Slideshow

December 2014 Capital Bond Project Slideshow

Construction Update 6/17/14

Neighbor Letter Re: Construction (Middle School)

Neighbor Letter Re: Construction

6/10/14 - Bond Phase 1 Update

SED Approval - Phase I  - May 6

02/10/14 - Bond Project Update

Capital Project Potential Phasing