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Young Scientists at JQA Share Findings and Excitement

Young Scientists at JQA Share Findings and Excitement

As part of an in-depth Teacher’s College science unit, students in Laura Oddo and Vanessa Pizzo’s co-teaching class at JQA worked as active scientists, looking closely at items from nature such as shells, rocks, fossils and plants. The students observed, labeled and listed the objects, just as a real scientist would.

“I loved this unit because it incorporated science, reading and writing,” said Oddo. “The kids were excited to use the magnifying glasses to look closely and describe the features they see.”

Said Pizzo, “I enjoyed watching the students use new vocabulary to share their excitement and findings as well as helping one another and comparing their discoveries.”'




Business Students Earn 21 Trophies at DECA Competition

Business Students Earn 21 Trophies at DECA Competition 1
Business Students Earn 21 Trophies at DECA Competition 2

At DECA’s Suffolk County Regional Competition, held on Jan. 3 at Suffolk County Community College, 55 Deer Park High School students competed against more than 1,400 participants from 26 other Suffolk schools, with 21 students honored with trophies and another seven earning honorable mention.

Trophy winners included Hallie Feldman in the Apparel & Accessories Marketing event, Vicken Khazar in Entrepreneurship, William Buckley and Sean Sanchez  in Financial Services Team, Khaja Ibrahim and Tyler Tesoriero in Hospitality Services Team, Jessica Siford in Hotel & Lodging Management, Omar Rahim and Amar Qasir in Human Resources Management, Navan Hassan in Marketing Communications, Khabiba Shahid and Esteysy Yanes-Amaya in Personal Financial Literacy, Jasleen Kaur and Keryn Shames in Principles of Business Management, Mohammed Raiyan and Chaim Shames in Principles of Finance, Deirdre Burke in Principles of Hospitality, Alisha Suhail in Quick Serve Restaurant Management, Alyssa Robb in Restaurant & Food Service Management, and Eiman Nawaz and Yasmeen Syedda-Hensley in Travel & Tourism Team. These students will have to opportunity to compete at the state competition in Rochester in March, in an attempt to qualify for the national competition in Atlanta, Georgia.

Honorable mentions were given to Hadi Alaouieh in Accounting Applications, Gabby Kemmerer and Julianna Knice in Buying & Merchandising Team, Michael Golann in Human Resources Management, Michael Buffa in Sports & Entertainment Marketing, and Max Hofstetter and Brennan Miller in Sports & Entertainment Marketing Team.



May Moore Second-Grader Wins Veterans Art Contest

May Moore Second-Grader Wins Veterans Art Contest
May Moore second-grader Erin Wong was recently honored by the Melville law firm Genser Dubow Genser & Cona for winning the firm’s veterans-themed These Colors Don’t Run art contest.


High School Welcomes 61 New National Honor Society Members

High School Welcomes 61 New National Honor Society Members
A total of 61 high school students were inducted into the National Honor Society in a Dec. 11 ceremony at the school’s auditorium.

The evening began with words from National Honor Society adviser Seth Margolin, Principal Charles Cobb and the guest speaker, Deer Park ELA Curriculum Associate Michelle Kwon. In addition, new Suffolk County Legislators Susan Berland and Tom Donnelly introduced themselves and provided words of wisdom just before the inductees took their oath of membership, administered by NHS President Bianca Punger. In the event’s highlight, current members in attendance joined in unity with the new inductees for the traditional candle lighting ceremony.

“We congratulate and welcome these new members, who bring new energy in support of our continuing work as leaders in the Deer Park community,” said Margolin.

Frost’s Cheery Chamber Choir Sings for Seniors

Frost’s Cheery Chamber Choir Sings for Seniors
Bringing holiday cheer through song, the chamber choir from Robert Frost and director Youngsun Koh-Lee visited two local nursing homes – Our Lady of Consolation in West Islip and Sunrise Senior Living in Dix Hills – on Dec. 21 to sing for residents.

Girl Scout Depre Donates Buddy Benches to JQA

Girl Scout Depre Donates Buddy Benches to JQA

As part of her Girl Scout Gold Award project, high school student Lauren Depre made a pair of buddy benches for the district’s John Quincy Adams Primary School, for the use of any student in need of a buddy during recess time. JQA’s sudents have been instructed to keep an eye out for any student sitting on one of the benches who they can be a good friend to and include in their play.

“These benches will serve as a tool to help bring our students closer together and to ensure that each student feels included and loved,” said Principal Christopher Molinelli. “On behalf of the entire JQA staff, I would like to thank Lauren for her hard work and donation.”

Depre was honored for her leadership and generosity by Superintendent Eva Demyen at a December Board of Education business meeting.

JFK Student-Musicians Display Dedication at Winter Concerts

JFK Student-Musicians Display Dedication at Winter Concerts

Band, chorus and orchestra students at JFK displayed their growing musical skills at a pair of stellar winter concerts, held on Dec. 14 in the school’s auditorium in front of a large crowd of family and friends.

“We are so proud to work with such wonderful young musicians,” said chorus director Kristen Lombardo. “Our students show such dedication for their instruments and musical ensembles. They are a pleasure to work with, and we look forward to the spring season.”

Phenomenal Nights of Music at Robert Frost

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Music students at Robert Frost showcased their talents and brought holiday cheer at the school’s annual winter concerts, held on Dec. 6 and 7.

The sixth-grade band, directed by Eric Gotteman, opened the first night with Michael Sweeney’s “Royal Tower,” and combined with the sixth-grade chorus, directed by Youngsun Koh-Lee, for a heartwarming rendition of “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year.” The sixth-grade, led by Maria Wingert, entertained with “The Dreidel” and Mark Williams’ “Fancy Fiddles.”

On the second night of memorable music, highlights included an excerpt from the “Nutcracker Suite” performed by the eighth-grade orchestra, conducted by Wingert. The seventh- and eighth-grade band, led by Michael Livorno, pleased the audience with tunes like Robert Sheldon’s “Sugar Creek Orchestra,” and Koh-Lee’s seventh- and eighth-grade chorus brought smiles with material that ranged from Vivaldi to “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town.”

“This was a phenomenal concert, and Deer Park is proud to work with such incredible musicians,” said Bradley Murphy, the district's curriculum associate for fine and performing arts.

Marching Falcons Honored by Fire Department

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Marching Falcons Honored by Fire Department 2
During a Dec. 12 Board of Education meeting at the high school, the Deer Park Fire Department presented a “Best Band” trophy to the Deer Park Marching Falcons for the ensemble’s performance at the department’s annual holiday parade.

Accepting the trophy were band members Ginele Tanis, Kailey Tenn and Marissa Woods, band director Jerry Cannarozzo, and curriculum associate for fine and performing arts Bradley Murphy.

“The Marching Falcons were honored to receive this trophy for being the best band at the annual holiday parade, and we look forward to participating in this wonderful community event next year,” said Cannarozzo.

Gingerbread at May Moore, a Heartwarming Holiday Tradition

Gingerbread at May Moore, a Heartwarming Holiday Tradition

Continuing a heartwarming annual tradition, Tammy Cotrone’s kindergarten class at May Moore was recently visited by her students’ families for a happy morning of decorating gingerbread houses.

“This is an all-time favorite holiday activity and has become one of the most anticipated holiday traditions in my classroom,” said Cotrone. “The children love building and decorating gingerbread houses with their classmates and families.”




Patriotic Penpals at JQA

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First-graders in Linda Stow’s classroom at Deer Park’s John Quincy Adams Primary School wrote letters earlier this month to U.S. Army troops serving overseas, sending them along with a bucket of candy. The patriotic youngsters received photos and letters in return from the service members.

JQA Learners Benefit from Literacy Centers

JQA Learners Benefit from Literacy Centers

By fundraising through Donors Choose, teacher Jackie Stein was recently able to purchase a variety of literacy centers to help her students at JQA learn their sight words.

“With the broad range of learners in my classroom, literacy centers is one way I can reach all students,” said Stein. “My students love the engaging games and interacting with each ot

Undefeated Girls Tennis Team Honored

Undefeated Girls Tennis Team Honored

The high school’s girls varsity tennis team placed first in their division this fall, finishing the season undefeated and earning recognition at the Suffolk County Junior Tennis League Awards dinner. The team’s coach, Caryn Kaplan, was awarded Coach of the Year.

Robert Frost's 50th Anniversary Honored

Robert Frost's 50th Anniversary Honored

The Nov. 28 Board of Education meeting was held for one night at Robert Frost Middle School’s cafeteria, as a special tribute honoring the school’s 50th anniversary.

Frost was founded on Nov. 10, 1967 as Deer Park Junior High School, and at the time, a time capsule was buried in the foundation. Eliana Levey, the current principal, told the audience that the metal box contained facts about the school, and that a new capsule was being created for 2017 with student help, featuring current objects of children’s culture including emojis and spinners. A commemorative video (click here to view) was shown, depicting the history of the school and bringing the audience back in time.

“The entire Robert Frost community came together to celebrate this momentous anniversary,” said Levey. “We chose to highlight the work of our students, the teachers and administrators who came before us, and the legacy we would like to leave that shows our contribution to the excellence of our great school. It was a very emotional evening.”

Eighteen HS Students Honored for Exceptional Character

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Eighteen notable students at the high school were recognized by their teachers and school administrators on Nov. 9 at the annual fall Breakfast for Champions. Each fall and spring, student champions are chosen by each of the school’s departments, alongside principal’s and teacher’s champions, and are lauded by the educators and presented with plaques in front of their attending families. Deer Park’s string ensemble provided the music for the event, held in the school library.

The fall 2017 Breakfast for Champions honorees were Alexa Arbore (art), Kiera Blake (family and consumer science), Michael Catanzaro (performing arts), Melissa Fisk (technology), Lynne Gbadamosi (Principal’s Award), Brianna Huffstead (science), Mohamed Khan (health), Anthony Machuca (world languages), Daniela Paz Rodriguez (English as a new language), Vito Piazza (Teacher’s Award), Tarque Rahman (business), Ashley Ronquillo (guidance), Brayan Sanchez (math), Tabbatha Sanchez (English language arts), Alexa Skoubas (physical education), Yonis Velasquez Garcia (social studies) and James Wahl (athletics).

“These students have continually demonstrated exceptional character and conduct,” said Associate Principal Kristen Anisis. “They have overcome obstacles, shown outstanding effort in their classes, and have made significant contributions to our school.”  


Deer Park’s Dorney to Play Lax for Wagner

Deer Park’s Dorney to Play Lax for Wagner

High school senior athlete Kasey Dorney signed a national letter of intent on Nov. 28 to play lacrosse for Wagner College in Staten Island, where she will major in nursing. A lacrosse midfielder, Dorney earned All-County status in soccer and All-County Honorable Mention in lacrosse during her Deer Park sports career.

“I loved the coaches and the atmosphere,” said Dorney of her choice of Wagner.

Robert Frost Students Take on Bullying During Red Ribbon Week

Robert Frost Students Take on Bullying During Red Ribbon Week
Each day during Red Ribbon Week, red-clad students at Robert Frost heard Project Wisdom announcements related to the Red Ribbon initiative on bullying and substance abuse, and at lunchtime, were given the opportunity to sign a banner pledging to keep the school a bully-free zone. Additionally, Frost’s student council wrapped trees in front of the school with red ribbons.

PEAK Performers from JFK Explore Music Workshops

PEAK Performers from JFK Explore Music Workshops

Nine young musicians – Olivia Corrado, Milan Daniels, Dillon Jefferies, Kaylee Nguyen, Sophia Paduano, Olivia Russo, Jaidyn Schabe, Eve Valentine and Canaan Williams – from JFK were chosen to participate in the ninth annual Suffolk County Music Educators Association’s PEAK Festival, held at Northport High School.

PEAK (which stands for Parents, Educators and Kids), celebrates elementary classroom music and provides a unique experience where parents, educators and students can participate together. Talented fourth-grade students learn and experience music in addition to performing it, attending morning workshops in areas of music that may be new or different, including musical theater, recorder, chorus, world drumming, folk dance and even ukulele. 

“It was an amazing day filled with hands-on activities, ending with a performance for all families to enjoy,” said teacher Kristen Lombardo. “Congratulations to our students, and thank you to all of their parents for their support and enthusiasm.”




JFK Fourth-Graders Dress Up for Book Character Day

JFK Fourth-Graders Dress Up for Book Character Day

Keri Schumacher and Beth Ann Vahle’s fourth-grade classes at JFK ended a recent reading unit by holding a Book Character Day, where the students dressed up as their favorite characters from books such as “Pinkalicious” by Victoria Kann, “Slap Shots” by Gordan Korman, “The Kid Who Ran for President” by Dan Gutman. Schumacher and Vahle even got into the act, with the two teachers posing as the colorful Camilla Cream from David Shannon’s “A Bad Case of Stripes.”




Thanksgiving Comes Early for FACS Students

Thanksgiving Comes Early for FACS Students
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High school family and consumer science teacher Patricia Skjoldahl’s culinary arts students enjoyed an early Thanksgiving this year, prepping a full traditional Thanksgiving dinner with all the fixings. This holiday cooking curriculum was highlighted by a visit from Associate Principal Craig Evans who provided a demonstration on carving a turkey, including preparation, safety, presentation and skills. Afterwards, the students sat for their very own Deer Park FACS feast.

Deer Park School District