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Amityville Senior Achieves Ambassador Status

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Amityville Memorial High School senior Jasmin Lucero has been named a Junior Achievement Ambassador for the 2019-2020 school year. She competed in the 2019 Junior Achievement of New York Student of the Year scholarship program and finished in the top five out of 90 students from Long Island, New York City and the lower Hudson Valley.

Jasmin has been involved with Junior Achievement’s High School Heroes program, in which high school students educate youngsters at the elementary level about community, careers, financial literacy and more. She participated in the program as a sophomore and junior. 

Additionally, she took part in Junior Achievement’s Financial Park program. Jasmin and her fellow leaders facilitated lessons for students at Edmund W. Miles Middle School on topics such as budgeting, career planning, goal setting, saving and investing, taxes and income deductions, and the advantages of disadvantages of credit and debit cards.

Active in student life at Amityville Memorial High School, Jasmin belongs to the Key Club, National Honor Society, Tri-M Music Honor Society and World Language Honor Society. She is also a member of the Warrior Awareness Club, or WAC PAC, participating in its Christmas Magic and Cultural Exchange programs. 

Jasmin was nominated for the Junior Achievement award by her guidance counselor, Ashley Borja, transition coordinator, Karen Gross, and business educator, Dr. Diane Impagliazzo. Her experience, determination to succeed and poise during interviews impressed Junior Achievement’s Executive Board members, who served as judges.  

As an ambassador, she is invited to attend several Junior Achievement events in New York. Jasmin recently addressed more than 100 people at the annual golf tournament fundraiser and she will be a guest at the annual dinner in November, as well as an upcoming Board of Directors meeting. Jasmin also receives a $1,000 award and will be profiled in the organization’s New York newsletter and on its website. 

Veterans Make Connection With Amityville Students

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The district marked Veterans Day by providing students with first-hand accounts of history, as past and present servicemen and women visited Edmund W. Miles Middle School on Nov. 8 and Amityville Memorial High School on Nov. 14 to share their personal experiences.

The middle school welcomed 18 veterans who visited social studies classes throughout the day. They represented all branches of the military and served during different time periods, giving students perspective on several decades worth of world events. Volunteers from the National Junior Honor Society escorted them to the classrooms.

Among the speakers were several members of the school district who have served their country including Board of Education trustee Juan Leon, Administrator for Pupil Personnel Services Peter Paternostro, Assistant Administrator for Pupil Personnel Services Virginia Figueroa, social studies teacher Frank O’Brien and security guard Sikes Reese. Other guests included parents and representatives of local veterans organizations. Many veterans brought in artifacts to share including books, equipment, maps and photos.

“Students were able to hear multiple stories and perspectives about being in the service,” said Leslie Ciliotta, chairwoman for humanities. “We want students to not only show their appreciation for the people who fight for our country and our freedom, but also ask questions and explore a potential career path.”

Veterans also went to social studies classes at the high school. Department Chairwoman Dawn Mizrachi said that 25 men and women met with students to discuss their reasons for joining the armed forces, share stories from their service and talk about post-military life. She explained that by having veterans visit classes, students can establish connections with them and participate in meaningful dialogue about the historical events they have witnessed. 

Additional Veterans Day speakers at the middle school and high school included Loreal Best, Pierre Best, Donna Boyle, Jami Lyn Butto, Bill Coppola, Bill Demakakos, Director of Veterans’ Affairs from Farmingdale State College Eric Farina, Warren Hart, Ed Hayde, Ahad Ikram, Justin Jorgansen, Steven Labate, Nick LaLota, Chris Levi, Gene Murray, Tiffany Paurolo, Dwight Powers, Jason Rosser, Gabrielle Stewart, Mark Suckle, Jonathan Tisk, Chuck Vincuilla and Bill Walden.

 


Amityville, Bayport-Blue Point Students Make Connections

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Lining the path to Amityville Memorial High School’s main entrance, students applauded and offered high-fives as their peers from Bayport-Blue Point High School arrived on Oct. 28. The two schools participated in their longstanding cultural exchange program, in which students spend a day at another Suffolk County high school.

Each of the 30 students from Bayport-Blue Point was paired with an Amityville student, and attended his or her buddy’s classes throughout the day. But first, students from the two schools gathered in the cafeteria for breakfast and icebreaker activities.

Jason McGowan, adviser of the Warrior Awareness Club, commonly known as the WAC PAC, said that the icebreaker activities help the students get to know each other better. In one game, Link it Up, each student found a peer they shared a commonality with, such as the same birthday month or favorite color. After linking arms, they were then given a discussion topic. Another engaging activity was a rock, paper, scissors competition.

As the day concluded, students came together to reflect on the experience in Amityville’s recently refurbished library, followed by a pizza lunch in the cafeteria. Several WAC PAC students also recorded the activities and conducted interviews with the participants to put together a small video documentary on the program.

Amityville senior Jasmin Lucero said she was excited to see the perspective of the Bayport-Blue Point students, who attend high school about 25 miles away. She also said the cultural exchange was a great chance to showcase one of Amityville’s greatest assets – it’s diversity.

“We’re meeting new people and learning more about what’s out there other than our area,” Jasmin said. “We’re expanding our horizons.”

This year’s cultural exchange program was extra special for Mr. McGowan, who welcomed his son, Trey, a Bayport-Blue Point High School student. In November, Amityville will host students from East Islip High School and in the spring Amityville students will visit the two high schools. 


High School Students Make Halloween a Treat

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Children throughout Amityville got a full taste of Halloween on Oct. 29 as the high school was transformed into a place of spooky sights and sweet delights. Amityville Memorial High School hosted its second annual Safe Halloween after school, which was organized by a pair of student organizations, the Key Club and DECA.

Dozens of high school students volunteered their time to welcome and assist children as they traversed the building. As kids walked down the hallway, past the lockers covered in spiderwebs, they could stop at each room to trick or treat. 

Every classroom offered a different activity including bingo, face painting, and a dance party. Children could be wrapped up in the mummy room and color pictures of ghosts, haunted houses and pumpkins in the arts and crafts room. There was also a cupcake-decorating station in the cafeteria and a haunted house in the gymnasium lobby.

Key Club co-presidents Bryan Canales and Jeffrey Reyes-Espinal thanked all of their classmates who prepared the high school for the Safe Halloween event and helped out a the different centers. The Key Club also received several donations, including candy.

“We really appreciate all the work that was put into this,” Bryan said, “and we are really grateful to the people in the community for helping out toward this great cause. It brings Amityville together and gives kids a true Halloween experience.”

Bryan added that it gave him joy to see children in the community having a great time and it brought back his own memories of trick-of-treating as a child.


Money raised from donations was given to the Thirst Project, a non-profit organization that works globally to provide people with clean and safe drinking water.

Social Studies Teachers Present at Regional Conference

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Amityville Memorial High School social studies teachers Margot Howard, Dawn Mizrachi and Matthew Tomasi presented at the 39th annual Long Island Council for Social Studies conference on Oct. 25 in Melville. Social studies teachers from across the state came to participate in various workshops.
 
Ms. Howard, Ms. Mizrachi and Mr. Tomasi led a workshop on how to dissect the Regents constructed response questions (CRQs) for diverse learners. They provided insight on how to teach various skills towards the new Global Regents. Approximately 80 teachers were present to listen to their ideas.
Wednesday, November 20, 2019