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Calhoun's VE Team Nabs First Place at Adelphi

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On Nov. 16, by working with expert business faculty and marketing professionals, students from the Sanford H. Calhoun High School business program put their knowledge of essential and relevant marketing components to work. Their efforts earned them first place and the coveted title of Adelphi Apprentice at the Adelphi Apprentice Challenge.

“They tested their skills and worked collaboratively in teams to develop a marketing plan based on a case assignment that was presented to a panel of esteemed corporate judges,” said teacher and adviser Peter Palazzo. Students Julia Babbo and Troy Pastor were an integral part of a team that created the most successful marketing plan. The team, DefenseLine, also won first place in the Elevator Pitch Contest at the 2018 Business and Entrepreneurship Leadership Conference sponsored by LIU Post and Virtual Enterprise International. The team was among 1,500 students from more than 60 high schools on Long Island to compete and earned a $1,000 prize.

VIDEO: Accomplished Alumnus and Percussionist Neil Grover Visits Kennedy

VIDEO: Accomplished Alumnus and Percussionist Neil Grover Visits Kennedy

Decades ago Neil Grover, a member of Kennedy High School’s class of 1973, watched Ringo Starr perform with The Beatles on television and he began playing the drums in the school band.

Fast forward to the present where he expertly performs on more than 40 percussion instruments, travels the globe with the esteemed Boston Pops and has created his own concert instrument line, Grover Pro Percussion.

The accomplished musician addressed a packed band room at Kennedy on Dec. 3.

“While I was at Kennedy, I was probably practicing one to two hours a day because I wanted to get into a music conservatory,” Grover recalled. “By the time I was a senior, I knew I wanted to peruse music as a career, but was unsure in what capacity.”

Grover demonstrated various percussion instruments including the bongos, congas, tambourine and also played an excerpt of a song from the hit movie, Home Alone on the glockenspiel and chimes.

"It was such an awesome experience having Mr. Grover come in to speak and perform for my students,” said Walter Avellaneda, director of bands. “To see someone fulfill their lifelong passion and have a career with so many accomplishments was an incredible lesson for my students.”

Grover stressed the importance of finding your passion and running with it. 

“There is no better inspiration for students than that,” Avellaneda added. “For them to see an alumnus that played on the very same instruments, in the same room, while spending countless hours in the band room and hearing his journey become one of the most respected percussionists in the music industry was such a treat. It is something we will all never forget and the kids haven't stopped talking about it." 

A message of sacrifice and perseverance was emphasized to students when it comes to pursuing your goals.  Grover constantly reiterated that everyone in their own way has a passion for music, as it touches lives on many levels.  He encouraged students to keep playing whether it be for a future career as a musician or simply for their own enjoyment. 

Grover ended by sharing that his time in the band program at Kennedy High School was one of the most motivating factors in starting his highly successful career.

 

 

Mepham Boys Soccer Players Earn High Honors

Mepham Boys Soccer Players Earn High Honors photo
Mepham Boys Soccer Players Earn High Honors photo 2
The Mepham High School boys varsity soccer team were honored at the Nassau County awards ceremony on Dec. 4, in addition to the district’s Board of Education meeting the following evening.

Among those honored were: Andrew Weiner, All-American, All-Region, All-State, All-County, Jim Steen Award (County POY), A-1 Conference POY, Newsday All-Long Island; Christopher Cossu, All-State, All-County; Kieran Gilroy, All-County Honorable Mention; Connor Buehler, All-County Honorable Mention; Harrison Davila, All-Conference; Jonathan Gaufman, All-Conference; Corey Lichtman, All-Conference; Brian Willis, All-Conference; and John Berry, Scholar Athlete.

Additionally, coach Zachary Gosse was named Newsday Nassau Coach of the Year, A-1 Conference Coach of the Year.

“You will have that experience forever,” John DeTommaso, superintendent of schools said when he addressed the team and their parents at the Dec. 5 board meeting. “You are going to remember the relationship between each other on and off the field and that’s so special. That’s what makes being a student athlete unbelievable. It gives us such joy that all of you will always have that feeling.”

Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting Welcomes Writer/Director

Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting Welcomes Writer/Director photo
Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting Welcomes Writer/Director photo 2
Students in the Bellmore-Merrick broadcasting program were recently visited by writer and director Jim Mendrinos of New Media Comedy in the studio, which is housed at Mepham High School. 

Mendrinos, a veteran of 30 years in the television field, has spent time in the writers rooms of Saturday Night Live, WWE Wrestling and Head of the Class to name just a few of his credits. Mendrinos is also the author of the “Complete Idiots Guide to Comedy Writing.”  

“He offered the students insight into career opportunities in both the field of television production and the new opportunities advances in technology are providing in new media production,” explained teacher Stuart Stein. 

After speaking and taking questions from the students, Mendrinos worked in small groups with the BCIII students on their current project on the power of video in story telling where they will recreate a sketch from Saturday Night Live.
 
“As the owner of his own production company, Mendrinos was impressed with level of technical sophistication in the BMB studio and remarked that some of our equipment is on par with his own,” added Stein.

BMB is currently gearing up to broadcast the Sprig Gardner Wrestling Tournament and the Mepham music department's winter concerts. 

Kennedy Boys Volleyball Earn Board Honors, Official Town Sign

Kennedy Boys Volleyball Earn Board Honors, Official Town Sign photo
Kennedy Boys Volleyball Earn Board Honors, Official Town Sign photo 2
The Kennedy High School boys volleyball team, recently named Long Island and New York State champions, were honored at the Dec. 5 board of education meeting for their accomplishments.

“You will have that experience forever,” John DeTommaso, superintendent of schools said when he addressed the team and their parents at the Dec. 5 board meeting.  

On Dec. 7, Hempstead Town Councilwoman Erin King Sweeney and Receiver of Taxes Donald Clavin delivered an official sign, marking their championship wins.

“Donald Clavin and I are glad to present this commemorative plaque, recognizing your hard work and dedication on the volleyball court,” King Sweeney told the team.  
 

Calhoun’s VE Team Nabs First Place at Adelphi Challenge

Calhoun’s VE Team Nabs First Place at Adelphi Challenge photo
Calhoun’s VE Team Nabs First Place at Adelphi Challenge photo 2
On Nov. 16, by working with expert business faculty and marketing professionals, students from the Calhoun High School business program put their knowledge of essential and relevant marketing components to work. Their efforts earned them first place and the coveted title of Adelphi Apprentice at the Adelphi Apprentice Challenge.

“They tested their skills and worked collaboratively in teams to develop a marketing plan based on a case assignment that was presented to a panel of esteemed corporate judges,” said teacher and adviser Peter Palazzo.

Students Julia Babbo and Troy Pastor were an integral part of a team that created the most successful marketing plan. 

The team, DefenseLine, also won first place in the Elevator Pitch Contest at the 2018 Business and Entrepreneurship Leadership Conference sponsored by LIU Post and Virtual Enterprise International. The team was among 1,500 students from more than 60 high schools on Long Island to compete and earned a $1,000 prize.

Calhoun Connects Head, Heart & Health at Fair

Calhoun Connects Head, Heart & Health at Fair photo

Students at Calhoun High School made a connection between mind, body and soul at the annual health fair on Nov. 30.

From stationary bicycling and Zumba to fencing and meditative practices, students were given the opportunity to see, touch and perform a variety of health-related activities.

The fair was organized by Keri Cinelli, a health teacher at Calhoun.

“The goal of our health fair is to show students a wide variety of ways to stay active and have fun doing so,” she explained. “Better choices leads to better living.”

To further demonstrate this, there was an “eat this, not that” buffet that offered students healthier eating options.

“It was a comprehensive event that showcased local vendors and activities aimed at promoting a health-conscious state of mind for students,” added Principal Nicole Hollings.

Kennedy Alumni Gifts $15,000 in Science Equipment

Kennedy Alumni Gifts $15,000 in Science Squipment photo

Several members of the Kennedy High School Alumni Association visited the school’s Advanced Science Research room to observe the nearly $15,000 of equipment they purchased for the program.

“These donations to the Science Research and STEM programs have allowed for the purchase of cutting-edge media tools and technological equipment that will empower our students in the fields of advanced science research, engineering, design, robotics and computer science,” said Robert Soel, a science chairperson.

Items included an Afinia H800+ 3D printer, an HP DesignJet poster printer and plotter, an HP multifunction color laser printer, Apple TV and two large screen Samsung Smart TVs, two HP laptop computers, and a custom package of VEX V5 robotics kits for competition and classroom use.

“Gifts like these allows us to preserve the past while connecting with the present,” said Alumni Association President Dr. Gary Morganstern of the Class of 1973.

“Support from our alumni is essential in developing the most dynamic and successful learning community,” added Soel. “This donation coupled with the ongoing connections we foster between our current students and alumni in STEM professions is a testament to their support of the next generation of scientists, engineers, and clinicians.”



Kennedy Boys Volleyball Clinch State Title

Kennedy Boys Volleyball Clinch State Title photo
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Kennedy Boys Volleyball Clinch State Title photo 3
Kennedy Boys Volleyball Clinch State Title photo 4
The Kennedy High School boys volleyball team was victorious against Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake on Nov. 17 to earn the Division II New York State championship title. 

The team advanced to the final with a 3-1 record in pool play including a two-set sweep over defending state champions Eden. 

“This was an amazing run coaching incredible kids,” said coach and health teacher Dennis Ringel. “A state championship is the pinnacle in high school athletics, and to watch this group achieve it was extraordinary. The team showed heart, resilience and determination rising for every challenge that they faced.”

Cooper Moran, Tyler Jarzabek and Justin Steinberg were named to the All-New York State team and Tyler Anderson was named Division II New York State Most Valuable Player. 

While dozens of folks traveled to watch the boys compete, they were also greeted by peers and family members late Saturday evening as their bus pulled into Kennedy.

“A huge thanks to our parents, our administrators, and all of the teachers and students who made the trip to Albany to bring a little bit of Cougar Nation to our state capital," Ringel added.


VIRTUAL ENTERPRISE!

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Adelphi Challenge that we took 1st place on.

Business is what drives our world. How do you start a business? Market it and make it as successful as a major corporation such as Facebook? It all starts with an idea. On Friday, November 16, 2018, by working with expert business faculty and marketing professionals, students from the Calhoun business program put their knowledge of essential and relevant marketing components to work. They tested their skills and work collaboratively in teams to develop a marketing plan based on a case assignment that was presented to a panel of esteemed corporate judges.

Julia Babbo and Troy Pastor were an integral part of a team that created the most successful marketing plan.

They took first place and were awarded the coveted title of the Adelphi Apprentice!

Way to go Calhoun!

Great job by all!

Kennedy’s Morgan Marcus Designs District’s New Art & Music Logo

Kennedy’s Morgan Marcus designs district’s new art & music Logo photo
Kennedy’s Morgan Marcus designs district’s new art & music Logo photo 2
Kennedy’s Morgan Marcus designs district’s new art & music Logo photo 3
Students in the Central High School District were recently given the opportunity to show off their artistic abilities to design a new logo for the art and music department.

Morgan Marcus, a junior at Kennedy High School, created the winning design.

“We were looking for a design that encapsulates the already existing Bellmore-Merrick logo, but with an added art and music flair,” explained Cheryl Fontana, director of fine & performing arts and adult education.

After narrowing down the submissions to the final four designs, voting was opened up to the entire student body and faculty to vote for their favorite via a Google form. 

“Interested students worked on them at home as well as some within their graphic design courses,” added Fontana.

Marcus used Adobe Illustrator in her Creative Suite II class to design the logo.

“I was able to build on the skills I learned last year in Creative Suite I this year to help me create the logo,” Marcus said. “I’ve become increasingly interested in graphic design and it’s something I might consider pursuing in the future.” 

Marcus’ art & design teacher Jessica Conte described her as a “talented art student who works hard.” 

“I have seen her grow and learn through the Adobe programs,” she added. “She is never satisfied with a mediocre product and strives to create meaningful works of art.”

Other finalists included Kennedy’s Gabriella Greiser, Alexander Pakula and Matthew Woghin and Grace Beyer of Mepham High School.

Calhoun, Kennedy ASR Named Finalists in Samsung Competition

Calhoun ASR Named Finalist in Samsung Competition photo
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The Calhoun and Kennedy High School Advanced Science Research programs were chosen as two of five state finalists for the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow competition.  

Calhoun Advanced Science Research teacher Christine Boyce was the sponsor for the winning team. In the months ahead, Boyce and her students will work on a project to address community issues by working with professionals in the STEM fields such as mathematics, physics and computer science.

“We submitted a proposal to solve a complicated issue that affects our community and will now work on an action plan,” explained Boyce. “We are incorporating a multitude of STEM sciences among other resources to show how our concept will be most beneficial to our community, in hopes of capturing the state finalist honor.”

In the months ahead, Kennedy Advanced Science Research teacher Barbara Franklin and her students, led by junior Josh Abramovich, will work on a project to address the need of disinfecting handrails in public spaces to limit the spread of infectious disease.

“The idea for this project came from Josh and my junior research students are working with him to develop the project further,” Franklin added.

As state finalists, the programs qualify to move onto the second phase of the contest where they will compete for the state winner title. Each program also won a Samsung Tablet for their classrooms.

The Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Competition challenges students in grades 6-12 to apply STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) skills to find creative solutions to real-world issues impacting their local communities.

Mepham French Student Wins Essay Contest

Mepham French Student Wins Essay Contest photo
Candace Casimir, a junior at Mepham High School in the Bellmore-Merrick Central School District, recently won first place in a national essay contest sponsored by the Bilingual Fair and French Morning, a web magazine dedicated to French people living in the United States.

The contest was open to all world language middle and high school students in the Tri-State Area and California. Casimir has studied French since seventh grade and speaks French Creole at home, as her parents are of Haitian origin. 

“Candace wrote a thoughtful and vivid essay about the positive impact of bilingualism on her life and academics,” said teacher Charlotte Hayes. 

The prize for Casimir’s award-winning essay is $400, while Mepham will also receive an additional $250.

Students Treat Board During Recognition Month

Students Treat Board During Recognition Month photo

The Bellmore-Merrick Board of Education was at the center of the Nov. 7 meeting, receiving praise and presents from students during School Board Recognition Month.

“When you talk about leading by example, this board does just that,” said Superintendent of Schools John DeTommaso.
Through food, art and song, students offered impressive items and extraordinary presentations. 

“You [the board] are a champion for the arts and it is very special to be part of a community that values that,” said Director Fine & Performing Arts Cheryl Fontana.

Student chefs from C.H.A.M.P., the district’s Culinary and Hospitality Applied Management Program, prepared a feast prior to the meeting, including homemade desserts being offered at the actual meeting.

The Merrick Avenue choral group Word of Mouth, led by director Dana Brandwein, sang “Havana,” highlighted by beatboxer and Sanford H. Calhoun High School student, Julia Kirpalani.

Grand Avenue Middle School Art Club students along with their faculty adviser Nicholas Giordano presented potted plants in which they painted the district’s logo.

Calhoun High School art teacher Heather Lohr created a colorful wall art piece inspired by artists Piet Mondrian and Louise Nevelson.

“We really wanted to incorporate a collaborative piece to further showcase Bellmore-Merrick’s unified approach to ensure the success of six different, respective schools,” explained Lohr. 

Kennedy High School ASR Students Visit SPARK

Kennedy High School ASR Students Visit SPARK photo
The Kennedy High School Advanced Science Research students recently attended Northwell Heath SPARK. The team explored surgical careers at Glen Cove Hospital.  The program allows students to explore and gain hands-on experience in future health-related fields. 
 

Students, Staff Win Awards at Self-Advocacy Association Conference

Students, Staff Win Awards at Self-Advocacy Association Conference photo

On Oct, 30, members of the Bellmore-Merrick Central High School District, along with parents and students attended the 2018 Self-Advocacy Association of New York State Conference in Melville.

The staff present were presented with an award for “the Standard of Excellence of teaching their students, parents and staff the importance of Self-Advocacy.” 

Cheryl Gitlitz, transition coordinator, Theresa Catalina, Special Education Chairperson at Calhoun High School, Emily Paluseo, Assistant Director of Special Education and Eric Arlin, Director of Special Education were present on behalf of the district. Mary Jo Kennedy, the vocational counselor from South Oaks Career and Educational Counseling Center was also present. Additionally, parents from SEPTA Alyssa Gecsedi and Gail Broder-Katz were in attendance.

In addition to the district being recognized, Brett and Scott Weisbrot from Sanford H. Calhoun High School were presented with the Mary Margaret Quinn Award. They were nominated by Emily Paluseo, the district’s assistant director of special education and pupil personnel services for their work as youth advocates.

“The award is named after Mary Margaret Quinn, an remarkable young woman who spoke up for herself and truly lived a life of distinction,” explained Paluseo. “The Weisbrots and their parents were present to receive this award. They both follow in Mary Margaret’s footsteps as they advocate for themselves and others on a regular basis.”

The Weisbrots will graduate from Calhoun High School this June with High School Diplomas.

Mepham’s Battle of the Classes Raises $5K for Charity

Mepham’s Battle of the Classes photo

On Nov. 8, more 700 students from Mepham High School packed the gym at the Brookside School for the biggest, loudest and most incredible Battle of the Classes to date.

“It was by far the best Battle of the Classes and the ultimate demonstration of what it means to be a Pirate, showing school spirit and coming together to give back,” explained organizer and social studies teacher, Kerry Dennis.

The students participated in pre-events all week including Penny Wars, Class Color Day and American Pride Day in order to earn points toward their final score.  The night was emceed by Special Education teacher Anthony Augugliaro and the events included oversized volleyball, relay races like the scooter relay, three-legged race and chicken relay, tug of war, a dance presented by each class and the famous Pirate Relay. 

“This year's scores were close as each class was competitive and victorious throughout the night, including the faculty team that defeated the classes in oversized volleyball and the three-legged race,” added Dennis. “But in the end, the class of 2019 proved to be victorious.”

The night was covered by the Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting program and coverage can be found on their YouTube page. 

The night had a more serious meaning, as it raised $5,000 for Building Homes for Heroes, the selected charity for this semester's Senior Service Learning Project. 

To date, the Mepham community has raised over $18,000 from additional initiatives like the Flag Field of Honor and donations in their effort to gift US Navy Petty Officer Ryan Shannon a mortgage free home.

Merrick Avenue MS, Grand Avenue MS Pull Off Sweet Drives

Merrick Avenue MS, Grand Avenue MS Pull Off Sweet Drives photo

The Merrick Avenue Middle School Student Council hosted a post-Halloween candy collection to support members of the armed forces stationed overseas.

They partnered with students from Levy-Lakeside Elementary School in the Merrick School District for a successful Operation Sweet Tooth. 

“The donated candy is sent to troops stationed around the world to provide some extra sweetness during the holiday season as Thanksgiving approaches,” explained Merrick Avenue Principal Dr. Taryn Johnson.

At Grand Avenue, the Builders Club sponsored Operation Gratitude, where students were also invited to donate leftover sweets.

“It’s just one more way that Grand CARES,” added Grand Avenue Principal Carlo Conte, referring to the school’s mission statement of encouraging students to be compassionate, accountable, respectful, equitable and strong.

Merrick Avenue faculty advisers Lucrezia Colangelo and Joe Amador along with Grand Avenue faculty adviser Sean Doherty guided students through the process. 

MAP Key Club Hosts Taco Tuesday Fundraiser

MAP Key Club Hosts Taco Tuesday Fundraiser photo
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Meadowbrook Alternative Program’s Key Club members, including Vice President Matthew Alexander, peddled tacos for a cause on Nov. 13. 

The club’s Taco Tuesday fundraiser raised more than $100 in half an hour for the district’s food pantry, the Community Cupboard. 
“The funds raised will be used to purchase 50 roasting pans for the Community Cupboards’ Thanksgiving baskets, which will be assembled on Nov. 15 with the assistance of students and staff districtwide,” explained MAP Key Club faculty adviser Catrina Christensen.

“Families in our area really need our help and it’s important for us to do what we can,” added MAP Key Club President Grace Kavanah.

Calhoun’s Noah Marchuck Invited to Present at LI Psychology Fair

Calhoun’s Noah Marchuk Invited to Present at LI Psychology Fair photo
Calhoun High School junior Noah Marchuck was recently invited to present at the 2019 Long Island High School Psychology Fair on Jan. 10, 2019 at Roslyn High School.

One of only 30 students chosen across Long Island, Marchuck will present his research project “The Degree of Autonomy, Competence and Relatedness of High School Students in Required English Courses vs Elective Courses.”

His research centered around a 40-year old theory on self-determination. 

“Basically there are three psychological needs that everyone needs to possess in order to be successful: autonomy, competence and relatedness,” he explained.

Students answered two questionnaires on their required and elective course to determine which one they would succeed. Elective courses proved the theory correct by a large margin, according to Marchuck’s research.

“People have a desire to move forward when they’re involved in something you are interested in,” he added.

Marchuck obtained a mentor during his sophomore year to complete the study.

“Noah is an upbeat, hardworking and confident individual,” said his adviser Jennifer Pefanis. “He knew that his passion lied in the field of psychology and he was driven to get started on his research as soon as possible. This year, he was able to analyze his results and he is eagerly awaiting the opportunity to present his findings.”

The Long Island High School Psychology Fair is a forum for the presentation and celebration of students' research in the field of psychology. The fair affords students an opportunity to present their work to an audience of their peers as well as a group of expert judges. 

Mepham Boys Soccer Clinches County Title

Mepham Boys Soccer Clinches County Title photo
Mepham Boys Soccer Clinches County Title photo 2
The Mepham High School Boys Soccer team captured the Class A Nassau County title, defeating Garden City High School, 2-1 on Oct. 31.

“For most of the players on this team, this season has been three years in the making,” explained Coach Zachary Gosse, who is also a teacher at the district’s Meadowbrook Alternative Program.

Gosse spoke of his coaching mantra, “to make progress each and every day.”

“The boys bought into the program and our goals, and as a result have truly become a family,” he added. “The chemistry and love for the game correlates with this season’s results.”

On Nov. 9, elected officials from the Town of Hempstead, Receiver of Taxes Donald Clavin and Councilmember Dennis Dunne, Sr. presented the team with a sign, acknowledging their accomplishment. 

Middle Schools Get into Halloween Spirit

Earlier in the week, Grand Avenue and Merrick Avenue Middle Schools celebrated Halloween by wearing our Costumes for a Cause.

At Grand Avenue, students paid $1 to dress up and the money is then donated to a charity.
“What an absolutely amazing display of spirit and creativity,” said Grand Avenue Principal Carlo Conte. “The students, faculty and staff overwhelmingly participated.”

This year’s costume contest winners at Grand Avenue include; seventh-graders Isabella Jensen (voodoo puppet), Lindsey Kerner (skeleton), and Kieran Kehoe (zipper laker) and eighth-graders Ashton Martire (Freddy Krueger), Riley Fried (angler fish), and McKayla Parra (Little Red Riding Hood with the wolf’s head).

At Merrick Avenue, students donated non-perishable food items to be donated to the district’s Community Cupboard.

Team 5 teachers Matthew Chicco, Michael Hagens, Deanne Junior, Mary-Katherine Michels, Allison Roumbos and Jennifer Verwys collaborated for a superhero theme.

Unwanted candy can be donated at the middle schools to benefit Operations Sweet Tooth, a collection that supports armed forces overseas.

“Students are encouraged to bring in any wrapped candy to donate to this most worthy cause,” added Merrick Avenue Principal Dr. Taryn Johnson.



VIDEO: Mepham Installs Flag Field of Honor

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English Teachers Recognized as Educators of Excellence

English Teachers Recognized as Educators of Excellence photo
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Two teachers from the Central High School District were recently recognized by New York State English Council as Educators of Excellence.

Tanya Cestaro of Calhoun High School and Rebecca Levy of Grand Avenue Middle School were honored at an awards ceremony at the NYSEC annual conference held in Albany on Oct. 19. 

Both the teachers and their respective English chairpersons Kim Serpe and Mary Donnelly attended.

“Ms. Levy serves as a model educator for our district and a leader among her peers,” said Donnelly. “In 2017, Ms. Levy shared her time and talents by contributing to the Humanities 7 curriculum writing project. The success of the district’s Humanities initiative wouldn’t be the same without Ms. Levy’s numerous contributions.”

“Always looking to develop her teaching repertoire, Ms. Cestaro can be counted on to attend professional development conferences and to embrace teaching in a co-teach environment such as in Senior Experience and collaborative programs,” added Serpe.

The application process included a letter of nomination and letters of recommendation from supervisors and colleagues. They will be honored again by the Long Island Language Arts Council in May.


Kennedy Students Transform Halls Into Halloween Fun

Kennedy Students Transform Halls Into Halloween Fun photo

Students at Kennedy High School treated children from the Reinhard Early Childhood Center to an indoor Halloween festival on Oct. 25.

Little visitors — future Cougars — traipsed the decorated halls in costume, tricked or treated, crafted and even turned the teens into mummies using toilet paper.

“This event has been very helpful in fostering growth in our school community and bringing elementary school students and families to their future high school,” said Principal Gerard Owenburg.

Fun was cooking in the C.H.A.M.P. (Culinary and Hospitality Applied Management Program) kitchen, as culinary arts students prepped cupcakes for decorating and assisted with indulgent sprinkle applications. 

From monster making crafts and pumpkin decorating to carnival style games and face painting, the high schoolers were bright-eyed and bushy-tailed all afternoon, especially football player Liam Orr who dressed as a giant inflatable unicorn.

Mepham Welcomes Alumnus/Veteran Kevin Vaughn

Mepham Welcomes Alumnus/Veteran Kevin Vaughn photo
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On Oct. 31, United States Marine Corps Veteran and Mepham High School Class of 2007 graduate, Kevin Vaughn visited with the Participation in Government and Senior Experience students as part of their service learning project partnership with Building Homes for Heroes. 

As a United States Marine, Vaughn did two tours in Afghanistan and during his second tour in 2011 was injured when his armored vehicle struck an explosive device. As a result, Vaugan lost his left leg and suffered back and arm injuries, spending 15 months at Walter Reed Military Hospital, where he endured several surgeries, and a grueling rehabilitation. 

In November of 2015, Vaughn was gifted a home in North Merrick from Building Homes for Heroes. 
“He spoke about the significant impact Building Homes for Heroes has had on his life and thanked the seniors for their efforts in raising awareness and funds for America's veterans,” Social Studies Teacher Kerry Dennis said.  

Since September, the Mepham community has raised over $15,000 for Building Homes for Heroes. The class selected United States Navy Petty Officer Ryan Shannon to receive a mortgage free home on their behalf in Illinois this winter.  

To help them reach their goal by visiting their fundraising page, click here: https://help.buildinghomesforheroes.org/campaign/mepham-high-school-supports-building-homes-for-heroes/c205592
 

Calhoun’s Virtual Enterprise Team Wins Elevator Pitch Contest

Calhoun’s Virtual Enterprise Team Wins Elevator Pitch Contest photo
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After coming across novelty color-changing nail polish, Christie Powell, a member of the Calhoun High School Virtual Enterprise team had the idea to put that technology to life-saving use.

She brought the concept to her teammates in Peter Palazzo’s class and the idea of DefenseLine was born. 

“DefenseLine is a health and public safety company that specializes in the protection against date rape drugs such as Ketamine, GHB and Rohypnol,” explained Powell.

The team’s conceptual business won first place in the Elevator Pitch Contest at the 2018 Business and Entrepreneurship Leadership Conference sponsored by LIU Post and Virtual Enterprise International. The team was among than 1,500 students from over 60 high schools on Long Island to compete and earned a $1,000 prize.

“DefenseLine offers many products such as nail polish, key chains, rings, straws and coasters that contain a chemical indicator that changes colors when it detects harmful drugs,” added Palazzo.

A presentation was completed by the entire team, each contributing insight on various aspects of a business model. Palazzo said he was proud to see the students come together in such a collaborative effort. 

CEO Brenden Rosario gave the pitch at the conference.

“If this concept were to be released, it would have a great impact around the globe,” he said, citing an increase in sexual assault in both male and females.

Student team members include Finn Campbell, Giavanna Correa, Brendan DeFalco, Jake Edwards, Ryan Ferrulli, Samantha Fortmeyer, Elizabeth Herman, Dylan Hughes-McTurk, Eric Immel, Margaret Joseph, Brittney Krause, Sydney McGinley, Dylan Muccini, Christie Powell, Emily Rawson, Kirsten Ringnalda, Brenden Rosario, Frank Sturiano, Sarah Tappeto, Harrison Valdes and Liam Walley.

This is the second time in three years that a VE team from Calhoun has accomplished this feat. From here, they go on to compete at the regional level. 




Grand Avenue Art Club Decorates Donation Bags for Thanksgiving Meals

Grand Avenue Art Club Decorates Donation Bags for Thanksgiving Meals photo

The Art Club at Grand Avenue Middle School has been busy decorating Thanksgiving bags for local families in need.

On Oct. 19, the students designed and decorated brown paper bags that will hold a holiday meal for a family. The meals are being prepared and donated by Runyon’s in Seaford.

“Knowing they are contributing to make someone else's holiday special, the student-artists think of all the things they have to be thankful for as they have a great time drawing,” said teacher and club adviser Nick Giordano. “It also fosters individual creativity during our club time.”




Grand Avenue History Class Visited by Army Reservist to Tie in Veterans Day Unit

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On Oct. 11, Tara Moore's This Day in History class was visited by Ms. A. Marcanotos, a U.S. Army Reservist, and mother of eighth grade student Sabrina Singh.

“She came to talk about her experience being in the US Army, as both a current reservist and as a veteran of the war in Iraq,” explained Moore. “Her visit culminated the unit about this day in history, November 11th, which was the end of combat during World War I and later became acknowledged as Veterans Day.”

Students participated in a school-wide poster contest to raise awareness about Veterans Day and to thank veterans for their service.

 

Drama Club Welcomes Broadway Performer Kristoffer Cusick

With coordination between English teacher, Meg Walsh and Drama Director, Rebecca Levy, the Grand Avenue Drama Club welcomed Kristoffer Cusick, a Broadway performer who has performed as Fiyero in Wicked, among many other roles. He shared stories about his experiences in school, on stage and offered insight and advice to the future actors and actresses. Students were thrilled to have a professional straight from the Great White Way who listened to them perform and gave them feedback to make their performances more stage-ready.

Cougars Make Strides Against Breast Cancer

Breast Cancer

On Sunday, Oct. 21, members of the Kennedy High School football team participated in the annual Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk held at Jones Beach.

“This is the fifth consecutive year that Kennedy football has walked as a team,” said Coach and Athletic Director Craig Papach. “It’s important for our student athletes to make valuable contributions to their community.”

 

Bellmore-Merrick's Community Cupboard

Please see attached informational flyer

Attachments:

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