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An Evening of Recognitions

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The district celebrated a number of accomplishments on both the student and staff level during the Nov. 13 board of education Meeting held in the cafeteria of Bayport-Blue Point High School. 

To begin the night’s recognitions, the Bayport-Blue Point High School students who were recognized as Advanced Placement Scholars by the College Board were called to the front of the room and presented with of tokens of appreciation for their accomplishments. The attending students consist of the 86 Bayport-Blue Point High School students who have earned Advanced Placement Scholar awards from the College Board, including both current students and members of the Class of 2018. 

Bayport-Blue Point High School science teacher Krista Peterson was recognized for recently being selected as one of 275 additional teachers throughout the state to participate in Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s New York State Master Teacher Program. Mrs. Peterson was met with words of praise from both Superintendent of Schools Dr. Timothy Hearney and Bayport-Blue Point High School Principal Dr. Gaurav Passi for her accomplishment. 

Blue Point Elementary School second-grade teacher Meghan Mills was named Teacher of the Month for the month of October as per nominations by her colleagues and principal. Ms. Mills is regarded as having her students strive to meet their goals and reach their full potential with her constant encouragement and support. She is known to be both generous and collaborative, always willing to assist and share ideas.  

Additionally, Academy Street Elementary School fourth-grade teacher Kimberly Rall was recognized as the district’s Teacher of the Month for the month of September, and was presented with a token of appreciation courtesy of the Board of Education. According to one of her colleagues at Academy, “Kim brings a sense of calm to her colleagues as well as her students. She inspires a love of learning for all, and is supportive and a team player.”

Honoring Veterans

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Staff and students from Sylvan Avenue Elementary School recently gathered in the school’s cafeteria to celebrate and honor the nation’s veterans in their annual Veterans Recognition Day assembly.

To begin the morning’s celebrations, Sylvan Avenue Elementary School Principal Alane Dugan addressed the crowd and thanked everyone for attending this special assembly before asking everyone to turn and face the flag for the Pledge of Allegiance. Members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2913 were in attendance, and commander Dave Rogers engaged the students in a question and answer session surrounding the topic of servicemen and women. 

Long Island Office of Veteran Affairs Representative Karen Saffari spoke to students about her firsthand account as serving as a medic in the U.S. Army from 1997-2000. Mrs. Saffari invited students up to the stage to try on her military-grade rucksack, and demonstrated the usage of the entrenching tool she brought along to show the students. 

To the crowd’s surprise, America’s VetDogs beneficiary Hugh Riley surprised the students by bringing along the service-dog “Hoola,” who is trained to assist veterans with everyday tasks such as closing the refrigerator door and warning their owner about an oncoming medical issue.

Along with contributions from the Teacher’s Union, staff and students of Sylvan Avenue Elementary School raised $250 which will be donated to America’s VetDogs. Additionally, the students were able to raise approximately $550 which will directly benefit the Honor Flight Network.

The district would like to thank Sylvan Avenue Elementary School speech and language pathologists Laurie Katz and Christine Monahan for organizing this wonderful assembly.

Joining the National Junior Honor Society

Joining the National Junior Honor Society photo

Earlier this month, James Wilson Young Middle School recognized the 59 members of the National Junior Honor Society during the school’s annual induction ceremony. The recognized students were joined by district administration, staff members and family in honor of their multiple academic and altruistic achievements.

During the course of the evening, students were provided with inspiring speeches from Bayport Blue Point High School's Honor Society President Michael Grogan, as well as Vice Presidents Parker Schug and Matt Nolan. 

National Junior Honor Society student-musicians filled the air with lovely music during the celebration, led by chorus teacher Adam Mazzaferro, orchestra teacher Carl Leichthammer and band teacher Matthew Hurst. Additionally, a musical solo was sung by National Junior Honor Society member Emily Denton. 

After the five pillars of the National Junior Honor Society were represented through a candlelighting ceremony, James Wilson Young Middle School Principal Robert Haas, along with Assistant Principal Nicole Cush, presented members with official certificates of membership. The evening concluded when members were formally inducted into the society through the official National Junior Honor Society pledge of oath, led by Mr. Haas.

After the ceremony, all in attendance were invited to the school’s lobby to enjoy food and refreshments as provided by the James Wilson Young Middle School Parent-Teacher Association. 

Donating to Veterans

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Students from Christina Schroeder’s second-grade class and Jaime Abran’s third-grade class at Academy Street Elementary School recently came together to gather essential food items in recognition of Veterans Day and those individuals who have sacrificed so much to serve the country. The students were kind enough to bring in a large number of nonperishables including pasta, stuffing, canned vegetables and various boxes of cereal. All items were donated to The Veteran’s Place of Yaphank.

Showing Appreciation for the Board of Education

Showing Appreciation for the Board of Education photo

In recognition of School Board Recognition week, students throughout the district recently showcased their admiration and appreciation for all that the Bayport-Blue Point Board of Education does for the community.

Student representatives, along with the principals of the majority of district educational buildings, were on hand to present the members of the Board of Education with delightful works of art featuring the signatures of all students from each respective building. 

Additionally, student-musicians from both the James Wilson Young Middle School and Bayport-Blue Point High School were on hand to dazzle the attendees with their unparalleled musical talents.

Celebrating Native American Culture

Celebrating Native American Culture photo

As an extension of their classroom lessons, fourth-grade students at Blue Point Elementary School were recently taken on an educational adventure into the rich history of Native American culture.

The presentations were brought to the school courtesy of representatives of the Long Island-based “Journeys into American Indian Territory” program. Classes were divided amongst different parts of the school, including an outdoor activity session, and a museum/hands-on demonstration in the classrooms pertaining to different traditional Native American customs.

During the museum portion of the day, Journeys into American Indian Territory Director Bob Vetter spoke about the tribes’ daily lives and gave students the opportunity to interact with genuine Iroquois and Algonquian artifacts. The students were informed that women of the tribe primarily gathered essential foods such as corn, beans and berries, while the men would hunt for meat with their go-to weapon, the spear. 

Growing Toward Success

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As an addition to their STEM-based education, students enrolled in Theresa Stevens’ and Kristen Rang’s third-grade class at Blue Point Elementary School have been working on their flourishing Tower Garden, a gift received from the school’s Parent Teacher Association.  

While spending time interacting and learning how to utilize the tall structure, students have been actively growing basil, kale, bok choy and more, all of which the students and staff are able to sample and incorporate into delicious salads.

Additionally, as a supplement to their mathematics curriculum, the students carefully record and measure the growth of their plants, keeping close track of the progress during the growing stages. 

According to Ms. Stevens, the ultimate goal of the Tower Garden is for the students to maintain optimal health and learn to make healthy food choices. 

Pumpkin Power

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In celebration of the fall season, students from Carrie Almskog’s fourth-grade class at Academy Street Elementary School recently utilized their skills spanning multiple academic subjects as they worked collaboratively on a pumpkin-themed activity.

With assistance from parent volunteers, the students rotated through five pumpkin-themed stations and worked together to measure their pumpkins’ physical properties, create an artistic interpretation and guess if the gourd was buoyant in water.   

At the final station, the students drew inspiration from the novel “James and the Giant Peach” to write a creative essay explaining what it would be like to explore the inside of a pumpkin. 

Bayport-Blue Point High School Students Keep Islip Clean

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The district would like to congratulate Bayport-Blue Point High School students Marco Daidone and Sydney Baron for being inducted as junior commissioners into the local community service organization Keep Islip Clean.

Both Marco and Sydney were nominated to participate in the program due to their unwavering demonstration of environmental concern as well as social, civic and academic responsibility. They were officially inducted as junior commissioners to the program during a swearing in ceremony by the Islip Town Board.

KIC’s objective is to enable and encourage young citizens to play an active role in making Islip a cleaner and more beautiful place in which to live and instill in them a sense of pride and ownership for their community. The junior commissioners are selected from school districts within The Town of Islip and meet each month to exchange ideas, challenges and solutions with each other or complete a hands-on project. Many of these ideas are then implemented in the Bayport-Blue Point High School with assistance from Ecology Club members.

“Our congratulations and thanks go out to these two exemplary young people for working to make our community a more beautiful place,” said Bayport-Blue Point High School Science Teacher Amity Baum-Tuccillo.

Academy Street's 2nd Annual Battle of the Books

Last week at Academy Street, 4th and 5th graders celebrated their love of literacy with ASE’s second Battle of the Books!  Teams competed by answering questions on eight summer-reading books. Additionally, the audience, composed of 3rd and the remaining 4th and 5th graders, answered questions on the One School One Book One Community summer reading choice of The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo. The winner of the 2018 Battle of the Books was Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabenstein. Last year’s winner was Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Florence and Richard Atwater. Grab a copy if you have not read them yet! 

Firefighters for the Day

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In recognition of Fire Prevention Month, students from Blue Point Elementary School recently traveled across the street to the Blue Point Fire Department to step into the shoes of firefighters, as they learned about the daily routines of a firefighter and the importance of fire safety. 

Upon entering the firehouse, students attended a safety lesson and viewed a highly informational video. Additionally, they were told of the proper ways to extinguish a fire and reminded about the importance of making sure that smoke detectors batteries are changed every six months. 

Students were then led outside and offered a glimpse toward the tools firefighters use on a daily basis, including fire extinguishers, various types of axes and the jaws of life. They also climbed inside ladder trucks and were given the opportunity to enter the smoke house simulator, which further prepared them in the rare event that a fire breaks out in their own home. 

Visiting the Bob Venero Fitness Center

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The Bayport-Blue Point High School recently unveiled the completed Bob Venero Fitness Center, a state-of-the-art fitness training facility which grants students access to dozens of cardio fitness tools such as exercise bikes, rowing machines and medicine balls in an effort to improve and maintain optimal physical health. 

In tandem with the newly renovated center, the students are now able to enjoy a spin class, taught by Bayport-Blue Point High School physical education teacher Tricia Livingston. Using the numerous available exercise bicycles, the students’ workouts are accompanied by a giant projector wall simulating cycling in the outdoors, along with an impressive sound system.

“The district is extremely grateful for the remarkable donation afforded to us by Mr. and Mrs. Bob Venero,” said Director of Physical Education, Health & Interscholastic Sports Timothy Mullins. “This contribution has morphed our Fitness Center into one of the most state-of-the-art facilities within a public-school setting. The new equipment has already positively impacted hundreds of students and athletes. Not only has this helped better prepare our athletes for competition, this upgraded venue has also transformed our physical education curriculum in a positive manner. Every high school student is now afforded an opportunity to partake in a healthy active lifestyle within a comfortable learning environment.”

Mr. Venero, a Bayport-Blue Point High School alumnus, is the CEO & founder of Future Tech Enterprise, Inc. 

Excellence in Teaching

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The district would like to congratulate Bayport-Blue Point High School science teacher Krista Peterson for being recently selected as one of 275 additional teachers throughout the state to participate in Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s New York State Master Teacher Program.

The NYS Master Teacher Program is a network of K-12 STEM teachers throughout the state, focusing on enhancing STEM knowledge and professional development as well as working with current and pre-service teachers to support the next generation of STEM teachers.  

“Education is the cornerstone to success, and it is the brilliant, dedicated teachers in New York who make a difference in countless lives and inspire the leaders of tomorrow," Governor Cuomo said. "Congratulations to the 275 newest members of the Master Teacher Program, who will join the ranks of the top educators in the state as they work to further their skills and their impact on students in every corner of this great state.”

In order to be considered for the program, Mrs. Peterson went through a robust application process involving an intensive written application, personal essay, multiple recommendations, an in-person interview, a writing sample and a demonstration lesson. She will participate amongst other selected teachers in the program for a total of four years.

“Mrs. Peterson has developed a strong reputation as an outstanding teacher in our building,” said Bayport-Blue Point High School Principal Dr. Gaurav Passi. “She has strong content knowledge, the ability to engage and motivate students, leadership and collaborative skills, and a genuine interest in professional development.”

Recognizing Contributions

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The district’s Oct. 9 Board of Education meeting recognized both teachers and community members alike for their selfless contributions to the Bayport-Blue Point school community. 

Ted Lap, a Bayport-Blue Point High School Class of ’66 alumnus, was thanked for his donation of a gorgeous mahogany podium, which he built entirely by himself. Both the Board of Education and Bayport-Blue Point School District Superintendent of Schools Dr. Timothy Hearney were extremely grateful for this one-of-a-kind and lasting contribution to the school community. 

Additionally, Bayport-Blue Point High School social studies teacher John Limperatos was recognized for being named “Teacher of the Year,” and met with praise from the board and community attendees.

“Mr. Limperatos always challenges students to do their best,” said Dr. Hearney. “He is their ‘go-to’ person; someone the students feel comfortable with. Thank you for all that you do for the students and our district.”

Advanced Placement Scholars

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The district is proud to announce that 86 Bayport-Blue Point High School students have earned Advanced Placement Scholar awards from the College Board. These honorees include both current students and members of the Class of 2018. 

Of the 86 total students, 40 received the AP Scholar title for receiving a score of 3 or higher on three or more AP Exams. Eighteen students were named AP Scholar with Honor, as they achieved an average score of at least 3.25 on all of their AP Exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on four or more of these exams. Additionally, 28 students were awarded with AP Scholar with Distinction, as they achieved an average score of at least 3.5 on all exams taken with scores of 3 or higher on five or more of these exams. Four graduates in the Class of 2018, Frank Giacchetto, Ben Marantz, Benjamin Papa and Kevin Polanish, earned the high honor of National AP Scholar. This award is given to students who have earned a score of at least 4 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 4 or higher on eight or more of those exams. 

Students enrolled in the school’s offered AP courses are challenged academically with college-level material allowing them the opportunity to potentially earn college credit while still in high school. Bayport-Blue Point High School boasts a number of Advanced Placement courses for the students to enroll in, including, but not limited to, AP Computer Science, AP Government and Politics and AP Music Theory. 

Energy Performance Contract Vote Results

EPC Voting Results:
Yes: 385
No: 86

Thank you to the entire Bayport-Blue Point School District community for your participation in the special referendum for an Energy Performance Contract. With your support, the district will now be able to secure additional New York State building aid to support our efforts to create greener and more efficient schools.

The Power of Reading

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The district would like to congratulate the students of Sylvan Avenue Elementary School for being declared winners of the Bayport-Blue Point Public Library’s Summer Reading Program.

This past June, the library media specialists at Academy Street, Blue Point and Sylvan Avenue elementary schools collaborated with the public library and shared this exciting contest with all of their students. It was determined that the school with the most participants and books read would win the coveted trophy and have it placed on display in their school’s library for the upcoming school year. 

Sylvan Avenue’s top readers were Skylar Johnson with 114 books, Liliana Galano with 74 books, Michelle Rosenzweig with 57 books and Riley DeSimone with 49 books. The program was a resounding success as the grand total of 7,074 books surpassed last summer’s total of 4,655.

Hitting All the Right Notes

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Based on their incredible musical talents, nine Bayport-Blue Point High School students have been recognized as premier musicians by New York State Music Association and were invited to participate in this year’s All-State and All-County music festivals. 

Students Aidan Conklin (mixed chorus), Emily Phua (symphonic band), Daphne Sparacio (vocal jazz alternate) and Connor Teague (vocal jazz alternate) have been named All-State student-musicians and were invited to participate in the 2018 NYSSMA All-State Conference to be held in Rochester, New York from Nov. 29– Dec. 3. 

Additionally, students Rachel Burger (clarinet), Katelyn Curran (alto I), Samuel Lent (bass II), Andrew Shiebler (trumpet) and Matthew Stawecki (clarinet) were named All-County student musicians and are slated to perform at Half Hollow Hills West High School on Friday, Nov. 16, at 7:30 p.m. alongside other selected musicians.

Celebrating Homecoming 2018

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Community members of the distirct showcased their Phantom Pride on Sept. 22 as residents of all ages joined together for the annual homecoming celebration taking place on the athletic field of Bayport-Blue Point High School. 

Prior to the football game against Babylon Junior-Senior High School, an induction ceremony was held at Bayport-Blue Point High School in the morning that recognized former athletes and athletic contributors whose names and photographs have been added to the school’s Hall of Fame. The district congratulates Harry Blank, Kim Larson, Jeff Rowett, Deanna Schmidt and Kerry Stoothoff for all of their successes and contributions thus far. 

Students, families and community residents lined the streets near Bayport-Blue Point High School and the surrounding area to cheer on student-athletes, cheerleaders, musicians and homecoming royalty, as they made their way through town along the parade route cheerfully greeting all in their path. 

With perfect weather for a football game on hand, the Bayport-Blue Point High School varsity football team was geared up and ready to face off against the visiting Babylon Junior-Senior High School football team for their first home game of the season. The Phantoms played the game with a stunning display of athleticism on both the defensive and offensive end, but unfortunately came up short with a final score of 36-14 by the end of the fourth quarter. 

During the halftime ceremony, the senior class was named winner of the float contest with their excellent portrayal of “Alice in Wonderland” in keeping with this year’s theme of “Disney.” Seniors Orlando Diaz and Emma Gluchowski were named homecoming king and queen, respectively.

Congratulating Student-Artists

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The Sept. 17 Board of Education meeting celebrated the accomplishments of multiple student-artists from all district educational buildings. 

Bayport-Blue Point Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction Dr. Theodore Fulton addressed the attendees and invited a number of talented student-artists to the front of the auditorium. These students were honored for having their artistic talents selected for display in both the district’s annual calendar and at the central administration building. Each student was personally thanked by both Superintendent of Schools Dr. Timothy Hearney and Bayport-Blue Point Board of Education President Michael Miller before receiving a token of appreciation for their efforts. 

Bayport-Blue Point Eagle