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Timber Point Kindergartners Celebrate Growth as Writers

Timber Point's Writing Celebration

Timber Point held a special kindergarten writing celebration on June 7, allowing proud visiting parents to experience the students’ burgeoning skills in expressing themselves via writing.

 “I am so proud of my kindergarten friends and how they have grown as writers throughout the school year,” said Principal Danielle Naccarato. “I know that this solid foundation and love for reading and writing will lead them to success in their bright futures.”    

Sciallo Signs with SUNY Morrisville

Sciallo Signs with SUNY Morrisville

Senior Erica Sciallo recently signed a national letter of intent to play field hockey this fall for SUNY Morrisville, where she will major in early education.

“I wanted to be part of their team, and Morrisville has a great education department,” said Sciallo of her choice.

Sciallo, who won the Coach’s Award in field hockey, is also a member of East Islip’ basketball and track teams as well as the Foreign Language Honor Society.




Elementary Art Spotlight

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In the final segment of our three-part video series, take a look at how our elementary students at Connetquot, JFK, RCK and Timber Point are learning and growing as artists. 

BOE Business Meeting on July 2

The Board of Education will hold its annual reorganization meeting on Tuesday, July 2 at 7 p.m.

All community members are invited to attend.

Press Conference on 100 Deadliest Days

Smashed Cars at HS Highlight 100 Deadliest Days

Partnering with Bang Towing, Gershow Recycling and Suffolk County legislators Tom Cilmi and Steven J. Flotteron, the high school’s Students Against Destructive Decisions club held a press conference about the “100 Deadliest Days” on June 12, with a massive display of smashed cars set up by Bang Towing in front of the school as the backdrop.

Teen auto crash rates rise dramatically during the 100 Deadliest Days, which last from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Led by SADD adviser Bridget Lopiccolo, the event brought awareness to the dangers of drinking/texting and driving, driving while impaired and distracted driving.

“The SADD Club is committed to educating students, staff and community that acts such as drinking and driving or texting and driving can not only affect your life but the lives of others,” said Lopiccolo. “We do not want to lose another student or community member to these preventable decisions.”



High School Holds Debut Art Honor Society Induction

High School Holds Debut Art Honor Society Induction

The high school held its first Art Honor Society induction ceremony on June 6 in the school’s library, with Jenna Donnelly recognized as the Service Award recipient for 2018-2019.

The 57 inductees included officers Robert Camlet, Nicholas Conzo, Lauren Florenz and Logan Witte as well as Alexis Barber, Rebecca Bast, Hanna Benardos, Sophie Bingham, Steven Brown, Alexandra Bunde, Robert Campanaro, Alessia Carcone, Hailey Cooke, Hailee Cornell, Kerri Davis, Julia Desiderio, Jenna Donnelly, Kaitlyn Donnelly, Daisy Ferrandino, Ashley Flyntz, Aidan Furey, Sabine Gebhard, David Gomez, Sarah Haanraadts, Mikayla Henderson, Grace Hurlbert, Alyssa Huss, Jolie Iamunno, Brandon Jinete, Kelli Karlin, Sarah Kern, Michael Kilbourne, Madeleine Lanberg, Nicholas LaRocca, Heather MacNamara, Kaylee Matos, Caroline Meehan, Jenna Moceri, Katryna Mullen, Kristy Murphy, Leah Neville, Hillary Ng, Judy Orellana, Emily Palomba, Sarah Piccinini, Emily Puglisi, Brian Quinn, Micarlys Ramirez, Kimberly Rauber, Brooke Rizzuto, Katelyn Spina, Joelle Tomossone, Thomas Tricoukes, Connor Tricoukes, Gianna Viviano, Samantha Winegard and Isilay Yildiz.

“Being a co-adviser for the NAHS with Heather Toomey this year has been amazing,” said Daniel Figliozzi. “We collaborate well and in turn have done some unique service projects with our students. Toomey organized a beautiful induction ceremony that I think our students and their parents really appreciated. I'm excited to see what else we can do with our talented NAHS members next year.”

“It was a beautiful ceremony and I am incredibly proud and honored to be the adviser to such a creative, dedicated and talented group of student-artists,” said adviser Heather Toomey. “They have given many hours of art service to the local and global community and uphold academic and artistic standards. I am so proud of our officers, scholarship recipients and all who supported our organization this year.”

EI’s 17 Student-Athletes Earn 21 Medals at Special Olympics

EI’s 17 Student-Athletes Earn 21 Medals at Special Olympics
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For the fourth consecutive year, the East Islip Redmen competed at the Special Olympics New York Spring Games North, held on May 11 at Bethpage High School. At the end of a spectacular day of competition, camaraderie and team spirit, the students brought home eight gold, eight silver and five bronze medals as well as six fourth-place ribbons, three fifth-place ribbons and three sixth-place ribbons.

“All the athletes were superstars and the EI team rocked the Special Olympics,” said Special Olympics coach and physical education teacher Diane Wahrenburg. “Thanks to all the volunteers, the EI administration and to the parents for all their support.”

East Islip started its first Special Olympics team in 2016, entering six athletes that year to compete in the Spring Games. Since the program’s inception, 27 students have participated. Coached by physical education teachers Laura O'Donnell and Julie Susskind, this year’s team grew to 17 participating student-athletes, including seven from the middle school (Jonathan Carberry, Rile Carrillo, Chloe Gagnon, Emily Kolensky, Jake Kozak, Janissa Llyod and Michael Pacheco), nine from the high school (Anthony Agresta, Danny DiOrios , Emily Maccarone, Julia Modico, Santiago Pacheco, Robert Phillips, Jake Pipitone, Sara Spruyt and Kelly Stubblebeen) and one returning EI graduate (Donald Ahlers).

“More important than the medals or ribbons is the day itself,” said middle school coach O'Donnell. “It’s a day the athletes, their families, coaches and volunteers come together and celebrate the true spirit with which the Special Olympics was founded: ‘Let me win, but if I can’t win, let me be brave in the attempt.’ Our athletes show their bravery from the first day of training to the moment they step out onto the track and field on the day of the Games. I couldn’t be prouder to be their coach.”

“We are excited about how the program is growing and look forward to continuing to offer more training and competition opportunities to our student-athletes,” said high school coach Susskind. “With more people coming on board and the growing support of the community and the administration, it would not be surprising for us to host in the near future. It’s a great experience for the kids and something I personally look forward to every year.”

“Not only has our student-athlete numbers increased, but so has the number of volunteers,” said O’Donnell. “This year, we had 22 volunteers supporting our athletes on the field at the Games, several of them returning for the second or third time.”

The team members and their families enjoyed an annual pregame breakfast on May 9 in the middle school cafeteria, also attended by district administrators and volunteers, and the students were recognized at the Board of Education’s May business meeting.





Cheerleading Scholarship for Kaczynski

Kaczynski Earns Cheerleading Scholarship
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Senior Danielle Kaczynski will join the cheerleading team at LIU Post this fall. She is the first East Islip student to earn a cheerleading scholarship.

Kaczynski, who plans to major in business and minor in fashion merchandising, has been involved with cheerleading since age 4, starring as a member of All Star Cheerleading, coaching younger athletes, serving as junior varsity captain at East Islip and performing on the varsity team for the last two years.


Legislation Removing Non-Medical Exemption from School Vaccination Requirements

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JFK's Lemke Wins Science Fair Award

JFK's Lemke Wins Science Fair Award
William Lemke, a fourth grader at JFK, won an “Honorable Mention” award at the Brookhaven National Laboratory Elementary Science Fair Competition, held on May 4. Lemke’s project was titled “Reducing Boat Barnacles.”

Senior Awards Night 2019

Senior Awards Night 2019

More than 100 scholarships and awards were awarded to 151 members of the Class of 2019 at the high school’s annual Senior Awards Night on June 4, many sponsored by generous local organizations and community members.

“There were many applications received and it was very difficult to select the winners,” said Guidance Director Israel Malinowitzer, the host of the ceremony. “These students were absolutely amazing and were involved throughout their high school years in afterschool activities, sports and community service. They are all ready to begin their next adventure in life.”




Board of Ed Honors Val and Sal

Board of Ed Honors Val and Sal
During its June 13 business meeting, the Board of Education and Superintendent John Dolan honored the high school’s 2019 valedictorian and salutatorian, Victoria Keenan and James Smalley. The two students were praised by Principal Mark Bernard, who detailed their many accomplishments and noted that they were role models for their school.

Letter to Community/Staff Re: Opioids

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Timber Point Kindergartners Enjoy Teddy Bear Clinic

Timber Point Kindergartners Enjoy Teddy Bear Clinic
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 Kindergartners at Timber Point recently brought in their beloved stuffed animals to participate in the school’s annual Teddy Bear Clinic, sponsored by Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center. Good Samaritan’s Trauma and Child Life departments – represented by pediatric trauma coordinator Cathy Wirtenson, child life specialist Nancy Kennedy and staff assistant Lauren Buckley – worked together to present the interactive half-hour clinic, which covers car and helmet safety and gives the students a chance to dress up as doctors and nurses and take care of their injured toys.

Redmen Golf Outing on July 11

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Valedictorian Victoria Keenan

Valedictorian Victoria Keenan
The high school’s Class of 2019 valedictorian is Victoria Keenan. Keenan, who finished with a weighted GPA of 108.20, is an accomplished musician, earning All-Eastern and All-State honors. An AP Scholar with Honor, she serves as president of the Tri-M Music Honor Society and secretary of the National Honor Society and is a member of the World Language Honor Society, Metropolitan Youth Orchestra of New York and the East Islip High School newspaper staff. Keenan will study music education at Ithaca College School of Music.

Salutatorian James Smalley

Salutatorian James Smalley
The high school’s Class of 2019 salutatorian is James Smalley. A National Merit Scholarship Program finalist and AP Scholar with Distinction, he earned a GPA of 108.18. He serves as captain of the varsity boys track team and is a member of the National Honor Society, Science Honor Society, varsity boys soccer team and the Exchange Ambulance of the Islips. Smalley will attend Northeastern University, majoring in chemical engineering.


Chamber of Commerce Selects Six as May Students of the Month

Chamber of Commerce Selects Six as May Students of the Month

The East Islip Chamber of Commerce honored six impressive pupils – Connetquot first graders Zoey Hart and Luke Rochford and high school seniors Aidan Furey, Timothy Meier, Maggie Ruland and Krista Zinkiewicz – as May Students of the Month. The students were selected for their outstanding community service and participation in school activities.




Summer Practice for Fall Athletic Try-Outs

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A Successful Spring Concert Series

A Successful Spring Concert Series
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A Successful Spring Concert Series 3

Another superlative season of music study came to a close in East Islip, as the district’s spring concert series presented the fruits of a school year filled with student talent and tenacity. The well-attended performances included three middle school concerts on May 8, 13 and 14; high school concerts on May 20 and 22; and in-school and evening concerts at JFK and RCK on May 22 and 15, respectively.

“Our spring concert series extended from our third grade students performing on their recorders and singing, to our seniors performing at their high school for the last time,” said Dr. Robert J. Wottawa II, the district’s director of art, ENL, music and world languages. “Our music program is supported by so many, and our students’ hard work throughout this series was evident. All of our students’ success is directly related to the impact that each of our teachers has on our students and program.  I am most proud of all that participate and share the magic of music with our world.”

  

 

 

 




EI Partners with Stony Brook for Language College Credits

EI Partners with Stony Brook for Language College Credits
East Islip has partnered with Stony Brook University’s ACE program to provide the high school’s world language students with college credits. Beginning in fall 2019, high schoolers enrolled in level 4 or 5 French, Italian and Spanish courses may be eligible to earn up to eight credits from Stony Brook.

Led by Dr. Robert J. Wottawa II, the district’s director of art, ENL, music and world languages, East Islip began working through the rigorous approval process last September with three ACE program facilitators, Spanish professor Dr. Lilia Ruiz-Debbie and French and Italian professors Dr. Irene Marchegiani and Dr. Madeline Turan.

“We are excited to begin this partnership with Stony Brook as well as the professional development opportunities they will provide our world language teachers,” said Wottawa. “Stony Brook is nationally recognized and the earned credits are more transferable to other universities. This allows our high school students to earn the required language credits for many degrees or earn college credits that can be used toward their college graduation.”

James Connell Earns Teacher of Excellence Award

James Connell Earns Teacher of Excellence Award

High school technology educator James Connell was honored at the fourth annual Teacher of Excellence Awards ceremony on May 9, hosted by State Sen. Phil Boyle. Connell was congratulated at the event by his family and Principal Mark Bernard.




Top 10 Seniors Recognized

Top 10 Seniors Recognized

The high school recently held a celebratory breakfast to honor the school’s top 10 academic seniors. Valedictorian Victoria Keenan and salutatorian James Smalley were joined in this exceptional group of scholars by Kristen Bayreuther, Trevor Garnett, Shannon Hubany, Joshua Koretz, Madison Lane, Erin Meagher, Stephanie Milito and Isabella Pasha.

“These students have worked extra hard over the last four years, and we are recognizing them for excellence both in academics, sports and artistic ability,” said Guidance Director Israel Malinowitzer.

Two Named National Merit Finalists

Two Named National Merit Finalists
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Two Named National Merit Finalists 3
Seniors Joshua Koretz and James Smalley were named National Merit Finalists in the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program. Both accomplished scholars were honored by the district and Board of Education at recent business meetings.   

Eighth Grade Trio Earn Math Award

Eighth Grade Trio Earn Math Award

The middle school Math League’s eighth grade team of Rachel Furey, David Serino, and Marisa Triolo were recently recognized at the Suffolk County Math Teachers’ Association Math Awards dinner for achieving the highest score in their division. Throughout the year, students compete in math competitions against other schools in the area.

“We are very proud of their hard work and dedication to math and Math League all year long,” said teacher Alyssa Tripi. “They are an outstanding group of students, and we look forward to seeing their future accolades.


High School Sends 10 to 12x12

High School Sends 10 to 12x12

High school students Rebecca Bast, Jenna Bosco, Danielle Catanzarite, Brandon Jinete, Michael Kilbourne, Rachel Kuhlman, Leah Neville, Judy Orellana, Alyssa Orlando and Kerri Smith were recently selected for the 16th annual 12x12 High School Art Exhibition, sponsored by LIU Post. The show debuted on May 3 at Post’s Student Art League Gallery, culminating in a reception on May 15. For this competition, student-artists were required to create works that are 12 inches wide by 12 inches high.

“I love art and I am continuing on next year in Advanced Placement Studio Art, so it was an honor to be chosen for this show,” said Kilbourne.

“It’s such a wonderful opportunity that LIU Post offers in exhibiting Long Island high school artists,” said teacher Heather Toomey. “I am so proud of these wonderful photography and electronic illustration students.”




Memorial Day Message and Challenge

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Milito's "Breathe" Chosen for Film Fest

Milito's  ‘Breathe’ Chosen for Film Fest
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After winning “Best in Show” at the 2019 Long Island Media Arts Show at Five Towns College, East Islip High School student Stephanie Milito’s short film “Breathe” was selected for the 13th annual First Exposure Film Festival, held on May 19 at the Cinema Art Centre in Huntington. Milito’s film, which deals with acute anxiety disorder, was shown in the theater at the event, and she was presented with a certificate of recognition by Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone.  





Lady Redmen Finish Seventh Overall in Counties

Lady Redmen Finish Seventh Overall in Counties
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The high school’s varsity girls golf team, coached by Judith Fischer, competed in the Suffolk County competition on May 20-21 at Middle Island Country Club, finishing seventh overall. Two golfers, captain Sofia Ferrezza and Sophia Stryjewski, made the initial cut to return to compete on the second day as individuals for an All-State spot. In a field of 103 golfers, Stryjewski finished 13th, six strokes off the All-State mark; Ferrezza finished in 19th, 12 strokes off the cut.


Memorial Day Weekend Message

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Manners Matter

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JFK Fifth Grader Wins Knights of Columbus Hoops Contest

JFK Fifth Grader Wins Knights of Columbus Hoops Contest
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Tim Coakley, a fifth grader at JFK, was recognized at the district’s May 9 Board of Education business meeting for his achievement in winning the Knights of Columbus New York State Council’s 2019 basketball free throw contest. Coakley, who was named 11-year-old boys division state champion at the West Point event, was congratulated at the board meeting by Superintendent John Dolan and Board of Education President Christopher Zachry.

MS Shows Ride for Life Support

MS Shows Ride for Life Support

Supported by a crowd of cheering, poster-waving students, Chris Pendergast came to the middle school on May 8 as part of his 22nd annual Ride for Life event. Pendergast, a former elementary school teacher and ALS patient, has spent the last two decades dedicating his life to raise money to help find a cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

Pendergast previously helped the school’s National Junior Honor Society and Leaders Club kick off their respective fundraising efforts with a March 13 assembly for eighth graders. Members of these clubs then sold baseballs as a competition between grades for a night of no homework, and social studies teacher Melissa Henderson presented Pendergast and his foundation with a $1,000 check at the Ride for Life.




Budget Passes!

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The East Islip School District's 2019-2020 budget passed on May 21 by a vote of 1,292 yes votes to 800 no votes. The district thanks the community for their participation and support.

Voters also approved the ballot proposition for a repair reserve fund by a total of 1,227 yes votes to 837 no votes.

For the district's five-person Board of Education, voters elected Christopher R. Nicolia (1,068 votes) over Charles P. Kalinowski (850 votes). The two candidates were running for the open seat currently held by Steven Behan, who did not run for reelection.

Memorable ‘Memory’ Experience for Art Honor Society

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A group of 20 students in the high school’s National Art Honor Society recently participated in the Memory Project, an initiative which invites art teachers and their students to create portraits for youth around the world who have faced substantial challenges, such as neglect, abuse, loss of parents and extreme poverty.

The East Islip students – Alexis Barber, Sophie Bingham, Steven Brown, Lauren Florenz, Mikayla Henderson, Alyssa Huss, Brandon Jinete, Kelli Karlin, Sarah Kern, Michael Kilbourne, Madeleine Lanberg, Kaylee Matos, Jenna Moceri, Katryna Mullen, Leah Neville, Hillary Ng, Katie Spina, Joelle Tomossone, Samantha Winegard and Logan Witte – were given photographs of children from Peru and then created portraits of those children using media of their choice, including pencil, watercolor, charcoal, colored pencils or digitally rendered portraits. 

“The Memory Project is such an amazing organization and really is a perfect fit for our National Art Honor Society to showcase their talents and help youth around the world who face a number of challenges,” said teacher Heather Toomey, who served as the project’s co-adviser along with Daniel Figiozzi. “I am proud of all the artists that participated in creating beautiful portraits of these 20 young children from Peru.”

“It was a true honor being able to give this wonderful gift to these children,” said Bingham. “I think it is wonderful that we get to put a smile on these children's faces.”

“It was an experience I will always remember,” said student Mullen. “I hope the child I drew enjoys it as much as I enjoyed drawing her. I am happy she gets to keep it. It was a nice experience to participate in something that gives back to people.”

“As president of the NAHS, I am very involved in all the service projects being done,” said Florenz. “I think the Memory Project was such an amazing activity and an honor for all the students to participate in. Being able to create art for kids in other countries is a really great concept because although there may be a language barrier, it’s cool how the art can bring us all together, and I think everyone in the Society was really appreciative of the opportunity.”




Career Tech Programs Get a Boost from Lincoln Test Drives

 Career Tech Programs Get a Boost from Lincoln Test Drives

In support of the high school’s career technology programs, Bright Bay Lincoln hosted a Lincoln “Driven to Give” fundraiser on May 11 at the Early Childhood Center parking lot. Student drivers, staff and community members were invited to test drive a brand-new Lincoln automobile, with $20 donated by the auto maker to the high school's CTE programs for every test drive.

Girls Golfers Finish Second in League

Girls Golfers Finish Second in League

The high school’s varsity girls golf team, coached by Judith Fischer and captained by junior Sofia Ferrezza, finished the season with a terrific 8-2 record, earning them second place in League III and the fifth best record in the county. The team is busy preparing for the county competition, to be held on May 20-21 at Middle Island Country Club.



High Schoolers Take Trip of a Lifetime to Costa Rica

High Schoolers Take Trip of a Lifetime to Costa Rica

A trip of a lifetime became a reality recently for 29 high school students, who were given the opportunity to travel to Costa Rica accompanied by the school’s world language teachers.

The tour kicked off in the nation’s capital city of San José, where students visited the charming Sarchí village, an old artisan town in the Alajuela Province known for its oxcarts with handpainted wheels. The tour continued with a visit to Arenal Volcano National Park, where the high schoolers were able to hike on rainforest trails and observe wildlife and plant species. The hike also provided access to a closer view of the active volcano itself. The next day, the students went on a kayak excursion on Arenal Lake, followed by another hike to experience hanging bridges, where they saw wild boar, snakes, birds and monkeys. The day ended with a dip in a natural hot spring heated by the volcano.

The students next visited a local elementary school in the town of Monteverde, where they donated items that they brought from home – such as Frisbees, soccer balls, footballs, notebooks, markers, pens and pencils – and observed an actual English lesson. After learning about reforestation, the traveling students planted their own trees to support the land and provide homes for native animals. They also went hiking and ziplining in the cloud forest of Monteverde, and took a horseback ride in the mountains surrounding the forest.

The last segment of the trip was spent along the Pacific coastline, including surfing lessons and a visit to Manuel Antonio National Park, where the students spent the afternoon swimming, relaxing and encountering sloths and friendly spider monkeys. The final night of their Costa Rican adventure was spent back in San José, concluding with a farewell dinner that featured a dance celebration and folklore show. 

“Our students agree that this was a trip of a lifetime, one that they will never forget,” said Spanish teacher Betty Muller. “They were able to appreciate the love that Costa Ricans have for their country. One cannot understand how beautiful this country is and why its people are so happy unless you visit it.”




FTK Honors Frisina, Lopiccolo and Cilmi at 22nd Annual Gala

FTK Honors Frisina, Lopiccolo and Cilmi at 22nd annual Gala

The For the Kids Foundation held its 22nd annual Gala, themed “Sunset on the Bay,” on April 6 at Land's End in Sayville. For this year’s event, replete with the traditional raffles and fine dining, the honorees were Timber Point teacher Teresa Frisina and high school teacher Bridget Lopiccolo, both recognized as Educator Advocates of the Year, and Suffolk County Legislator Tom Cilmi, recognized as Community Advocate of the Year.

The Gala serves as FTK’s primary fundraising event. Since its formation, the organization has donated well over $1 million for educational programs and resources to benefit East Islip’s students.





Budget and Bond Work Message

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Four from EIHS Recite at Italian Poetry Contest

Four from EIHS Recite at Italian Poetry Contest
Four diligent Italian level 2 and 3 students from East Islip High School – Anthony Rossano, Emma Sasso, Anna Stauber and Gerson Tamayo – competed against more than 300 other students from across Nassau and Suffolk in the 34th annual American Association of Teachers of Italian Long Island Poetry Contest, held on April 12 at SUNY Old Westbury on April 12. It was East Islip’s first time competing in this event. The students were asked to memorize an Italian poem of 12-30 lines and recite it in front of a panel of judges.

Learning About Lighting with Lennon

Learning About Lighting with Lennon

Photography classes at the high school recently participated in a lighting workshop with local photographer John Lennon. The students explored the properties of hard and soft light and how color and lighting can change mood in portraiture as well as still life photographs.

“John has volunteered his time and expertise on numerous occasions to the photography students of East Islip,” said art teacher Heather Toomey. “They always enjoy and learn so much from his knowledge.”   

“It was a wonderful experience to learn how to put lighting on someone’s face so they look good,” said Sabine Gebhard.

“Mr. Lennon was a great teacher and I learned so much about a subject that I wanted to explore,” said Jenna Donnelly.

“It’s always an exciting day when John Lennon visits our classes,” said art teacher Joy Taylor. “Getting to work alongside a professional photographer and use his high-end equipment is a great experience for the students. His advice about hard and soft lighting and the effects it has on portraits was really inspiring.”




Running Robotics the Right Way

Running Robotics the Right Way

Working in small groups of five or six, high school students enrolled in robotics courses recently conducted a multi-day in-house tournament utilizing robots which the students designed and built themselves from scratch.

After several months in robotics class, students within the course designed and created competition robots to play this year’s VEX EDR game Turning Point. The high schoolers were tasked with creating designs that were robust enough to withstand the competition and also capable of maximizing points within the game.

During the tournament, each team had the opportunity to play with and against all of the other robots in their class, culminating in the crowning of four class champions: Period 1, Robot No. 1 (designed by Hannah Bohlsen, Sophia Cicale, Chelsea Dodenhoff, and Sebastian Gebhard); Period 3, Robot No. 7 (designed by Joe Canas, William Carpluk, Aiden Lopera, Mitchell Meyers and Jason Stein); Period 5, Robot No. 10 (designed by Gabe Abruzo, Mike Baldino, Brendan Hughes and Nathan Willdigg); and Period 8, Robot No. 16 (designed by Sophia Bates, Anthony Carroll, Allison Farino, Arthur Martin and Steve Stassi).

The four class champion robots were then entered into a one-day mini tournament competing with and against each other. Each class had the chance to drive and compete with the class champion robots, providing a true test of the engineering prowess of the designs. In the end, Period 3, Robot No. 7 was crowned as tournament champion.

In addition to the class champion and tournament champion awards, alternate awards were given out in an effort to celebrate students for their group work as well as their individual efforts in helping out their teams.

Top Engineer awards were given to Kristen Bayreuther, Jacob DiPrima-Bien, Joe Fragala, Cody Knott and Brian Quinn in recognition of superior engineering skills and helping lead their robotics team.

Recognized as Team Award winners for the most professional design approach were Joe Bucci, Emre Destek, William Lopez-Riano, Neel Patel and Jordan Quillan for Period 5, Robot No. 11.

In recognition of designing and creating the most technologically advanced robot, Bayreuther, Anthony DiSanto, Brandon Gans, Tyler Herzog and Nick Illare won the Judges Award for Period 3, Robot No. 6.

“When I was asked to bring robotics back to the high school, I thought back to when I was involved in East Islip’s FIRST robotics program back in the early 2000s,” said technology teacher James Connell. “The program was excellent and at one point in time, nationally ranked. I always wanted to bring it back to East Islip and jumped at the opportunity when it was presented to me. Unlike FIRST robotics, which was an afterschool program where students designed and created only one robot that was shared by more than 50 students, I wanted to provide students with a more intimate and in-depth experience. Our current setup of running robotics as a course offered within the technology education department not only provides students with the option to do robotics during the day, but it also offers them the opportunity to work in smaller group sessions where they can take more ownership in their learning.”




Girls Lax Teams Volunteer for Autism Fundraiser

Girls Lax Teams Volunteer for Autism Fundraiser

Student volunteers from the high school’s girls varsity and JV lacrosse teams ran a water station during the EJ Autism Foundation’s 13th annual four-mile Jigsaw Run/Walk for Autism in April. Proceeds from the event will support programs on Long Island that work with children diagnosed with autism.

Redmen Teams Hold 'Lax Out Cancer' Event

 Redmen Teams Hold 'Lax Out Cancer' Event

The high school’s boys and girls varsity lacrosse teams joined forces on April 29 to organize a special “Lax Out Cancer” event, selling shirts and raising more than $1,000 to benefit the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. The project was spearheaded by senior girls player Melissa Sconone.







Montijo and Shaw Selected for Colors of LI

Montijo and Shaw Selected for Colors of LI
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Montijo and Shaw Selected for Colors of LI 3

High school students Jessica Montijo and Cammi Shaw were recently selected to have their work showcased in the 21st annual Colors of Long Island student art exhibit at Stony Brook’s Long Island Museum.

Montijo is currently enrolled in Daniel Figliozzi’s Advanced Placement Studio Art class.

“The triptych that Jess contributed to Colors of Long Island beautifully captures Long Island’s wildlife and landscape,” said Figliozzi. “She is an amazing photographer and designer and is one of the most hardworking students I've ever worked with.”

“It was a great honor to have my photo displayed with amazing artwork from students across Long Island,” said Shaw. “I love being out in nature and capturing its beauty with my camera.”

“It’s such an amazing opportunity to have these two wonderful student-artists showcased at a professional museum,” said teacher Heather Toomey. “I am so proud of Cammi and Jessica. They are wonderful artists and deserve the honor of being exhibited at the Long Island Museum.”


JFK Celebrates Earth Day 2019

JFK Celebrates Earth Day 2019

In celebration of Earth Day 2019, JFK students, staff and community members gathered on April 18 to walk around the school fields. Each class made colorful and creative banners to foster awareness about the importance of respecting the earth and appreciating the environment.

Six fifth grade students – Emma Blandino, Emilia Cicale, Kylie Dickson, Aidan Godbout, Hanna Nilsen and Olivia Primiano – read their original poetry, which highlighted the responsibility to reduce, recycle and reuse, and the entire school performed a song directed by music teacher James Santoro. 

“Earth Day was first celebrated on April 22, 1970 to recognize clean air, land and water,” said Principal Deborah Smith. “Every year, we take time to appreciate all that we have and the beautiful nature around us. It is also vital that we accept our obligation to conserve and protect our planet for generations to come.”



Mock Trial Team Makes Semifinals at Law Day Event

Mock Trial Team Makes Semifinals at Law Day Event
Mock Trial Team Makes Semifinals at Law Day Event 2
Mock Trial Team Makes Semifinals at Law Day Event 3

The high school’s Mock Trial team finished as semifinalists in the annual Long Island Law Day tournament held at Northport High School. It was the fifth consecutive year that East Islip has brought home an award from this event.  East Islip was represented by freshmen Emily Blair and Grace Gerondel, sophomores Jacob Arens, Justin Martinez; Vince Papillo, Kaitlyn Rice and Kim Turtell; and senior Ashley Malcolm.

During the tournament, sponsored by Project PATCH and Touro Law Center, 16 teams from Nassau and Suffolk counties competed in one-on-one mini trials. For each round, students were given a one-page fact pattern and had 12 minutes to prepare to present an entire legal case, including opening and closing statements and witness examinations. East Islip competed in five rounds of trials, finally falling to Massapequa in the semis. 

“Long Island Law Day is an excellent way to exhibit student learning, because coaches may not help the students during the 12-minute reading and prep time or during the trial itself,” said coach Patsy Lester. “Team members must work together quickly and cooperatively to apply their knowledge of the law to the facts and make a convincing presentation to the judges. The outcome was particularly impressive since most of our students were underclassmen. I’m proud of the hard work the team put in. They totally trust and support one another and deserved this success.”

Meier Accepted to Naval Academy

Meyer Accepted to Naval Academy

High school senior Timothy Meier was recently accepted to attend the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland this fall. The future Navy man, whose eventual career goal is mechanical engineering, went through a challenging application process, including obtaining recommendations from Congressman Pete King and Sen. Charles Schumer.

“My brother is in the Navy, where he went through medical school, so that got me interested,” said Meier. “I’ve been thinking about the Navy since middle school, and ever since then, it evolved into going to the Naval Academy.”




EI Earns 17 "Best in Show" Awards at LI Media Arts

EI Earns 18

A superb 17 of the high school’s students recently won “Best in Show” awards at the annual Long Island Media Arts Show at Five Towns College, including 15 art students (Niamh Amitrao, Max Calarco, Robert Camlet, Bella Carlozzi, Hailey Cooke, Julia Desiderio, Jenna Donnelly, Sabine Gebhard, Emma Jakits, Jake Kenny, Michael Laird, Anna Langman, Jessica Montijo, Leah Neville and Kerry Smith) and three video production and broadcast television students (Andrew Johnson and Stephanie Milito).

“This was my second year in a row receiving a ‘Best in Show’ award and it was such a valuable experience,” said Donnelly.

“It was a fun time and I learned a lot from the experience,” said Cooke.

“It was an honor to receive ‘Best in Show’ award for my photography,” said Smith.

“This year’s show was another great experience for the students,” said teacher Joy Taylor. “Presenting work for evaluation by professionals in the field can be daunting, and these students have both talent and courage. Congratulations to all of them!”

“I am so proud of all of the students that received ‘Best in Show’ awards,” said teacher Heather Toomey. “We even had students win more than one for their outstanding work in photography and computer graphics. These students had some of the strongest work at the show, and this event is such a wonderful opportunity and experience for them to get critiqued by professionals.”

Videos by East Islip students entered in the contest included “Costa Rica Vacation” by Chris Alessi, “Daydream” by Nick Conzo and “Dystopia” by Jenna Donnelly. The two “Best in Show” winners, the acute anxiety disorder film “Breathe” by Milito and social media horror short “Double Check” by Johnson. Were submitted to the First Exposure Film Festival and Milito’s video will be shown at the Cinema Arts Centre in Huntington in May.

“It was so rewarding being able to have all my work pay off by being awarded best in show,” said Johnson.

“Being able to showcase my work at Five Towns College was such a fun experience,” said Milito. “I’m thankful for being given the opportunity to portray such emotions over film.”

“Every year I am always very impressed by the quality of the videos our students produce for the Media Arts show,” said teacher James Connell. “A tremendous amount of hard work goes in to the planning, filming and editing of the videos, and it is done at a very high quality.”





HS Students Catch "My Fair Lady"

HS Students Catch

High school juniors and seniors visited the Vivian Beaumont Theater at Lincoln Center on April 3 to watch Lerner and Loewe’s classic musical production of “My Fair Lady,” featuring Tony-award winners Laura Benanti and Danny Burstein. The students also enjoyed seeing such famous New York City landmarks as the Lincoln Center fountain, the Metropolitan Opera House and the Julliard School of Music.

“Most of our students were familiar with the storyline since ‘Pygmalion,’ the George Bernard Shaw play which is the source material for the musical, is taught in ninth grade,” said English teacher Linda Leach. “It was exciting to realize that a key role, Mrs. Higgins, was played by Rosemary Harris, a 92-year-old Tony-award winning actress who performed with many distinguished actors including Richard Burton, Laurence Olivier and Peter O’Toole.”


Ruland Wins Allstate Activist Award

Ruland Wins Allstate Activist Award
High school student Maggie Ruland recently won the Allstate Safe Driving Activist Award at the Suffolk County High School Principals Association 2019 scholarship awards luncheon. She was congratulated by Principal Mark Bernard.

2019 Redmen Golf Outing

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Wednesday, June 26, 2019