Copiague School District recognized its finest artists and student achievements during a special ceremony held prior to the June 19 board of education meeting.
District administrators, faculty and board members gathered with invited students and their guests in the Copiague Middle School auditorium to celebrate their successes.
Chosen by the Board of Education, the Student Recognition Awards highlight students for their outstanding achievements in their academic, fine arts or community service. They are presented twice a year to a small number of students for their special accomplishments. “Publicly recognizing excellence is our way of celebrating some of the great successes of the Copiague schools’ programs and, at the same time, enabling us to showcase outstanding role models to our school community,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kathleen Bannon.
Twenty students were honored during the ceremony, as board members read a brief description from teachers and principals on why the students were chosen for the award.
The 2017 Superintendent’s Art Gallery inductees and Fine Arts Festival crowd favorites were on display for the audience to enjoy. Now in its 21st year, the Superintendent’s Art Gallery began when the Copiague art teachers selected several pieces of student artwork to display.
Over the years, the collection has grown to provide a showcase of student artwork in corridors and offices in each of the schools. Each of the framed pieces is identified by a brass plate noting the student-artist’s name, grade level and year the piece was completed. Crowd favorite art pieces – four in total this year from the elementary, middle school and high school – are also chosen by the community during the annual Fine Arts Festival.
Copiague School District administrators and Board of Education members recognized the faculty and staff members who will be retiring at the end of the 2016-2017 school year and also acknowledged teachers who were granted tenure during the June 5 board of education meeting.
Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kathleen Bannon, board of education members, district administrators and department chairs offered their congratulations to the five retirees, who have close to 150 years of combined service to the district. Retiring at the end of the school year are Stacy Bach, Rose Marie Bell, Lynne Cook, Deirdre Whiston and Rosette Verriotto.
Four teachers ¬– Karen Kazlaukas, Michael Olsen, Danielle Russo and Ioanna Spyris – who were recently granted tenure, were also celebrated prior to the board of education meeting.
Students at Great Neck Road Elementary School have been busy working on honing their math skills throughout the school year in preparation for the Math Mania event on May 26.
Students came to school dressed in shirts with numbers to show their support for the Math Mania event. Each grade gathered in the library for their online mathematical quiz. Fifth-grade members of the TechTeam club helped assist students in their online setup while Great Neck Road Elementary School technology coach Jeanie Mullins read the rules of the competition.
Students in grades K-5 have been practicing basic math facts throughout the month to commit them to memory. During the first round of Math Mania, students competed to be named one of the top three in their class. Using their tablets, students had to answer 10 questions accurately and quickly. The top three students from each class then went against the other classes from their grade level to be named champions of the competition.
The Suffolk Zone of the New York State Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance sponsored the annual Physical Education Student Leadership Awards Ceremony at Longwood High School on May 3. Students who qualify for the award are recognized for their achievements in physical education, leadership, character and academics.
Honored at the ceremony was Copiague Middle School eighth-graders Sarah Manzanarez and Kenneth Tejada; Deauville Gardens East Elementary School fifth-graders Ava Reichelt and Zachary Rosenzweig; Deauville Gardens West Elementary School fifth-graders Stanley Buissereth and Stefana Lipari; Susan E. Wiley Elementary School fifth-grade students Brian Gonzalez and Jordana Jagnarine; and Great Neck Road Elementary School fifth-grade students Nicole Araujo and Kamar Birthwright.
National School Boards Association President Kevin Ciak, along with district administrators and Copiague School District Board of Education members, spent the afternoon of May 31 touring the many academic offerings of the Copiague School District.
Ciak, who was on Long Island for a speaking engagement at the Nassau-Suffolk School Boards Association’s annual dinner, connected with the Copiague School District through Copiague Board of Education President Brian Sales, who also serves as president of the Nassau-Suffolk School Boards Association.
“We are very proud of Copiague School District and the things we accomplish here and we are honored to be able to share that on a national level,” Sales said.
The tour of the district included classroom visits at an elementary school, middle school and high school. “From the minute I walked in, I felt very much at home in this district,” Ciak said. “I was very impressed with all of the 21st century learning going on in the classrooms. Students were fully emerged in learning and using high-level analysis.”
At the elementary level, the visit showed the district’s use of technology with its 1:1 computing class and students using the zSpace virtual reality, 3-D computers. Copiague Middle School students demonstrated their earth science and English language arts skills, while science research students at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School presented some of their recent studies.
“In the visit I conducted, I was able to see exactly what public education was built for: addressing the needs of all of its students,” Ciak said. “This district is building its student body up from when they enter kindergarten. That type of planning and culture starts from above with a Board of Education and administration that knows what their students need to be successful.”