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Summer Activities

Summer Activities
Click here for information on Summer Camps, Reading, Summer School and Back-to-School Supplies

Science Students and Teacher Recognized at Barcode Long Island Symposium

Science Students and Teacher Recognized at Barcode Long Island Symposium
Science Students and Teacher Recognized at Barcode Long Island Symposium 2

High school students in the biotechnology research class and two seniors from the advanced research class presented their findings at the Barcode Long Island symposium, held at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory on June 4.

Students presented their work to scientists as a culmination of their participation in the Barcode Long Island program, in which high school students and teachers gain an understanding of the crucial interdependence between humans and the natural environment. Funded by a Science Education Partnership Award through the National Institutes of Health, the program is a collaborative effort among Stony Brook University, Brookhaven National Laboratory, the American Museum of Natural History and the Cold Spring Harbor DNA Learning Center.

Throughout the school year, students worked on projects to uncover the biodiversity of spiders, zooplankton and algae in the local environment. The organisms that students identified through the DNA barcoding process will be published in a publicly available specimen database. The senior research students participated in the Barcode Long Island program as sophomores, and this year were afforded the opportunity to pilot a new technique. Chris Hueber and Kyle Nelson conducted an eDNA experiment. They collected and filtered water from various locations in the Great South Bay, then extracted DNA from cellular material that is left behind by organisms as they interact with the environment. This new technique uses next generation DNA sequencing and powerful computing programs to analyze a large volume of DNA sequences collected from the environment. At the symposium, Hueber and Nelson shared their initial findings with Dr. Bruce Nash, the assistant director for science at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory’s DNA Learning Center, who gave them advice for continuing data analysis.

During the symposium, West Islip science teacher Mary Kroll received an award recognizing her efforts as “Outstanding Mentor” for the 2018-2019 school year. Kroll was chosen from among the 25 teachers who participated in Barcode Long Island, who collectively mentored over 200 research students across Long Island. To be eligible to serve as a mentor, teachers received training and attended myriad related workshops to advance their own learning. 

The Littlest Lions Graduate

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West Islip’s littlest Lions graduated preschool on May 23, the culmination of a year in the Little Lions preschool program, run at the high school in conjunction with the Early Childhood Education program. High school students enrolled in the program act as student-teachers for the preschoolers. This year, over 40 high school students participated, some of whom started their education in the Little Lions preschool themselves. Many of the seniors who completed the program and graduated in June plan to pursue education as a major in college this fall. 

“For me, the best part of the program is watching the development of both the preschool and high school students and seeing the impact they have on each other,” said teacher Nancy Silvestrini, the program’s coordinator. “It always amazes me how much they learn from each other and the experience that stays with them for years to come. Much luck and success to the 2019 graduating preschoolers and student-teachers.”



The Littlest Lions Graduate

The Littlest Lions Graduate
The Littlest Lions Graduate 2

West Islip’s littlest Lions graduated preschool on May 23, the culmination of a year in the Little Lions preschool program, run at the high school in conjunction with the Early Childhood Education program. High school students enrolled in the program act as student-teachers for the preschoolers. This year, over 40 high school students participated, some of whom started their education in the Little Lions preschool themselves. Many of the seniors who completed the program and graduated in June plan to pursue education as a major in college this fall. 

“For me, the best part of the program is watching the development of both the preschool and high school students and seeing the impact they have on each other,” said teacher Nancy Silvestrini, the program’s coordinator. “It always amazes me how much they learn from each other and the experience that stays with them for years to come. Much luck and success to the 2019 graduating preschoolers and student-teachers.”



Board of Education Public Notices

Click on the links below for Board of Education Public Notices

 

Special Meeting to be held July 23rd.


Revised schedule for the Finance and Buildings & Grounds meetings.

 

Program Site Change for Summer Investigations Program

Summer Investigations
Monday, July 8th - Thursday, August 1st

Location - Paul J. Bellew
8:30 - 10:30 a.m.
*Program site change

Chromebook Forms Available for Incoming 6th Graders

Click here to download the required Chromebook form

Pride of Senior Lions Celebrated at Commencement

Pride of Senior Lions Celebrated at Commencement
Pride of Senior Lions Celebrated at Commencement 2

Beneath sunny skies, the 362 graduating seniors of the high school’s Class of 2019 marched onto the Lions football field on the morning of June 29, ready to celebrate their commencement with pride and a shared sense of accomplishment as they walked through the gazebo to the strains of “Pomp and Circumstance” played by the school’s graduation ensemble, directed by James Krais.

As family and friends looked on, members of the American Legion Post No. 1738 presented the colors. Student Senate president Catherine Fregosi led the salute to the flag, followed by the “The Star-Spangled Banner,” performed by National School Choral Award winner Lauren Leonardi.

“Let it be said that you are leaving this high school a better place, due to your forceful ideas and meaningful contributions,” said Dr. Anthony Bridgeman, the school’s principal, in his welcoming address.

“Today I am proud to announce that as high school graduates, we have spent a total of approximately 338,400 minutes in West Islip High School,” valedictorian Madison Esposito noted in her address focused on the concept and perception of time. “Don’t let time pass you by blindly,” she told her classmates in conclusion. “Take charge of the memories that you create.”

Using the school’s mascot for an overarching theme, salutatorian Douglas Dillman said, “Let me tell you about our jungle, where the Lion is king of all. At first sight it was vast and overwhelming, but the jungle became our habitat, a second home for us all. Once fearful, we now lead by example. In crowded classrooms, under bright stage lights, on sweltering sports fields, we have demonstrated the way a Lion moves – with courage and diligence. I choose to refer to us as one fierce Lion pride.”

“Class of 2019, you leave high school in particularly interesting times,” Superintendent Bernadette Burns said. “Yet despite the challenges and hardships, these are exciting times to be heading off to college or a career or both. Today you meet on this field to say goodbye to West Islip High School, but you begin a very new and personal journey.”

Board of Education President Steven Gellar highlighted the seniors’ accomplishment and told them, “From the first day of kindergarten until the last day of high school, you have shown talent, determination and character. I have every confidence that you will continue to exemplify those traits and make us proud by doing great things.”

Diplomas were presented, the colors retired, tassels turned and caps thrown high into the air before the new graduates walked out to the sound of the alma mater recessional, ready to celebrate their terrific achievement with the families.


Ingenious Science Showcase at Oquenock

 Ingenious Science Showcase at Oquenock

A recent science show at Oquenock highlighted students’ knowledge and ingenuity, including projects about geodes, volcanoes, turtles, hydroponics, the solar system, added sugar in foods, and the two differing sides of the human brain.






West Islip Celebrates 21 Successful Seniors at IB Diploma Ceremony

West Islip Celebrates 21 Successful Seniors at IB Diploma Ceremony

The high school held its International Baccalaureate diploma ceremony on May 21, celebrating the 21 graduating seniors who completed their IB diploma requirements. The students displayed their Creativity/Action/Service projects as well as their extended essays of research. This year’s honorary IB awards were presented to IB director Jim Gilmartin, Philip Kane and Nancy Yost.

“The IB/CAS program is rewarding and meant to provide our students with the opportunity for continued growth in their current and future endeavors,” said adviser Virginia Scudder. “Their success is seen through their desire to achieve the very best of themselves

“The program is a testament to the amazing West Islip faculty that helps bring the classes to life,” said the school’s principal, Dr. Anthony Bridgeman, who extolled the virtues of IB’s rigor and value in creating lifelong learners.


Free Summer Meals Program Available

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Click on image for more information

Free Summer Meals

HS Track Trio Earn All-County Honors

HS Track Trio Earn All-County Honors
High school athletes Kimberly Arena, Andrew Paules and Isabella Rogler recently earned All-County honors at the Suffolk County track and field championships. Arena broke her own school record and cleared 10 feet, 6 inches in the pole vault, Paules ran a 10:07.15 in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, and Rogler was county champion in the 1,500 race walk with an impressive time of 6:57.

“Congratulations to the track All-County performers and coaches Mike DiStefano, Nick Grieco, Jeremy Robertson and John Lavery on these impressive accomplishments,” said Athletic Director Tim Horan.

Thirst Project Celebrates Third Annual Gala

Thirst Project Celebrates Third Annual Gala
Thirst Project Celebrates Third Annual Gala 2
Thirst Project Celebrates Third Annual Gala 3
West Islip High School’s Thirst Project hosted its third annual Gala at Captain Bill’s in Bay Shore on May 30, celebrating the hard work and dedication of club members and highlighting the impact they have made this year. The event raised over $5,000 towards the Thirst Project’s next fresh water well in the African nation of Eswatini.

The Gala featured raffles, silent auctions and a presentation by Evan Wesley, the vice president of student activation at Thirst Project in Los Angeles. Club members and their families enjoyed an evening of dancing with DJ Brandon Latargia, a West Islip alumnus. At least one former Thirst Club president from each year since 2012 attended the event in support of the club, impressing the school’s principal, Dr. Anthony Bridgeman.

“West Islip’s legacy is unmatched and the dedication of its students is inspiring to all,” said Wesley.

“We would like to thank all students, family, friends and community members who attended the event,” said club adviser Paola Nilsen.

Bayview and Bellew Student-Artists Recognized by State Senate

Bayview and Bellew Student-Artists Recognized by State Senate
Bayview and Bellew Student-Artists Recognized by State Senate
Talented young West Islip student-artists – nine fifth graders from Bayview and 19 third graders from Bellew – recently created posters for the New York State Senate’s Earth Day program, which encourages students to become aware of ways they can reduce, reuse and recycle. Each student was presented with a certificate and letter of recognition by State Sen. Phil Boyle.

Statement on Legislation Removing Non-Medical Exemption from School Vaccination Requirements

On June 13, 2019, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo signed legislation removing non-medical exemptions from school vaccination requirements for children. The United States is currently experiencing the worst outbreak of measles in more than 25 years, with outbreaks in pockets of New York primarily driving the crisis.

As a result of non-medical vaccination exemptions, many communities across New York have unacceptably low rates of vaccination, and those unvaccinated children can often attend school where they may spread the disease to other unvaccinated students, some of whom cannot receive vaccines due to medical conditions. This new law will help protect the public amid this ongoing outbreak.

Attachments:

West Islip Recognizes 33 Secondary Students for Scoring Medals on National Spanish Exams

West Islip Recognizes 33 Secondary Students for Scoring Medals on National Spanish Exams
West Islip Recognizes 33 Secondary Students for Scoring Medals on National Spanish Exams 2
West Islip Recognizes 33 Secondary Students for Scoring Medals on National Spanish Exams 3
A total of 33 exceptional language students from the high school and middle schools recently scored gold, silver or bronze on the National Spanish Exam.

Beach Street eighth graders in Maria LaPinta’s class who scored medals on the Level 1 exam were gold medalists Bradynn Alessi, Sophia Bahm, Eugene Ditaranto and Isabella Keogan; silver medalists Emily Bahm, Asfar Chaudhry, Amanda Dolan, Avery Lanzarotta and Alexander Prokopiou; and bronze medalists Aixa Dadd, Keston Hartman, Meghan Henry, Kayla Huners, Erick Rivas, Sebastian Roman, Samantha Sadowski and Gabriella Toala.

Udall eighth graders in Kristina Rocco’s class who scored medals on the Level 1 exam were gold medalist Edward Chrostek; silver medalists Jack Greene, Elizabeth Lam, Andrew Rao and Vincenza Robiglio; and bronze medalists Eiurlan Coppola and Grace Iehle.

High school students in Maria Simeone’s class who scored medals on the Level 3 exam were gold medalist Amanda Ditaranto; silver medalists Sophia Crudele, John DiBenedetto and Olivia Minissale; and bronze medalists Angelina Amatulli-Griffith, Alexa Camillery, Emily Lau, Lindsey Pritchard and Kevin Rion.

Softball Lions Play in Third Consecutive Semifinals

Softball Lions Play in Third Consecutive Semifinals
Softball Lions Play in Third Consecutive Semifinals 2
Softball Lions Play in Third Consecutive Semifinals 3
The 2019 varsity softball team, guided by coaches Kourtney Proske and MacKenzie Buckley, finished another terrific season, making it as far as the Section XI county semifinals for the third consecutive year.

Senior Jake Maresca Earns $2K ASSET Scholarship

Senior Jake Maresca Earns $2K ASSET Scholarship
Senior Jake Maresca Earns $2K ASSET Scholarship 2
Senior Jake Maresca Earns $2K ASSET Scholarship 3
High school student Jake Maresca was one of a dozen Suffolk County seniors to receive a $2,000 scholarship and gift from the Association of Suffolk Supervisors for Educational Technology at a May 23 ceremony. Each year ASSET offers this award annually to 10 to 12 deserving students who will be entering into higher education and studying fields that integrate technology.

“After viewing the recipients’ video applications, all of those attending were able to witness how Jake’s passion for robotics has shaped what he hopes to continue in his higher education pursuits,” said Reanna Fulton, the district’s director of technology.

Junior Andrea Gomez Wins LIMMIL Music Scholarship

Junior Andrea Gomez Wins LIMMIL Music Scholarship
High school junior Andrea Gomez, a member of both the choral and orchestral programs at the school, has been awarded a scholarship for private musical instruction from Life Is Music, Music Is Life. Applicants were required to write an essay, pass an interview and perform for the LIMMIL scholarship committee. 

Meet the Valedictorian and Salutatorian for 2019

Meet the Valedictorian and Salutatorian for 2019
Meet the Valedictorian
Meet the Salutatorian
The high school’s valedictorian and salutatorian for the Class of 2019 are Madison Esposito and Douglas Dillman, respectively.

Esposito, who earned a weighted GPA of 106.57, is an accomplished scientist. A New York American Chemical Society award recipient, she served as project leader at Brookhaven National Laboratory and earned a Second Place Grand Award at the Long Island Science and Engineering Fair. She also serves as the director of the school’s literary magazine and senior leader for the Rotary Youth Leadership Association, is first chair viola for the chamber orchestra, and plays on the varsity field hockey team. Esposito will attend Princeton University, majoring in astrophysics and English.

Douglas Dillman, who earned a weighted GPA of 105.89, is an International Baccalaureate Diploma Candidate. He serves as president of the National Honor Society and West Islip Thirst Project, is a member of Century Club, and is a recipient of the State Sen. Phil Boyle Leadership Award. Dillman will attend Georgia Institute of Technology, majoring in civil engineering.

West Islip Kicks Off First Unified Basketball Season

West Islip Kicks Off First Unified Basketball Season

The high school recently kicked off its first unified basketball season with great success. The unified basketball team is composed of co-ed students from grades 9-12 and combines players with intellectual disabilities and those without intellectual disabilities on the same court against similar competition. Under the direction of teacher Phil DePompeo and social worker Erin Bies, aided by student volunteers, the team has demonstrated tremendous teamwork and growth.

“The introduction of this team has enriched social interactions among the student body and has elevated school spirit,” said Athletic Director Tim Horan.





Beach Street’s Denise Cain Named Teacher of Excellence

Beach Street’s Denise Cain Named Teacher of Excellence
Denise Cain of Beach Street recently received the 2019 Teacher of Excellence Award from State Sen. Phil Boyle during the program’s fourth annual awards ceremony on May 9.

“This award recognizes outstanding educators whose tireless advocacy, commitment and dedication often go unrecognized,” said Tim Horan, the district’s director of health, physical education, athletics, recreation, and family and consumer science. “Ms. Cain is a 33-year educator who has had a profound positive impact on her students, staff, faculty and the West Islip community. She was selected from many outstanding West Islip educators and we wish her a fulfilling retirement.”

Lions Win League Baseball Championship

Lions Win League Baseball Championship
Guided by head coach Shawn Rush and assistant coaches Joe LaCova and Richard Zeitler, the high school’s varsity baseball team won the 2019 League IV championship. This is the fourth year in a row that the Lions have earned that title, along with two county and one Long Island championship.


Anjolie Falbo Chosen as One of "Long Island’s Best"

Anjolie Falbo Chosen as One of
High school student Anjolie Falbo was recently selected for the 22nd annual “Long Island’s Best: Young Artists at the Heckscher Museum” gallery show. Chosen among work by hundreds of participating students from schools in Queens, Nassau and Suffolk counties, Falbo’s winning piece was displayed at the Huntington museum.


Bayview Second Graders Play at Being Pioneers

Bayview Second Graders Play at Being Pioneers

Second graders in Ashley Caldone’s class at Bayview recently participated in a “Pioneer Day,” where desks were turned into covered wagons and students came to school dressed up as pioneers.

Among the activities the students engaged in were building the Transcontinental Railroad, creating colorful quilts, panning for gold, measuring different territories, matching vocabulary words, writing in Morse code and listening to digital texts.  




Community Volunteers for Career Day at Bellew

Community Volunteers for Career Day at Bellew

Bellew was transformed into Career Central on May 20, with students from kindergarten through fifth grade exploring many different career possibilities through in-class presentations and hands-on learning experiences. Parents and local community members volunteered their time to share their knowledge and expertise with the students. Visitors on this fourth annual Career Day included doctors, police officers, FBI agents, nurses, sailing enthusiasts, business owners, attorneys and a dog walker.




IB Students Explore Historic Sites in DC

IB Students Explore Historic Sites in DC
IB Students Explore Historic Sites in DC 2
The high school’s IB History of the Americas classes visited Washington, DC in April, exploring the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture, Arlington National Cemetery, Ford’s Theatre and the Frederick Douglass National Historic Site.

Sophomore Evan Lam Qualifies for Tennis Championship

Sophomore Evan Lam Qualifies for Tennis Championship
Varsity boys tennis player Evan Lam, a sophomore, recently qualified to play in the 2019 Section XI Individual Tennis Championship held at East Islip High School.

Udall Sixth Graders Interview Julian Lennon on Earth Day

Udall Sixth Graders Interview Julian Lennon on Earth Day
Sixth graders in Jeanette Merola’s and Janet Renganeschi’s classes at Udall traveled to New York City on Earth Day to interview Grammy-nominated musician, philanthropist and author Julian Lennon. The students met with Lennon to discuss his new book, “Love the Earth,” the conclusion of a bestselling trilogy, and spoke to him about Lennon’s humanitarian efforts, which inspired the writing of his books. His White Feather Foundation was created in 2007 with the key initiatives being the education, health, conservation and the protection of indigenous cultures.  





Fun with Friction at Oquenock’s STEM lab

Fun with Friction at Oquenock’s STEM lab
Students in Michelle Bonkov’s third grade class at Oquenock recently tested objects in the STEM lab to find out which had the least and most amounts of friction. Students were tasked with determining which types of materials would work the best in designing a slide.


HS Recognizes 26 College-Bound Seniors

HS Recognizes 26 College-Bound Seniors
A terrific tally of 26 outstanding seniors have committed to play Division I, II and III college athletics this fall.

The students are: Maximus Albanese (lacrosse, Vassar College), Michael Alexander (lacrosse, Yale University; Jack Altieri (baseball, Farmingdale College), Kimberly Arena (track and field, SUNY Cortland), Tom Armetta (lacrosse, SUNY New Paltz), Julianna Budriss (softball, St. John’s University), Jillian Caroselli (lacrosse, Duquesne University), Adriane Casey (swimming and diving, SUNY Cortland), Anthony Cinquemani (baseball, St. Joseph’s College), Erin Corcoran (field hockey, University of New Haven), Kyle Cronin (track and field, Adelphi University), Patrick Cunningham (lacrosse, Assumption College), Jason DeCoteau (lacrosse, SUNY Geneseo), Nicholas Groia (lacrosse, DeSales University), Connor Harris (lacrosse, Western Connecticut University), Michael LaDonna (baseball, New York Institute of Technology), Danielle Marino (lacrosse, Syracuse University), Caitlin Neglia (volleyball, Misericordia University), Dylan Pape (lacrosse, Siena College), Jared Paquette (lacrosse, Yale University), Peyton Ryan (basketball, Springfield College), Ava Sesto (lacrosse, Pace University), Nick Siano (baseball, Manhattanville College), Christopher Sparks (lacrosse, University of Tampa), Marion Wegener (tennis, Queens College) and Cody White (track and field, SUNY Cortland).

“Congratulations to these student-athletes who have committed to play college athletics,” said Athletic Director Tim Horan, who congratulated them alongside Principal Anthony Bridgeman. “The West Islip community is proud to have them represent us as they move on to higher education.”

Robotics Team Comes Home with Two Awards

Robotics Team Comes Home with Two Awards
Robotics Team Comes Home with Two Awards 2
Robotics Team Comes Home with Two Awards 3
The high school’s robotics team No. 871 won the Innovation in Control Award and was a runner-up for the Safety Award at the 2019 Hudson Valley Regional FIRST Robotics Competition in Suffern, NY.