District Holds Unifying 5K Walk/Run

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Bellmore-Merrick CHSD held its One Voice, One Message 5K Walk/Run from Grand Avenue Middle School to Merrick Avenue Middle School on March 21.

More than 400 people registered for the inaugural run, while dozens more turned out to show their support for the participants despite the cold and slushy weather. Students from all six buildings pitched in, either by registering, or volunteering their time to help launch the monumental event.

The One Voice, One Message 5K began in the parking lot of Grand Avenue, continued on to Merrick Avenue and then circled back to the rear parking lot at Grand Avenue.

The winner in the male category was Chris Perillo at 16:56. The female winner was Doreen Steen, who crossed the line at 17:57.

The event was a symbolic gesture of solidarity among the six schools that comprise the district. Proceeds from the 5K were donated to support pediatric cancer research at Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital. The event raised a net total of $10,860 for the hospital.

“In spite of the surprise spring snowstorm, the event was a tremendous success,” said Dr. Joseph Netto, one of the event’s organizers. “From the overwhelming community support to the strong showing from the district's six schools, the 5K indeed demonstrated the principle of ‘One Voice, One Message,’ while highlighting Bellmore-Merrick's giving nature.”

State and local politicians also turned out to lend their support and congratulate the organizers, including Hempstead Town Supervisor Kate Murray and New York State Sen. Michael Venditto.

Browse the photo gallery to catch the race from start to finish.

Mepham Chops Locks for Love

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Mepham Boasts Regional Poetry Out Loud Winner

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Mepham senior Jaime Marvin advanced to the New York State level of the national Poetry Out Loud competition after winning the regional contest at Farmingdale State College earlier this month.

The Poetry Out Loud competition challenges students to recite a number of poems from memory in an entertaining and powerful way, using proper enunciation, volume and emphasis.

Marvin won first place for her dramatic recitation of three poems: “I carry your heart with me (I carry it in)” by E. E. Cummings, “To Autumn” by John Keats and “The End of Science Fiction” by Lisel Mueller.

Marvin’s first-place win advanced her to the New York State competition in Syracuse on March 9. Mepham senior Lisa Condoluci also competed to great acclaim in the regional contest. The two practiced under the leadership of teacher Nicole Maresca with the help of Mepham English Department Chairperson Marie Netto.

All three high schools in the Bellmore-Merrick Central High School District participate in the Poetry Out Loud program.    

Mepham Students Attend Leadership Symposium at Hofstra

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Students in Sarah Bender’s AP Government & Politics classes attended a symposium on the Evaluation of Presidential Leadership at Hofstra University on March 10. 

The symposium featured commentary and analysis by Hofstra’s Kalikow Center Senior Presidential Fellows, Republican Party consultant Ed Rollins and former Vermont governor and presidential candidate Howard Dean. 

Prior to the symposium, each teacher submitted the winners of the essay assignment in which students had to select one of three questions to answer.  The questions were:

•    How can the White House and Congress overcome the obstacles of divided government and work together in 2015?
•    What are the costs and benefits of President Obama’s decision to pursue immigration reform by executive order, and how can he make progress with Congress on this issue in 2015?
•    In his remaining time in office, how is President Obama most likely to achieve “change we can believe in,” as he promised in 2008, and establish an enduring legacy for his presidency?

The two essay award winners –Samantha Lanza and James Nicklaus—got a chance to meet with Rollins and Governor Dean after the symposium.

Freshmen Think About Safe Technology Use

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A special agent with the FBI Cyber Crime unit paid a visit to the district over three days in February and March to speak with ninth-graders about the dangers of the Internet and how to make positive decisions when using technology.

FBI Special Agent Danielle Messineo led students at all three high schools through a PowerPoint presentation that covered everything from cyberbullying to Internet predators to inappropriate texting.

Messineo reminded students that if they are on social networking sites such as Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, they should keep their accounts set to private, only accept requests from people they know, and avoid profile pictures that might give predators a clue about where they live or what school they attend.

When presenting on cyberbullying, Messineo showed a sobering video recorded by Amanda Todd, a 14-year-old girl who committed suicide days after recording the video, in which she begged for help from anyone who might be watching. The video reminded students to think about potentially tragic consequences before engaging in ridiculing their peers, especially online.

The presentation also emphasized that students should refrain from sending inappropriate photographs and text messages, even to those whom they trust, because of the viral capabilities of modern technology. A clever video showed just how quickly a young girl’s racy photograph sent to her boyfriend could spread through the entire school and eventually back to her own family members.

The Internet safety and cyberbullying assembly was organized by the district’s Community Parent Center, led by director Wendy Tepfer. Messineo visited Kennedy High School on Feb. 25. She visited Calhoun the next day and finished out her visits at Mepham on March 3.


Mepham Students Mean Business

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Eight members of Mepham High School’s Future Business Leaders of America club recently took part in the Spring District Meeting Competition at Molloy College.

The students competed against several other Long Island high schools in events such as economics, business law, public speaking, business calculations and marketing. Mepham’s Nicholas Sery took second place in both economics and business calculations.

Congratulations to Nicholas and the entire FBLA club!