Mepham Homecoming Helps Stock Food Pantry


It was a sea of maroon and grey on Oct. 15 as the Mepham High School Pirates took on H. Frank Carey High School on homecoming.
After a fierce battle, the Pirates fell to the Seahawks, 36-33. School spirit was infectious as fans cheered and the band, directed by Brian Neiderman, kept the tempo upbeat.

Tim Tracy and Katie Carron were crowned homecoming king and queen during halftime after being paraded around the track in a pirate ship float.

“Homecoming is always a special time at Mepham,” said Principal Michael Harrington. “It’s wonderful to see the community come together to celebrate school pride.”

Mepham High School social worker Theana Cheliotes and the school’s Key Club adviser said the club was inspired to participate in the district’s new initiative to help develop a food pantry at the central administration building.

“This weekend’s Homecoming for Hunger food collection served as a great kick off,” added Cheliotes. “You can say it was a touchdown.”

Mepham’s Immanuel Mellis Named 2016 Young Composer

At the Oct. 6 board of wducation meeting, Immanuel Mellis was recognized for being named a 2016 Young Composer by the New York State School Music Association.

“Immanuel Mellis is a wonderful young man and student who is mature beyond his years,” said Board President Janet Goller during his introduction. “His qualities of self-sufficiency and independence will translate beautifully to his post-secondary school of choice, which currently includes options such as: Julliard, Northeastern University, and Oberlin College & Conservatory. Immanuel has applied a confident sense-of-self to every task and activity that he engages in, setting goals and achieving each and every one of them.”

Fulfilling a full, rigorous academic schedule all four years of high school, Mellis has always applied himself wholeheartedly to his academic commitments.  He has always made sure to take advantage of the countless elective, college, honors and AP level opportunities available at Mepham High School.  

Additionally, Immanuel is completing science research in Music Conceptualization and investigating a socio-psychological approach to music. This research focused on how human beings cognitively interpret music rhythms.

“Immanuel is an incredible, multi-talented musician and composer,” said Goller. “As the viola section leader in the Mepham String Ensemble, he is one of its brightest stars. His latest composition earned him a spot to have his piece performed at the NYSSMA All-State Conference in December.  This is a huge honor, as only 14 students were selected from the state. He will be composing and conducting a piece for the Mepham String Ensemble this year.”

Mepham French Students Welcome Guest Speaker

Students of French language at Mepham High School in the Bellmore-Merrick Central High School District were treated to a guest visit from Elizabeth Featherstone, a native of France who has lived and taught French in England for more than 35 years. Featherstone is the aunt of Mepham's new French teacher, Charlotte Hayes.

"When I found out my aunt would be visiting New York for two weeks, I immediately thought of what she could bring to my French classes," she said.

Students prepared questions about her dual French-English identity, her experiences traveling abroad and the importance of knowing multiple languages in the global age.  

"Knowing another language permits you the world, brings it to your fingertips and lessens the unknown between you and someone from a different country,” Featherstone told students. “Speaking a foreign language also works the brain on a deeper, more intellectual level.”

Hayes' students enjoyed the experience and appreciated being exposed to a native French speaker and shared their enthusiasm.
"Ms. Featherstone's visit to our class was 'très magnifique,” said junior Michael Laupheimer. “She was very energetic and expressive. This helped us understand her French more and gave us an idea about how various cultures helped shape who she is. Her humor also allowed us to connect with her and feel comfortable asking questions. She was very easy to talk to. It was truly an honor to have someone like her speak to us and share her life with us."

"I loved hearing her life story growing up in France,” added senior Kelsey White. “It was interesting to get a perspective from someone who has lived in both France and England."
Mepham French students are looking forward to many more unique learning opportunities including their upcoming trip to Canada this fall.

Mepham Leo Club Made Official

Students in the Mepham High School first-ever Leo Club were recently inducted as an official Lion’s Club.

The ceremony, held at the Nassau County Bar Association, was hosted by International President Chancellor Bob Corlew.
The club was created by students and is advised by Bellmore Lion and Mepham science teacher Josephine Parlagreco.

“This was also all done with the support of school board member (and district governor 20-K2) Nina Lanci who has been a tremendous advocate for this partnership,” said Deputy Superintendent Dr. Mara Bollettieri.

More than 50 students were inducted into the school’s club on Sept. 19. They have service-based plans for assisting the community this year.

Bellmore-Merrick Salutes 11 Commended Students

Eleven students from the district have been named Commended Students in the 2016 National Merit Scholarship Program.

From Calhoun High School: David Bekore, Matthew Garber, Julia Losner and Rebecca Unz. From Kennedy High School: Ruth Bergman, Chloe Davis, Rebecca Stekol and Alixandra Wilens. From Mepham High School: Rachel Jozwik, Christopher Rosenthal and Zachary Weiss.

Commended Students placed among the top 5 percent of the country out of more than 1.5 million students who entered the competition by virtue of taking the PSAT last year.

“This is a true testament of these students’ individual ability to tackle a challenging exam and come out on top,” said Superintendent of Schools John DeTommaso.

Mepham Leos Roar like Lions

In keeping with the Leo Club’s mission of altruism and philanthropy, students at Mepham High School kicked off their induction into the district’s first Leo Club by hosting a donation drive for the homeless.

Sponsored by the Bellmore Lions Club, the Leos live by the motto, “we serve,” and have planned several acts of community service including visiting the Bethany House, which assists homeless women and children.

“I love helping the community,” said Amna Minhas, senior and club president. “We get to make a lot of people happy.”

Club adviser Josephine Parlagreco, a Lion herself, has encouraged the members to participate in many projects such as food drives and community outreach.

“She gives her heart and soul to anything she’s involved with at our school,” said Principal Michael Harrington.

This will be the largest Leo Club in the district, explained said Nina Lanci, district governor 20-K2 and school board trustee. The Lions have long-assisted Mepham and the school district with projects such as Habitat for Humanity and holiday drives.
“It feels so good to give back to our community,” Lanci told the room of inductees.

Three HS Students named National Merit Semifinalists

Three students in the district have been named semifinalists in the 62nd annual National Merit Scholarship Program.

Alaina Anderson of Calhoun, Maximilian Bazil of Kennedy and Rachel Jozwick of Mepham all received this distinction.

“Having students earn this recognition is a symbol of their test preparedness and academic work ethic,” said Assistant Superintendent, Curriculum and Instruction David Seinfeld.

The National Merit Scholarship Program is an academic competition for recognition and scholarships that began in 1955. High school students enter the National Merit Program by taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. Approximately 16,000 students, or approximately one-third of the 50,000 high scorers qualified as semifinalists. Finalists will be notified in February.

Bellmore-Merrick Central welcomes incoming freshmen

Ninth-graders across Bellmore-Merrick Central were recently treated to educational and entertaining freshman orientations at their new buildings.
At Mepham High School, students enrolled in the district’s Broadcast Communication tested out equipment in the new state-of-the-art studio. Students within the district can apply for this four-year program, housed at Mepham.

In addition to building tours, students learned about the goals and expectations of the program for the upcoming year.

At Calhoun High School, senior student leaders hosted small group discussions with incoming freshmen about “Being a Calhoun Student.”
"Students were split into small groups and had the opportunity to hear from the seniors and ask them questions,” explained Vice Principal Dr. Neil Testa. "They were also tasked with exploring, ‘what would I want to tell the ninth grade me about the next four years at Calhoun?”

Upperclassmen at Kennedy High School were also on hand to assist, offering insight and advice to help with a successful first year in high school.

“Lisa Scherer, the class advisor, kicked off their first community service project for the year, collecting school supplies for a school in Louisiana devastated by recent flooding,” said Principal Lorraine Poppe. “The day ended with Michael DiGiovanni and his C.H.A.M.P. [Culinary and Hospitality Applied Management Program] and students hosting a barbecue for the freshmen.”

Girls Volleyball Teams Compete in Friendship Tourney

Kennedy High School recently hosted a Bellmore-Merrick girls volleyball friendship tournament with Mepham and Calhoun high schools.

“The teams had a great day playing,” said girls varsity volleyball coach Katie Sheehan. “This tournament used to be a yearly tradition and I decided to bring it back this year.”

Photo Caption: Members of the Kennedy, Mepham and Calhoun girls varsity volleyball teams.