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Walter G. O'Connell Copiague High School

 
1100 Dixon Avenue
Copiague, New York 11726
(631) 842-4010
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Principal:
Joseph M. Agosta
Assistant Principals: Tamika Eason, Jonathan Cutolo, Bradley Reminick

Hours: 7:40 a.m. to 2:23 p.m.
Students: 1,600
Faculty: 131

 

 

The educational program at Walter G. O'Connell Copiague High School is designed to meet the needs of every student through a unique variety of course offerings and support programs. The diversity of the school's student population enriches all who enter its doors and is one of the school community's greatest strengths. The faculty and staff of Walter G. O'Connell Copiague High School believe that a student's high school education is the most important four years of a student's life.

The school serves approximately 1,600 students in grades nine through twelve. Through outstanding academic opportunities, support programs, and counseling, each student is constantly encouraged to reach his/her full potential. Walter G. O'Connell Copiague High School has instituted a successful all-Regents program, an in-school and after-school remediation program, Advanced Placement courses in all disciplines, and offers a wide variety of elective courses such as drama, sports and entertainment marketing, and criminal justice.

Current News

Class of 2017 Celebrates Final Chapter

Class of 2017 Celebrates Final Chapter Photo

Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School celebrated the 58th annual commencement exercises on June 22 as the Class of 2017 was honored at their graduation ceremony.

As administrators, Board of Education members, faculty and invited family and friends watched, the Class of 2017 marched on to the football field to “Pomp and Circumstance” played by the concert band and directed by Eric Dobmeier.

Board of Education President Brian Sales addressed the graduates and urged them to have the right attitude and make the right choices moving forward. “Be good listeners; truly listen and don’t just hear,” he said. “Embrace different points of view. Always be a lifelong learner. Even with all knowledge you may amass over time, there is no substitute for good common sense.”

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kathleen Bannon wished the students all the best in their future endeavors. “Each of you have made a positive imprint at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School,” she said. “This is far from being the end – it’s the beginning of all of your tomorrows. I have taken great pride in watching each of you grow into the fine young people you are today.”

Class of 2017 salutatorian Mikayla Angel spoke to her classmates about expectations. Not only did she deliver her speech in English, she also recited it in Spanish as well. “This is the time to make your own expectations,” she said. “You now decide whether you will challenge yourself or remain the same; that’s up to you. You control your expectations. You control how you deal with the doubt of others. I implore you to have hope and remember to stand up for yourself. My legendary kings and queens of ’17, you are unstoppable.”

Valedictorian Tomasz Solecki addressed the Class of 2017 and challenged them to be the change they want to see in this world. “If all people work together in harmony, we as a society can accomplish unimaginable feats,” he said. “It’s you, the people who have the ability to change things for the better. You the people have the power to create happiness. You the people have the power to create a better world for everyone, not just for yourselves. You have the power to make this life free and adventurous. Let not class, religion, race, ethnicity nor gender divide us. If we all live by that motto and offer helping hands to the community with even little acts of kindness, we can truly make this world a better place for all.”

Principal Joseph Agosta spoke to the students about their journey to graduation and the path that lies ahead. “In the future, I have great confidence in your abilities,” he said. “It’s an honor for me to know that I have been a part of your final year as high school students. As you move on in life, remember the values, pride and sense of community that each member of the Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School staff has worked so hard to provide. I have had the distinct privilege of seeing many of you enter your first year of kindergarten and now I have the honor of granting you your high school diploma.”

Senior class president Lyndsey Wilson presented the Class of 2017 gift – a donation to the incoming freshman class – to Assistant Principal Bradley Reminick. Mr. Reminick and Assistant Principal Jonathan Cutolo then called the names of each member of the Class of 2017, where Dr. Bannon and Mr. Agosta presented them with their diplomas.

Prior to turning their tassels and tossing their caps high in the air, the Class of 2017 received a final message from Sen. Chuck Schumer. He encouraged the students to live their lives to the fullest, and always follow their dreams. Following the cap toss and the cheering of the crowds, the Class of 2017 marched off the field to “Chorale and March.”     





Varsity Club Connects with Bubble Soccer

Varsity Club Connects with Bubble Soccer Photo
Varsity Club Connects with Bubble Soccer Photo 2
Members of the Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School Varsity Club took a trip to Long Island Bubble Soccer in Oceanside on May 31. Bubble soccer is a mix of soccer and bumper cars. The Varsity Club student-athletes connected with their fellow club members while having fun playing the game. 

Biology Students Take Technology to the Next Level

Biology Students Take Technology to the Next Level Photo
As part of their final exam, Advanced Placement biology students at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School were tasked with researching and presenting on different current biotechnologies. 

In addition to a PowerPoint presentation, students used virtual reality zSpace computers to design images of different technologies. After the design phase was complete, students printed models of their images using a 3-D printer. 

Some of the 3-D items generated included a heart, DNA strands, kidneys, a nose and teeth, which are all representative of biotechnologies such as cloning, heart transplants, tissue engineering, embryonic and adult stem cell research. 

Senior-Athletes Commit to College Sports

Senior-Athletes Commit to College Sports Photo
Senior-Athletes Commit to College Sports Photo 2
The district recognized 11 senior student-athletes who have committed to play their respective sports in college next year.

The following Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School students were recognized: Tyrone Browne (football, SUNY Brockport); Cris Castillo (field hockey, Manhattanville College); Kory Corkins (football, Delaware Valley University); Rigaud Destime (basketball, College of Staten Island); Ashley Hudson (lacrosse, Western New England University); Deanna Iannotta (lacrosse, Farmingdale State College); Maraya Jones (soccer, College of Staten Island); Jabbar Morris (football, Hobart College); Brionna Silva (volleyball, St. Joseph’s College); Alicja Zaborowska (volleyball, Nassau Community College); and Anna Zaborowska (basketball, Mercy College).


Spring Sports All-Stars

Spring Sports All-Stars Photo
Congratulations to the student-athletes who were awarded for their play on the field and in the classroom during the spring 2017 sports season. For a full list of winners, click here.

District Celebrates Retirees, Newly Tenured teachers

District Celebrates Retirees, Newly Tenured teachers photo

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.  

Twenty-Eight Inductees Welcomed into National Honor Society

Twenty-Eight Inductees Welcomed into National Honor Society Photo

Twenty-eight new members of the Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School’s Isabella Driscoll Chapter of the National Honor Society were inducted in a ceremony held in the school’s auditorium on June 1.

Members of the National Honor Society each held candles as they entered the ceremony. Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kathleen Bannon offered welcoming remarks to the board of education members, administrators, family, friends and community members in attendance and congratulated the new inductees for their hard work, community involvement and academic excellence in achieving membership into the National Honor Society.

After National Honor Society advisers Allison Weller and Clare Nugent lit the first candle of knowledge, National Honor Society officers each explained the four main pillars of scholarship, leadership, service and character before lighting their respective candles. 

National Honor Society members chose social studies chairperson Michelle Penyy as guest speaker for the ceremony. Ms. Penyy spoke about her many travel experiences and lessons she had learned along the way with each new trip. “As National Honor Society members, you are all stewards of our past and your knowledge and appreciation of it will guarantee all of us a better future. Each of you has taught me and your fellow students how to be more confident, flexible, humble, appreciative and kind,” Ms. Penyy said. “The fact that you are being recognized for your service, scholarship, character and leadership demonstrates that you possess the very characteristics needed to be global citizens. Think of your membership into the National Honor Society as your passport.”

Principal Joseph Agosta offered words of encouragement before reading the oath for new members. The district congratulates the following inductees: senior Ona Kean; juniors Ashley Collado, Brittany Faustin, Ayana Fields, Sierra Lenee Gaul, Isabella Gilbert, Jordy Hernandez-Rivera, Kyria Moore, Rianna Rivera and Davina Smith; sophomores Jackson Bright, Aleksandra Bugajczyk, Ajhani Carroll, Mercy Gomez Herrera, Jeanine Guelee, Melinda Harris, James Holland, Emily Korba, Faith McCombs, Lacy McIntyre, Gabriela Ordonez, Jimmy Padilla-Ortez, Kriyal Patel, Kembalee Rolle, Abigail Romero, Owen Rosenberg, Samantha Sattler and Deana Simon. 



Key Club Members Honored at Kiwanis Breakfast

Key Club Members Honored at Kiwanis Breakfast Photo

Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School students received accolades and scholarships from the Kiwanis Club of Copiague during their annual breakfast on May 31.

Members of the Key Club were recognized with scholarships presented by Kiwanis Club president elect Phil Guerra. The Anthony Iannotta Scholarship of $1,000 was awarded to Lyndsey Wilson. The Robert McIntosh Scholarship was presented to Jackalyn Gonzalez and Sofie Wilson won the Warren Gumbs Scholarship, both for $500. Additionally, six Key Club members were awarded $250 scholarships each: Ashley Burgos, Jenna Langan, Nicole Mikolajczak, Amorelle Penick, Tiana Roe and Nilsu Yildiz. 

Key Club president Alexandra Saczawa and vice president Joshua Taveras spoke about the many volunteer activities in which the club participated this year. Sophie Bright, president of the Middle School Builders Club, the junior version of the Key Club, also shared some of the various community service activities completed this year. 

The cast of the recent production of “The Little Mermaid” treated the audience to a special performance of some of the favorite hits from the show. 




Empowering Words During Women’s Breakfast

Empowering Words During Women’s Breakfast Photo
Empowering Words During Women’s Breakfast Photo 2
Empowering Words During Women’s Breakfast Photo 3
The Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School Industry Advisory Board held a women’s power breakfast on May 24 featuring district administrators, local businesswomen and community leaders along with Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School students.

Assistant Principal Tamika Eason offered opening remarks, encouraging students to find their voice. “Ask yourself how you want to be perceived,” she said. “Women are faced with many different challenges in the workplace; the playing field isn’t always equal. Know your craft, identify your passion and goals and turn that interest into your professional goals.”

District administrators and community leaders shared their career experiences and obstacles with students in an effort to prepare them as they enter the workforce. Each shared stories of how they navigated through their career paths. Attendees included: Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kathleen Bannon; science chairperson Renee Locker; Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School teachers Linda Aims, Allie Stanton and Allison Stritzl; Lasheca Lewis (New York State Assembly); Danika Hall (Teachers Federal Credit Union); Linda Penuela Rannazzisi (Bethpage Federal Credit Union); Melissa Firmes (Kids Need More); Sharon Fattaruso (Copiague Chamber of Commerce); Stacy Screiber (Professional Physical Therapy); and Tammie William (New York State Senate). 

Students had the opportunity to ask questions and seek advice from the professional attendees. The following Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School students participated in the breakfast: Katherine Abreue, Sully DeLaCruz Brito, Alexandra Bugajczyk, Jennifer Diaz, Catherine Gonzalez, Jeanine Gulee, Cameren Jackson, Carla Jackson, Kriyal Patel, Tiana Roe and Sarah St. Jean. 

Student-Athletes Honored for Dedication On and Off the Field

Student-Athletes Honored for Dedication On and Off the Field Photo

The Copiague School District honored its spring student-athletes during its annual Sports Awards dinner at the Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School on May 23. District administrators, board of education members, friends and family gathered to honor the athletes in girls track, girls lacrosse, boys track, boys lacrosse, softball and baseball.

As coaches recognized each of the student-athletes for their contributions throughout the season, individual awards were given to most improved players, most valuable players and coach’s award for each team. Three special memorial awards were presented to student-athletes for boys lacrosse and baseball. The Jared J. Pennington Memorial Lacrosse Award was given to Noble Matubber, Tquan Wint was the recipient of the Sean Ryan Noonan Memorial Lacrosse Award and Joshua Lester received the Daniel O’Connell Memorial Baseball Award.

The Section XI Gold Key Award, the highest Section XI honor that an athlete can receive, is awarded to student-athletes who letter in eight junior varsity or varsity seasons in grades 10-12. This year’s recipients were Mikayla Angel (field hockey, winter track, spring track), Cris Castillo (field hockey, winter track, lacrosse), Maya Jones (soccer, winter track, spring track, softball), Amira Kemp (tennis, winter track, spring track), Vincent Ruggiero (soccer, bowling, baseball), Matthew Spadone (soccer, bowling, lacrosse), Sean Walsh (soccer, football, bowling, lacrosse) and Anna Zaborowska (volleyball, basketball, lacrosse).

The Golden Eagle Award is given to the student on each team who had the highest cumulative grade point average for the season. For the spring season, Mikayla Angel (girls track), Kelly Cheung (girls lacrosse), Noble Matubber (boys lacrosse), Peter Milillo (baseball), Christopher Canenguez (boys track) and Sofie Wilson (softball) received the Golden Eagle.

BACCA Nominations Plentiful for Student-Actors

BACCA Nominations Plentiful for Student-Actors Photo
The Babylon Citizens Council on the Arts and the Teen Theatre Committee has nominated student-actors from Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School for Teen Theatre Awards for their performances this year. Winners will be announced at the June 9 ceremony at Lindenhurst High School.

The district congratulates the following actors and support staff on their nominations: Kishaar Hodge – Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Musical; Crystal Betz – Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Musical; Amy Rodriguez – Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical; Jade Dickenson – Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Play; and Amorelle Penick – Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Play.

Other nominations include: Outstanding Production Value of a Musical; Outstanding Ensemble of a Musical; Outstanding Stage Crew of a Musical; Outstanding Musical; Outstanding Production Value of a Play; and Outstanding Stage Crew of a Play.
 
From the recent production of “The Little Mermaid,” dance captains Nicholas Favichia, Jenna Langan and Amorelle Penick will be recognized. Future Star awards will be given to Sydney Walsh, Alejandro Claros-Sanchez and Madison Dudley for their performances in “Drama Night.”

The “Teens in Tune” award – given to outstanding pairs and small groups – will be presented to Ladrea Buffaloe, Samantha Sattler, Darley Senat, Taylor Sharpe-Adams, Samantha Sloane and Nilsu Yildiz. The Teen Theatre Committee will honor the Hip Hop Club’s performance of “Taking Back the Music” as a special performance and club members will be recognized with awards.


Key Club Recognized for Service Efforts

Key Club Recognized for Service Efforts Pic
The Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School Key Club was recently presented with an appreciation award from the New York Blood Center for holding three blood drives during the 2016-2017 school year. The Key Club blood drives yielded 169 pints of donated blood.


Artists, Musicians Inducted Into Honor Societies

Artists, Musicians Inducted Into Honor Societies Photo
Artists, Musicians Inducted Into Honor Societies Photo 2
Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School recognized its finest musicians and artists during the third annual Fine Arts Honor Society Induction on May 22. Fourteen students were inducted into the Tri-M Music Honor Society and 14 students were inducted into the National Art Honor Society in front of administrators, board of education members, friends and family.

Jennifer Pierre-Louis, director of fine arts and Tri-M Honor Society advisor, offered opening remarks about the hard work and dedication of the student-musicians who were nominated for induction to both their school and community.

Five points of distinction – scholar, character, leadership, cooperation and service – must be possessed by these students in order to qualify for the Tri-M Music Honor Society as explained by the society’s officers. They must also receive teacher recommendations, maintain a 90 average or above in music courses and an 85 average or above overall.

National Art Honor Society inductees must also receive teacher recommendations, possess a 90 or above average in art classes and submit a piece of artwork, according to Damin Gomes, National Art Honor Society advisor. Each new candidate for induction also adds signs their name to a canvas, adding their personal touch to a piece of art.

Students each received a certificate and pin before reciting the pledge of their respective honor society in unison with their fellow inductees.

The district congratulates the following students inductees: Tri-M Music Honor Society – Kaihya Banks, Ladrea Buffaloe, Ashley Collado, Nelson Flores, Daniel Galeas, Melanie Garcia, Anthony Gonzalez, Shari Jackson, Jaime Kister, Michelle Kumah, Marvin Pineda Lobo, Jonah Ramdas, Allison Reyes and Jake Weiss. National Art Honor Society – Patric Gudel, Spencer Hodges, Liam Mahabir, Faith McCombs, Jacqueline Mendez, Melinda Mercedes, Wendy Moreno Marroquin, Jessica Norwood, Nayeli Pena, Jillian Petroglia, Kailee St. Angelo, Olivia St. George, Yafreycy Taveras and LeeAnna White.

Current Tri-M members played for guests prior to the start of the induction ceremony, and artwork produced by current seniors was on display around the cafeteria.  



National School Boards President Gets Inside Look at Copiague

National School Boards President Gets Inside Look at Copiague Photo

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.”

Student-Researchers Shine at Science Symposium

Student-Researchers Shine at Science Symposium Photo

Celebrating the notable accomplishments of the science students at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School, the district held its third annual 2016-2017 science research symposium on May 18.

District administrators, board of education members, representatives from the Town of Babylon, members of the science department and invited guests gathered to recognize the hard work, determination and perseverance of the students currently enrolled in the independent science research program, the advanced science research program and the introduction to science research program.

“You have all worked a tremendous amount of hours with teachers who have fostered your love of science enough to do this work outside of the classroom,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kathleen Bannon. “Congratulations to all of the recognition you have brought to yourselves and your school for your dedication and perseverance.”

Seven Copiague science research students presented a brief overview of their projects, many of which have garnered numerous awards throughout the school year. Projects were on display for a poster presentation walk following the ceremony, giving attendees an opportunity to speak with the students firsthand about their research.

Each student in the program was presented a certificate by science chairperson Renee Locker in recognition of their accomplishments this school year.

The following students were presented with certificates: Jackson Bright, Tatiana Henry, James Holland, Kriyal Patel, Owen Rosenberg, Osazuwa Eghafona, Marianna Espinoza, Brittany Faustin, Jade Dickenson, Claudia Motley, Brayan Pena, Alexandra Saczawa, Joshua Taveras, Sofie Wilson, Shane Abney, Kiara Bennett, Baron Chen, Vincent Cipriani, Erhumwunse Eghafona, Daniel Galeas, Melanie Garcia, Nicole Hernandez, Gregory Jean-Baptiste, Elijah Johnson, Nolan Johnson, Jade Jones, Austin-Sing Loo, Sheza Mirza, Richelle Modestil, Marwin Pineda Lobo, Blanca Reyes, Jeniffer Romero, Josh Simon, Gianna Torres and Tamara Washington.