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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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Joseph M. Agosta
Assistant Principals: Tamika Eason, Jonathan Cutolo, Bradley Reminick, Jonathan Krawchuk


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.

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Current News

Harvard Club Honors Renée Locker

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Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School School science teacher Renee Locker has been named a Distinguished Teacher of 2020 by the Harvard Club of Long Island.
“This award honors middle and high school teachers who have profoundly influenced their students’ lives,” said Dr. Judith Esterquest, chair of the Distinguished Teacher Selection Committee. “Dedicated teachers like Ms. Locker inspire Long Island students to excel, to become passionate about learning, and to recognize the value of hard work. These teachers devote countless hours to creating better futures for our children.” Ms. Locker will be honored at the Harvard Club of Long Island’s annual University Relations Luncheon later in the year, along with 11 other teachers from across Long Island.
Ms. Locker, who serves as the science chairperson of Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School and coordinates the high school science department and the science research program, has taught in the district for 10 of her 32-year teaching career. Under her leadership, the school’s science research program has progressed from launch to a lauded presence in the scientific community: Copiague is the first of eight schools in the Town of Babylon to produce a Siemens semifinalist, and consistently achieves the highest honors at the Babylon Covanta Science Fair, Long Island Science Congress, Molloy College Science Fair, and comparable awards at the Long Island Science and Engineering Fair.
After earning her bachelor of science degree in chemistry from SUNY Old Westbury and her masters degree from New York Institute of Technology in educational technology, Ms. Locker received a leadership degree from LIU Post. She also holds NYS School District Administrator (SDA) and School Building Administrator (SBA) certificates. 
“She opened an array of doors for me and my future,” said Abigail Romero, freshman at Harvard University and Copiague alumna who nominated Ms. Locker for this award. “Although no longer pursuing science, I remain heavily invested in pursuing research, a love first cultivated in Ms. Locker’s classroom. The hundreds of hours we spent together, in-school, after school, and at science competitions, showed me her robust and indomitable nature.”
“She taught me the patience to craft emails, the courtesy of sending out thank-you’s, the magic that can occur when you ask for help,” Ms. Romero said. “Most importantly, she taught me that nothing is truly impossible if you are willing to put in the time and effort to make it come true.”
Copiague Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kathleen Bannon said, “Renée is well-respected and always willing to assist her students and colleagues. As chairperson of her department, she has grown our science department into an award-winning program, nurtured our young scientists into achieving their full potential, and inspired her fellow staff members. She is truly a distinguished educator, and deserves this honor.”
At the ceremony, the Harvard Club of Long Island will announce the Distinguished Teacher of 2020 who will also receive a scholarship for a “Harvard experience” at the Harvard University campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
This year’s dozen Distinguished Teacher Award winners were nominated by current Harvard undergraduates and then selected by Harvard Club of Long Island board members. 
Ms. Locker is the second Copiague educator to win this award. In 2010, Copiague science teacher Dr. John Young was named a Fellow of the Harvard Club of Long Island and spent his Harvard experience developing curriculum for a high school astronomy course.

Acknowledging Achievements of Winter Athletes

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Honoring the hard work of its student-athletes both on and off the field, Copiague School District held its annual winter sports awards dinner for its varsity athletes at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School on March 10. Sponsored by the Copiague Booster Club, the awards recognize their athletic and academic accomplishments.
Coaches, central office administrators and Copiague School District’s 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), Alfred Barredo (boys bowling), Marvin Pineda Lobo (wrestling), Maya Wilson (girls basketball), Terrance Mason Jr. (boys basketball), Jillian McLaurin (girls track) and Christopher Canenguez (boys track) were recipients of the Golden Eagle awards.

Winter Guard Scores First

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On March 7, the Copiague Winter Guard competed for the first time in nine years at a regional competition in New Jersey. The team took first place in their division (novice) with a score of 74.26. The team is instructed by Randy Nicholson and student leaders are Destiny Delacruz and Josh Archer. 

Showing Off Their Roots During Black History Celebration

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This year’s theme for the Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School Black History Month celebration on Feb. 27 was “Strong Roots, Amazing Achievement.” The event showcased the many talents of the student body and featured performances by the middle school and high school step teams as well as musical selections by the Madrigal Choir and jazz band.

The celebration was hosted by Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School students Sevon Brown, Lanyah Ford and Jonah Ramos, who were introduced to the audience with “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” theme song. The Madrigal Choir presented three musical selections, including “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” “Cameroon Processional” and “Oh Happy Day” with solos by Sevon Brown and Sydney Forbes.  

The Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School and the Copiague Middle School step teams themed their performance “Step Up and Vote.” The jazz bands played two selections, “Low Ride” and “What Is Hip.” “Young Hearts” was performed by Zyliek Jackson, Bianca Joseph and Bridgette Mendoza. Donovan Harris sang “My Strength” and Naroli Cabrera belted out a Beyoncé medley of “Nile” and “Freedom.” Members of the Drama Club performed a dramatic interpretation centered around Harlem. 

To close out the show, students, staff and administrators took to the stage to show off the African American fashions through the years. All proceeds from the Black History Month celebration benefit the security department’s scholarship fund.

Recognizing Top 20 Students in 2020

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Copiague School District recognized and celebrated the accomplishments of its top 20 students in the Class of 2020 with a luncheon on Jan. 24 in the school’s cafeteria. Board of Education members, central administrators, invited faculty members and the students’ family members joined the top 20 students for the event.
Each top 20 student had the opportunity to invite one special teacher from the district who had a positive influence on them. Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School Principal Joseph Agosta welcomed guests and thanked the family members for their support of the top 20 students. “I have a little advice for you as you move forward from here,” he said. “What matters foremost in life is that you be someone special; not sure do something special. To make a difference in the world, you have to be not only a great person but great in what you do and great in who you are. As you move from high school to college and continue your education, I encourage you to challenge yourself to become a great person. Get involved in all that life has to offer. Never be afraid to try something new. Always surround yourself with people who make you want to be a better person and bring out the best in you.”
Mr. Agosta then offered a brief biography of each student, noting their accomplishments, awards and future goals and endeavors for college and their career. Each student was called to the podium to express their gratitude to the teacher who inspired them during their time in Copiague School District. 
The district congratulates the top 20 students (in order beginning with No. 20): Esdras Canales; Patric Gudel; Carol Rodriguez Rodriguez; Nolan Johnson; Gabrielle Diegue; Darlene Ferreira; Destiny Delacruz; Henry Molina; Isabella Galarza; Kiara Bennett; Argeny Tavarez; Erhumwunse Eghafona; Alfred Barredo; Nicole Hernandez; Jarrett David; Allison Reyes; Christopher Canenguez; Naryman Lounici; salutatorian Marvin Pineda Lobo; and valedictorian Melanie Garcia. 

Basketball Coach Receives National Women in Sports Honor

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Copiague School District celebrated National Girls and Women in Sports Day by honoring Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School junior varsity girls basketball coach Kia Wright at the team’s last home game. 
Ms. Wright was a standout athlete during her time in the Copiague School District,  earning a spot as one of the top scorers on Long Island by amassing 2,148 points in her high school career. She was an All-Long Island and All-State player who helped the Eagles win two Long Island titles and a state championship in 2003.

Ms. Wright played at St. John’s University, where she was a four-time Big East player and the only player in school history to score more than 1,500 points and more than 400 assists in a career. After graduating from St. Johns, she competed at the professional ranks for Puerto Rico and Croatia, and in 2015 was inducted into the St. John’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

Ms. Wright has been an assistant coach for the Adelphi Panthers and is currently in her third year as the junior varsity girls basketball head coach for Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School.

Copiague Celebrates Its Counselors

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During the week of Feb. 3-7, Copiague School District celebrated National School Counseling Week to focus attention on the unique contribution of school counselors within the school system. This year’s theme was “School Counselors: Helping Build Better Humans.” National School Counseling Week, sponsored by the American School Counselors Association, highlights the impact school counselors can have in helping students achieve school success and plan for a career.

Copiague’s Robotics Class: Builders and Coders

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Students in the robotics class at Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School are learning how to build and program their own robots. Using vex kits, the students begin the building and basic programming at the start of the school year. As the year progresses, the students integrate the sensors into the robot and code them so they measure degrees of rotation. The robots are programmed to travel a certain distance and eventually, as a culminating activity, go through a labyrinth maze and pick up a ball.

Showcasing Stellar Students

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Honoring the many accomplishments of its students both in and out of the class, Copiague School District’s administrators and Board of Education held a student recognition awards ceremony on Jan. 27.

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kathleen Bannon welcomed the students and their families and congratulated them for being chosen for recognition. “Publicly recognizing excellence is a way of celebrating some of the great successes of the Copiague School District’s programs and, at the same time, enabling us to showcase outstanding role models to our school community.”

After reading a short description of each students’ accomplishments, they were called to the podium to receive their plaque and congratulations from the board of education members. 

The following students were selected for recognition: Deauville Gardens East: Mert Ergal and Josue Mendez; Deauville Gardens West: Maxumis Aguilera, Danika Eldora and Keyon Elliot; Great Neck Road: Andy Andino, Melanie Robertson and Maya Thompson; Susan E. Wiley: Julia Nerkowski, Janiah Staley and Nataly Torrez Gutierrez; Copiague Middle School: Anahi Avila, Christopher Brito, Merary Duran, Richard Fagan Jr. and Elmely Lucas Tejada; and Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School: Jonah Breskin, Yanelith Douglas Armistead, Edgar Feal, Allison Reyes, Donna Rivera and Gabriela Marie Sanchez. 

An Inspirational Read

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Inspiration can take many forms. But for Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School junior Kiran Ahmad, inspiration came from a combination of a book and a teacher who taught her a deeper love for reading.

Admittedly, Ahmad said English isn’t one of her favorite subjects, nor does she have an affinity for reading. That was until she was placed in Mr. Miles’ English class this year. The class recently read J.D. Salinger’s “Catcher in the Rye” and somehow, she just made a connection. “Mr. Miles is very enthusiastic about the book, which kind of made me enthusiastic about reading it,” she said. “And when we started to analyze the book, it really got me thinking about some of the characters.”

It got Ahmad thinking so much so that she decided to travel to Princeton University’s library, on her own, to read some of Salinger’s unpublished works, most notably:” The Ocean Full of Bowling Balls,” the prequel to “Catcher in the Rye.” The short story explains why the book’s main character is the way he is, and since the story won’t be published until 2060, Ahmad wanted to share what she learned with her teacher.

“I started writing an email full of all the details to Mr. Miles immediately after I left the library,” she said. “I wanted to retain everything I could about the story.” The purpose of her journey to Princeton was to share her knowledge with the teacher who inspired her. “Mr. Miles is an inspiration and he always tells me that I inspire him,” she said. “I never even liked to read and he made me fall in love with books. And when he replied to my email about my trip, it just made my day.”

DECA Club Scores at Local Competition

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Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School’s DECA Club participated at the New York State Regional DECA Competition at Suffolk County Community College in Selden. There were more than 1,500 DECA students from various high schools in Suffolk County participating in the competition. The Copiague School District congratulates the following students who were awarded first-place trophies: Jarred David, Lauren David, Carlito Milan, Jonah Ramdas, Allison Reyes, Alyson Ruiz, Oktay Valdiz and Anayah Woods. These students will now attend Fashion Week in Manhattan this April.