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Publicizing Their School Pride

Publicizing Their School Pride photo
Members of the Public Relations Club at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School are working hard to share all of the wonderful activities happening in their school community. 

The club, now in its second year, is run by advisers and teachers Kerri Hall and Matthew Loughren. The club is open to all high school students and there are currently approximately 12 active members.

The club’s mission is to capture, share and promote all the activities at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School. Each month, the club plans who will be covering sporting events and school functions. They share their photos on social media and with the yearbook club. Many of the members of the club say they like photography and the club gives them an opportunity to get more involved in school functions. Others like the chance to meet new classmates and make connections with teachers via the different events they cover.

Winter Athletes Honored at Annual Event

Winter Athletes Honored at Annual Event photo

Copiague School District held its annual winter sports awards dinner for its varsity athletes at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School on March 5. Sponsored by the Copiague Booster Club, the awards recognize the accomplishments of the student-athletes both on and off the field.

Coaches, administrators and Copiague Board of Education members congratulated athletes from girls bowling, boys bowling, girls basketball, girls winter track, boys basketball, boys winter track and wrestling teams. 

Coaches called athletes up front to be recognized and celebrated both their individual and team achievements during the season. They also distributed individual awards, including the Coaches’ Award, Most Improved and the MVP award, to worthy receipients. 

Seven Golden Eagle awards were presented to students from each team with the highest cumulative grade point average. This year, Melanie Garcia (girls bowling), Jonah Breskin (boys bowling), Marvin Pineda Lobo (wrestling), Faith McCombs (girls basketball), Erhumwunse Eghafona (boys basketball), Nicole Hernandez (girls track) and Luis Castillo (boys track) were recipients of the Golden Eagle awards.



Celebrating Black History and Culture

Celebrating Black History and Culture photo

Students showcased their musical and theatrical talents for the annual Black History Month celebration at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School on Feb. 28. This year’s theme was “Honor the Past, Inspiring the Future.”

Ajhani Carroll and Jahnay Cuffy hosted the event and introduced the different performances. They explained that the purpose of the after-school event was to showcase black history as an integral part of American history while celebrating the richness of black culture. 

The Madrigal Choir opened with a performance of “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” known as the black national anthem. They returned to the stage to perform the Zimbabwe greeting “Sorida,” a traditional Sea Islands medley “Yonder Come Day” and a traditional gospel song “He’ll Make A Way.”

The drama club reenacted a scene from the front of the Selma courthouse when segregation ended. There were also cultural performances by the jazz band, dance troupe, and high school and middle school steppers.

New Leadership Inducted Into Voice to Voice

New Leadership Inducted Into Voice to Voice photo

Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School held its voice to voice leadership induction ceremony for the 2019 cohort on Feb. 15 in the school’s library.

Eight female students were inducted during the ceremony and presented with certificates by Assistant Principal Tamika Eason and pearls by the members of the current leadership. In order to qualify for induction, students were required to interview for their positions. The leaders help to facilitate both of the voice to voice empowerment workshops. Leaders also meet monthly to discuss women’s issues. 

The goal of the organization is to help young females find their inner strength and power. The mission of the initiative is to motivate and empower one another through teamwork and conversation. It was developed to provide opportunities for young women to gain awareness of their individual and collection skills, experiences and professional goals.

The following students were inducted into the voice to voice leadership: Delia Exantus, Nickia James, Jasmine Jimenez, Mariah McDougall, Jillian McLowrin, Amy Moskowitz, Kenia Rodriguez and Gianna Torres. The new inductees recited the leadership pledge and joined with existing members in circle to close out the ceremony.

Copiague Poets Showcase their Skills

Copiague Poets Showcase their Skills photo
Walter G. O'Connell Copiague High School was represented at the annual Poetry Out Loud competition on Feb. 11 by senior Alana Kelske and sophomore Bridgette Mendoza. The poetry recitation competition is an opportunity for students to perform three chosen poems by famous poets. The English department is proud to have students recite poetry among their peers from throughout Long Island, especially at the Walt Whitman birthplace in Huntington, the site of this year’s competition. 

Drama Students Prep for Performances

Drama Students Prep for Performances photo
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Drama Students Prep for Performances photo 5
Students in the advanced drama class at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School are hard at work developing their skills for their upcoming Pantomime Show. The students were working on skits for “Alice in Wonderland,” “Three Little Pigs” and “Rapunzel.” The course investigates a broad range of modern and contemporary theories, ideologies, techniques and processes in the field of stage acting. The advanced drama students also perform in a Drama Night and visit the elementary school for the K.A.T.S. show, which addresses social issues. 

Booster Club Honors Women in Sports

Booster Club Honors Women in Sports photo
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In recognition of National Girls and Women in Sports Day, the district honored Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School girls assistant varsity basketball coach Gabrielle Gibson on Feb. 5 during a halftime presentation.

Ms. Gibson was presented with a plaque for her contributions by the Copiague Booster Club. Ms. Gibson was a key member and all-star athlete as part of the Copiague girls 2009 New York State Championship basketball team. During her time in the district, she became a 2000-plus point scorer and earned All-County, All-Long Island and All-State honors. She went on to play basketball at Assumption College, where she was named freshman player of the year and became the second all-time leading scorer. 

For the past six years, Ms. Gibson has continued to develop her passion for the sport and desire to impact young female athletes in a positive way. She has launched  her basketball training business and serves as a basketball official. 

Wrestling

wrestling photo
Congratulations to Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School senior wrestler Paul Illicete (170 pounds), who placed sixth at the NYS wrestling championships in Albany during the weekend of Feb. 22-23. He is the first wrestler in Copiague history to attend the states and place twice.

Recognizing Excellence at Awards Ceremony

Recognizing Excellence at Awards Ceremony photo

The Copiague Board of Education hosted their biannual Student Recognition Awards ceremony to honor the outstanding accomplishments of its students on Jan. 28 in the Copiague Middle School auditorium.

The event is a way for the board of education to recognize excellence and the successes of students throughout the district. During the ceremony, board members read a list of accolades and accomplishments that students achieved this school year. 

Each of the 17 student-honorees was presented with a framed certificate presented by Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kathleen Bannon. The district congratulates the following students: Deauville Gardens East: Amelia Bright and Darlene Herrera; Deauville Gardens West: Kieran Erickson and Ny’Shawn Legette; Great Neck Road: Hunter Nicholas Natoli and Hailey Wendel; Susan E. Wiley: Kaitlyn Caldwell and Jonathan Marine Suarez; Copiague Middle School: Iran Sophia Gonzalez, Vaiva Kean, Andrew James O’Connell and Neisy Rivera Garcia; Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School: Ajhani Carroll, Wilson Murcia, Arelee Ramirez, Brenda Reyes and Kyree Scott.



Boys Track Takes Title

Boys Track Takes Title photo
Boys Track Takes Title photo 2
The Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School varsity boys track and field team won the League II championship meet for the first time in school history on Jan. 19. The team was led by seniors as they scored 65 of the team’s 91 points. Thirteen athletes, representing grades 9-12, earned All-League status with Jackson Bright, Khalil Chester and James Holland earning league champions titles in the high jump, 300 meter and long jump, respectively.  

Top 20 Students Leave an Impression in Copiague

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Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School honored the accomplishments of its top 20 students in the graduating class of 2019 during a special luncheon in the school’s cafeteria on Jan. 25. The luncheon was a way to not only recognize the students but also to honor the teachers who helped them in their successes.

Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School Principal Joseph Agosta welcomed students, faculty, administrators, members of the board of education and family to the event. He addressed the parents and family members in attendance, thanking them for their role in each students’ success. “You are your child’s lifelong teacher,” he said. “They are here today because of your involvement, encouragement and support.”

Mr. Agosta encouraged the students to get involved in all that life has to offer. “Surround yourself with people who make you want to be a better person,” he said. “Remember the values you learned here in Copiague and continue to strive for excellence in everything you do.”

In chronological order, beginning at No. 20, Mr. Agosta introduced each student and read a short summary of their accomplishments and anticipated post-high school endeavors. Following their introduction, the students proceeded to the podium, where they expressed their gratitude to the teacher whom they value most and credit for helping them through their academic journey in the Copiague School District.

The district congratulates the top 20 students (in order beginning with No. 20): Emily Korba; Iris Romero; Mery Gomez Herrera; Faith McCombs; Darley Senat; Jocelyn Fernandez; Lacy McIntyre; Justin Taveras; Luis Castillo; Julia Brzozka; Kailee St. Angelo; Melinda Mercedes; Jahnay Cuffy: Jonathan Conlon; Jackson Bright; Liam Mahabir; Owen Rosenberg; Aleksandra Bugajczyk; Abigail Romero; and Aaron Eng. 



Student-Musicians Head to All-County Festival

Student-Musicians Head to All-County Festival photo
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Thirty-one student-musicians will represent the Copiague School District at the 2019 Suffolk County Music Educators’ Association All-County Music Festival in March. Each of these students received outstanding scores on their performance at the NYSSMA solo and ensemble evaluation festivals last May.

Selection to the All-County band and chorus is the highest honor a student of music in grades 5-10 can attain. The district congratulates the following students:

SCMEA All-County I West Band
Esmeralda Claros Sanchez (flute)
Eve Estevez-Rivera (baritone/euph)
Alyson Tenebro (flute)
Rhianna Coleman (Bb clarinet)
Andrew Wagner (Bb clarinet)
Ismael Garcia (trumpet/cornet)
Raisaun Gibson (trombone)
Analiz Rosario (alto sax)
Dyson Brown (alto sax)
Hannah Alara (Bb clarinet)

SCMEA All-County II West Band
Shenn Barredo (flute)
Philip Popielarz (baritone/euph)
Sadia Velasquez (Bb clarinet)

SCMEA All-County II West Orchestra
Alice Sztabinski (flute)

SCMEA All-County III West Band
Ryan Bott (tenor sax)
Zuri Milliner (baritone/euph)

SCMEA All-County I West Chorus
Daniella Jiminez
Mykelle Moore
Linda Paiz Romero

SCMEA All-County II West Chorus
Sydney Forbes
Adam Guglielmelli
Ava Reichelt
Dominique Tetlak
Anthony Woods

SCMEA All-County III West Chorus
Jessica Chochorek
Jaheim Garcia
Shannon Greenlee
Denison Rosa
Ariana Tirino
Morgan Weeks
Oktay Yildiz

 

Ugly Doll Drawings Come to Life

 Ugly Doll Drawings Come to Life photo

Forget the cute dolls you can’t wait to snuggle with in bed. Copiague students worked together to create Ugly Dollz.

Students in Christie Layden’s fourth period Studio Workshop class at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School and Jodi Embleton’s fourth-grade art club at Deauville Gardens East Elementary School collaborated on the cross-curriculum project. 

Ms. Embleton’s students drew their best version of a made up monster. When they were complete, they were sent to Mrs. Layden’s class to transform the drawings into real life dolls. Mrs. Layden’s students used the pictures and learned to sew and stuff the dolls. 

Prior to the holiday recess, the art club and high school students joined together for a breakfast to see the dolls. The students were excited to see their monsters come to life. 



Boys Track Relay Team to Compete at Millrose Games

Boys Track Relay Team to Compete at Millrose Games photo
The boys track team competed at the Armory track meet on Jan. 9. The 4 x 400-meter relay team qualified to compete in the 2019 Millrose Games on Feb. 9. The team set a new school record with a time of 3:29.21. The 4 x 400-meter team members are Jackson Bright, Esdras Canales, Khalil Chester and John Jerrick. 

College Day Gives Students Insight on Career Paths

College Day Gives Students Insight on Career Paths photo

Students throughout the Copiague School District showed they are doing their part to be college and career ready during a districtwide College Day on Jan. 11.

While faculty and staff showed off their alma maters by wearing their college shirts, the district’s youngest students dressed for success, either in business attire or the uniform of their career choice. At Great Neck Road Elementary School, students became video game designers and created their own video games. Kindergarten students interviewed one of their school’s security guards about her career choice. Fourth-graders listened to a presentation from a military servicemen who spoke about the benefits of joining the military. 

Second-grade students at Deauville Gardens West Elementary School focused on academic clubs in college and how they compete against different colleges. Each classroom learned about mascots, pennants and college academic clubs. At Susan E. Wiley and Deauville Gardens East elementary schools, students explored different colleges by taking online virtual tours of the campuses and discussing college and career options. 

Middle school students also centered their day around different college and career path lessons, while students at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School has recent high school graduates and current college freshmen come back to the school to discuss some of the experiences, highlights and struggles of college life.