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Daring Journalist Visits High School

Daring Journalist Visits High School

Freeport High School’s journalism and AP English students had the exciting opportunity to witness an interview of American participatory adventure journalist and author Jim Clash. Stacey Severn of StarTalk Radio conducted the interview, which took place in front of students in the school’s library.

While answering Ms. Severn’s questions, Mr. Clash shared his experiences as a journalist and writing for Forbes Magazine, where he has engaged in the world’s most daring exploits, including bobsledding with the U.S. Olympic team, piloting a super-boat at 140 MPH, flying to 84,000 feet at Mach 2.6 in a MiG, bull fighting, and climbing the Matterhorn mountain. He informed students that his next adventure will take place in outer space, after purchasing a ticket to fly with Virgin Galactic. 

After the interview, Mr. Clash answered student questions about his journey and provided words of advice on pursuing dreams.

“You guys can do anything you want. I’ve done all these things because I was aggressive, I was motivated but I’m a regular guy,” he said. “I created this dream job and any of you can do the same thing. Pursue your passion and work hard at it and don’t give up. If I can inspire one of you to do something like that, we’ve done our job here.”

District staff and administration presented Mr. Clash with a framed photo thanking him for his visit and then enjoyed lunch and refreshments. 

Newly Elected Trustees

Newly Elected Trustees photo
Congratulations to newly elected Board of Education Trustees Maria Jordan Awalom and Gabriela Castillo.

Freeport Public Schools Voting Results

Freeport Public Schools
2019-20 Voting Results

2019-20 School Budget 
Yes = 986 Passed
No = 293
Board of Education Trustee Election Results 
(Highest Two Candidates Were Elected.) 
Sophia Johnson 212
Maria Jordan Awalom 714 - ELECTED
Tanyria Taylor 423 
Jeremy Impellizeri 507
Gabriela Castillo 659 - ELECTED
Other 5 
Proposition 2: 
Freeport Memorial Library 2019-20 Budget 
Yes = 981 Passed
No =  276
Proposition 3: 
Authorization to Expend Funds from Both the 2009 and 2017 Capital Reserve Funds.
Yes = 1039 Passed
No =  168
Escuelas Públicas de Freeport
2019-20 Resultados de Votación

Presupuesto Escolar 2019-20
Si = 986 Passed
No = 293 

Resultados de las elecciones de la Junta de Educación
(Los candidatos más altos fueron elegidos)

Sophia Johnson 212
Maria Jordan Awalom 714 ELECTED
Tanyria Taylor 423
Jeremy Impellizeri 507 
Gabriela Castillo 659 ELECTED
Other 5

Proposición 2:
Presupuesto de la Biblioteca de Freeport 2019-20 
Si = 981 Passed
No = 276

Proposición 3:
Autorización para utilizar los fondos de los fondos de reserve de capital de 2009 y 2017
Si = 1039 Passed
No = 168

Bayview Students Blast Off Into Outer Space

Bayview Students Blast Off Into Outer Space photo

Bayview school students rocketed into space travel to explore and experience the 1969 Apollo 11 moon landing for its Discovery Day.

Several stations were set up throughout the school that provided hands-on educational exercises. These included astronaut training, mission control, lunar landing collection, lunar maker spacer, a virtual reality coloring experience and a planetarium. In addition, they also ventured to the school’s auditorium to view a clip of the Apollo 11 spaceflight landing on the moon. 

During mission control, students had the amazing opportunity to listen to space sounds and, by using Google Expedition goggles, witness the moon as astronauts did when they landed on the moon.

Students had a blast and were kept engaged throughout the day in this unique learning experience.

Welcome, Benjamin Roberts!

Welcome, Benjamin Roberts photo
The district is proud to announce that Benjamin Roberts has been appointed as the new assistant superintendent for personnel and special projects. The Board of Education appointed Mr. Roberts to this position effective April 27, 2019, following the retirement of Dr. Mary Bediako. Before joining the district, Mr. Roberts served in the Glen Cove Central School District as an elementary principal and in the Shenendehowa Central School District as an elementary principal. 

He holds a master of liberal studies from Stony Brook University, a school district administrator certificate from the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts and a Bachelor of Science in elementary-early secondary education from SUNY Cortland. 

Bayview’s Mock Trial Team Showcases Skills

Bayview’s Mock Trial Team Showcases Skills photo
Bayview’s Mock Trial Team Showcases Skills photo 2
Bayview’s Mock Trial Team Showcases Skills photo 3
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Bayview’s Mock Trial Team Showcases Skills photo 5
Trial was in session at Bayview school, as the fourth grade Mock Trial team hosted a dress rehearsal on May 9 in preparation for its Mock Trial Competition at Suffolk County Community College. The assigned case was the people of the State of New York against Michael Walker.

With a prosecution team and a defense team, each student was assigned different roles of either a lawyer, witness or alternate. With that, they showcased their skills in front of their families and sharpened their roles before the big competition. 

Both Bayview’s prosecution team and defense team contested against other districts, with the prosecution team winning the trial against North Shore Glen Head’s fifth grade defense team.

The judges were very impressed with their performances and look forward to seeing them again next year.

New Visions 2019 Talent Show

New Visions 2019 Talent Show p

New Visions was alive with exciting entertainment for the 2019 New Visions Talent Show.

The annual event features students from kindergarten to fourth grade and is produced by fourth grade teacher Tiffany Grimes and music teacher Crystal Leotaud. This year, the show offered 26 talented acts of dancing, singing and gymnastics, as well as students playing the piano and violin. 




Human Relations Took First Place in Contest

Human Relations Took First Place in Contest photo
Human Relations Took First Place in Contest photo 2
Human Relations Took First Place in Contest photo 3
The FHS Human Relations Club has won first place in the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights National Speak Truth to Power Video Contest High School Category from over 1,000 entries. 

The video was created by Christopher Bastida, president of the Human Relations Club, teacher Mr. Dan Ciamaricone and teacher and club adviser Ms. Pamela Mary Schmidt. Students learned about human rights and became champions of change and social justice while creating the video. In addition, the film was recently showcased at the Tribeca Film Festival.

The development of this video adds to the club’s other initiatives that help raise awareness and advocate the fight against bullying and anti-Semitism. The club also sold bracelets with the phrase created by Holocaust survivor Werner Reich “Be J.U.S.T. a Ripple of Hope.”

To view this outstanding video, click here

Student Places Third in State Contest

Student Places Third in State Contest photo
Student Places Third in State Contest photo 2
Freeport High School sophomore Mia Sorrentino took third place in the New York State Association for Bilingual Education Student Essay Contest. Ms. Michelle Rendon, world languages department teacher, encouraged her students to participate in this valuable writing activity.  

Mia received a medal, a certificate and $50 gift card at the NYSABE’s Awards Luncheon.

For the contest, students from grades 9-12 were tasked to write an essay about the importance of being biliterate based on several questions, including why is being biliterate a valuable asset to our society? What are the advantages of being biliterate for you personally? And how will these skills open new doors and provide opportunities for you as a member of our global society?

The district is very proud of Mia’s accomplishments.

Students go High-tech to Tour Country

Students go High-tech to Tour Countryphoto
Archer school students took a virtual tour of various monuments in the United States using Google Expeditions. 

This innovative virtual reality program allows teachers to guide their class through collections of 360-degree scenes and three-dimensional objects. Using headsets, students traveled anywhere in the universe and immersed themselves in places they may never get the chance to visit. 

Third grade dual language teacher Ms. Danielle Appel and school librarian Ms. Debbie Bergen worked collaboratively to design this lesson to help strengthen questioning and critical thinking skills. 

This exercise was a fascinating way to keep students engaged and visually enhanced the third grade social studies curriculum.

Students Provide Perspective in State Bill

Students Provide Perspective in State Bill photo
Students Provide Perspective in State Bill photo 2
Students Provide Perspective in State Bill photo 3
New York State Senator John Brooks and Legislative Director Francis Palasieski spoke with several ninth grade Freeport High School students to discuss their research on the dangers and potential health implications of vaping. With their ideas in mind, Sen.  Brooks plans to initiate a bill that he will send to the New York State Legislature to help curb the vaping epidemic that is sweeping the nation. Those who joined the discussion included Brenna Igneri, Jillian Igneri, Sameerah Lawal, Kylie Noboa, Karina Rios and Elise Smith, as well as their teachers Dr. George Anagnostopoulos and Mr. Michael Smith.

Their recommendations for the bill included the mandated reporting of underage vaping, colorful nicotine devices to make vape products more identifiable, the regulation of online purchases to prevent underage purchases, the regulation of distribution locations concerning proximity to child-friendly locations, restrictions on the advertising of vape products toward underage target markets with the use of colorful and enticing propaganda, an increase of age limit from 18 to 21 for the purchase of vape products, the regulation of nicotine levels in vape products and e-cigarettes, and the requirement that all vape product labels must fully indicate the dangers of the drugs, including both the addictive dangers and the effects on the teenage brain.  

Brooks expressed to students how impressed he was with their research and suggestions to the bill. “You’ve done a super job with this and came up with a lot of good ideas,” he added. “I think the important thing about this is the industry is going to have a hard time criticizing as it’s coming from you. The fact that this is coming from the students is one more example of your generation’s leadership. I think the senate is going to be impressed with what you’ve done.” 

Brooks will call the bill “The Red Devil Act” and hopes to get it to the Legislature by May 16 to propose as a potential law. This would be a tremendous honor for student participants if the bill passes.  

Fun-Filled Literacy Night

Fun-Filled Literacy Night photo

Atkinson school was packed with nearly 300 students and their families from kindergarten through sixth grade for the districts second annual Literacy Night.

Students from Atkinson, New Visions, Giblyn, Columbus and Bayview Avenue schools participated in a variety of exciting activities that were based on the works of author Kevin Henkes. He has been the district author for the #freeportreads initiative, which kicked off in January.

For the event, participants rotated to different stations in the cafeteria, front hallway, auditorium, gym and a classroom. These hands-on activities included arts and crafts, game shows, and friendship and team building. Students from Freeport High School also performed stories from Kevin Henkes’ books, including “Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse,” “Wemberly Worried,” and “Sheila Rae, the Brave.” In addition, attendees stopped by the information tables to learn more about the district’s summer reading expo.

Dodd Step Team Performs at State Ceremony

Dodd Step Team Performs at State Ceremony photo
The J.W. Dodd Middle School’s step team had the honor of performing at the 2019 New York State Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance Awards Ceremony. 

The squad was invited to perform at NYS AHPERD following their outstanding performance during the school district’s Black History Celebration. The team, led by Nina Sasso, made their debut for the first time this year. They hope to continue their endeavors and look forward to many more years of step. 

Bayview ‘BUGZ’ Musical

Bayview ‘BUGZ’ Musical

First grade students at Bayview were buzzing on the school stage dressed as dragonflies, bumblebees, butterflies and ladybugs for the school’s “BUGZ” musical. Through their melodies and amazing talent, they delivered a wonderful message about acceptance of others.


District Celebrates 10th Annual Peace Walk

peace walk image

The district community continued to put its mission for peace at the forefront, as teachers, administrators, students and their families marched around Freeport High School for the 10th annual Peace Walk. 

“It is up to us to promote tolerance and strive for harmony. We are growing a culture of peace through our commitment and education,” Board trustee Ronald Ellerbe said. “Mindfulness, cooperation, conflict, resolution and respecting others are just a few of the instructional practices that can teach peace and harmony and that are happening in our Freeport community.” 

Mr. Ellerbe added, “We can use our thoughts to become peace. We are peace and peace is our true nature.”

Representatives from New York State, Nassau County and the Village of Freeport were also in attendance to show their support and appreciation for the annual event. With that, they presented the district with citations for its continued efforts to spread peace. Librada Paz, a Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights 2012 Human Rights Award recipient was in attendance as well.

Along with beautiful performances by the Dodd Middle School’s jazz band and members of the Leo F. Giblyn’s chorus, the district dedicated Freeport High School’s Peace Pole as part of the International Peace Pole Project. As a way to commemorate the event’s 10th year, a flock of 10 pigeons were released over the crowd to kick off the walk.


Atkinson Celebrates Jackie Robinson

Atkinson Celebrates Jackie Robinson photo

Fifth grade Dual Language students at Atkinson school honored the memory of American professional baseball player Jackie Robinson by celebrating Jackie Robinson Day. This took place on April 15, as it is the same day Jackie Robinson broke baseball’s color barrier when he made his historic Major League Baseball debut in 1947. Over the past two months, students participated in many reading and writing activities that reflected Jackie’s legacy and commended his life, values, and accomplishments.


Freeport Alumnus, Ford Engineer Gives Career Insight

Freeport Alumnus, Ford Engineer Gives Career Insight

FHS welcomed back Class of 1990 graduate Michael Berhan, an engineering expert at Ford Motor Company, who presented a seminar to students.

The discussion focused on his journey through FHS to his position with Ford. Mr. Berhan provided insight into the variety of careers in engineering and what students can do at the high school level to be proactive in pursuing a career in this field. Just as he did, he encouraged them to take advantage of the many opportunities available at the science department to reach their career goals. He credited a good part of his success to Freeport High School.

Mr. Berhan has been with Ford for the past 20 years and is currently the technical expert at the Powertrain, Gears, and Bearings Division. He received a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Stevens Institute of Technology and went on to earn his master’s degree in mechanical engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. From there, he started his career with Ford Motor Company at their headquarters in Michigan.

This seminar aligned with the district’s emphasis on college and career readiness and STEAM curriculum.

Student Doctors Take Over Archer

Student Doctors Take Over Archer

Archer school kindergartners dressed up as doctors as they participated in a teddy bear clinic.

Sponsored by the Trauma Center at NYU Winthrop Hospital, the clinic is a free injury prevention program for children that covers safety topics on car and helmet safety. In addition, each student brought a teddy bear for the hands-on portion of the activity. They dressed up as doctors wearing gloves, a smock and bouffant caps and then tended to their stuffed animals’ by taping up their “injuries.” 

Throughout the program, students were encouraged to answer four important questions on safety: “Whose job is it to keep our bodies safe?” “What’s the first thing we do when we get in the car? “Where’s the safest place for kids to sit in the car?” and “How do we protect our brains?” They eagerly answered each question and enjoyed the clinic.

New Program Builds Confidence

New Program Builds Confidence photo
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New Program Builds Confidence photo 3
New Visions’ students recently paired up with furry buddies for the school’s new Pup Reading Partners program. In its first year, reading teacher Mrs. Lori Golbert created the initiative in hopes of building confidence and fluency in readers. 

The dogs and puppies are from the Guide Dog Foundation in Smithtown and are brought into the school by Mrs. Toni Pincus, a New Visions retired nurse. After selecting a book, readers sit with their new four-legged friend by their side.

The activity brings joy to students and relaxes the dogs.

Congratulations, Ms. Grimes!

Congratulations, Ms. Grimes photo
New Visions School is excited to announce that teacher Tiffany Grimes was named winner of Long Island’s K98.3 radio station’s Teacher of the Month contest for March. 

Ms. Grimes is a fourth grade teacher and was nominated for always going above and beyond for students inside and outside the classroom. She won the contest by receiving the most votes and was awarded with a stack of 40 passes to the Long Island Aquarium in Riverhead.

Dodd’s First Student Spotlight

spot image

Dodd’s cafeteria was transformed into an intimate performance space, as the student council held their first Student Spotlight.

Organized by student council advisers Ms. Amy Lubin and Ms. Katelyn Salisbury, the show featured a variety of performances including singing, dancing and poetry reading. 

This was a wonderful opportunity for a group of talented students to take the stage in front of more than a hundred audience members who included their peers, parents and teachers.

Additionally, the event raised $500 to be donated to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

Marching Band Receives Instrument Donations

Marching Band Receives Instrument Donations photo
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The district’s music department received a generous donation from the nonprofit organization Toys for Freeport Tots, which presented more than $3,000 in musical instruments to the FHS marching band.

Organization volunteers and its president, Freeport Police Detective Patrick Franzone, visited the high school to personally deliver the instruments, which consisted of two flutes, two clarinets, two soprano saxophones and two tenor saxophones.

Mr. Franzone, an alumnus of FHS, has family members currently enrolled in the district. He has attended many Freeport football games and has always been a great supporter of the Red Devils marching band.

“I want to thank you for always supporting your football team,” Mr. Franzone said to the members of the marching band. “You do a really good job out there and you sound really good. Now, you can sound even better, look even better and maybe add some more people in the band.”

This is the second time the organization has donated to the district’s music department, providing more than $3,000 worth of musical instruments to Atkinson school last year. To show their appreciation, the high school marching band performed “Afterlife” for the volunteers, under the direction of Michael LaSorsa.

Superintendent of School’s Dr. Kishore Kuncham thanked Mr. Franzone and the organization for their continued support and their efforts in donating to the district for a second time.

Students Turned Scientists, Engineers

Students Turned Scientists, Engineers photo

The FHS was buzzing with exciting conversations, as students presented their individual or group projects during the school’s 15th annual science and engineering fair.

Throughout the day, students lined up in front of their poster boards and presented their experiments, research and conclusions to a team of judges, which was comprised of district staff members, college professors and representatives from science-related industries.

Under the direction of science teacher Edward Irwin, students presented their projects in several subject areas, including behavioral and social sciences, biochemistry, chemistry, engineering, medicine and health, and microbiology. 

The fair was a great opportunity for students to demonstrate the exceptional work and research that takes place at FHS.

Student Awarded for Artwork of Peace

Student Awarded for Artwork of Peace photo

New Visions School fourth grade student Laiyla Salome-Diaz was honored at the annual Shanti Fund Peace Artwork Contest Luncheon held at Stonebridge Country Club in Hauppauge for her artwork that depicted peace and reflected the beliefs of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi.

Shanti Fund volunteers work with local schools to inculcate values of peace and nonviolence, as practiced and promoted by world leaders. Dr. Kishore Kuncham, Superintendent of Freeport Schools, reminded the gathering of the importance of practicing nonviolence and being warriors for peace as exemplified by Gandhi. Among other activities, the Shanti Fund encouraged students to depict peace in various facets through drawings. With hundreds of artworks submitted by students from first to 12 grades, only 12 peace posters were selected to be included in the Shanti Fund Peace Art calendar. 

Laiyla won this prestigious award from among all fourth grade students in Nassau and Suffolk counties. Her picture depicted peace in the form of friendship, modeled by New Vision students. Laiyla was also awarded a check for $401 and selflessly donated the check to a good friend in need, who has been her classmate at New Visions since kindergarten.

Laiyla hopes “that this picture shows that anyone can help a friend and offer peace, love, friendship, beauty and help those in need.”

District Highlights Success at Realtors Luncheon

District Highlights Success at Realtors Luncheon photo

The library of the district’s New Visions School was filled with local Freeport real estate agents and district officials for the district’s Realtors Luncheon.

Realtors had an opportunity to engage in deep conversation with district officials to learn about the school district's various achievements, programs and activities.

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kishore Kuncham welcomed the special guests and introduced Freeport Board of Education trustee Ronald Ellerbe, who is also a Freeport realtor. Mr. Ellerbe spoke of his positive experiences with the district and gave realtors insight on the district’s unwavering achievements.

Dr. Kuncham spoke about the district’s success in academics, athletics, music and the arts. He discussed various programs, including the pre-K program, technology and science programs, Adopt-A-Cop program and the district’s wellness/holistic programs. In addition, Dr. Kuncham highlighted the district’s outstanding services provided to students that are English language learners and students with disabilities.

“Freeport Public Schools is proud of the excellent opportunities we provide for our students and their families. For the last few years, we’ve been maintaining an 82-84 percent graduation rate and hopefully that continues to grow,” Dr. Kuncham said. “From September and June, we are making a huge difference in the lives of our students and because of that our students outperform other students in New York State in so many ways.”

Best in Music Education

Best in Music Education photo
The district has once again been named Best Community for Music Education by the National Association of Music Merchants Foundation for 2019. This prestigious distinction recognizes school districts across the nation that demonstrate exceptional commitment and efforts toward maintaining music education as part of the school’s core curriculum.

Freeport’s music department cultivates strong and positive relationships between its students and staff and hosts annual districtwide collaborative events for peace and diversity. The talented music staff, combined with the music curriculum, have led the district and its music students to achieve numerous accolades and honors.

Students in various ensembles have routinely been invited to perform at local, regional and national concerts and competitions and prestigious venues including St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Carnegie Hall, Empire State Building, State Capital, All-Eastern Select concert, Freeport Village events, and Nassau County Legislative events.

Dr. Kuncham, Superintendent of Schools, said this distinction is a great accomplishment that promotes the growth and interest in programs, as the district continues to achieve the highest standards for young musicians. “Freeport Public Schools affords our students the best opportunities available and strongly supports the music program for our students. We are amazed by their stellar performances and their commitment to the arts.” 

Director of Arts and Community Relations Ruth Breidenbach said, “The contributions of faculty, students, parents and community members are tremendous,” she said. “Our family approach provides a safe, nurturing learning environment that allows for numerous opportunities to create, perform, connect and reflect. Our music events unite and embrace a diverse community that respects and values music education. Our students contribute to the community by participating in many opportunities to give service throughout their school careers through the wide access to programming.”

Select Chorale Performs at Prestigious Conference

Select Chorale Performs at Prestigious Conference photo
Select Chorale Performs at Prestigious Conference photo 2
The high school Select Chorale had the honor of performing at the 2019 NAfME All-Eastern Division Conference in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 

This is the first time in Freeport history that Select Chorale has been invited to perform at this prestigious conference. Under the direction of Choral Director Monique Retzlaff, Select Chorale submitted an unedited live recording in June 2018 of three contrasting selections illustrating a wide musical variety that have been performed during the current school year. For that, Freeport was selected out of more than 170 entries throughout the country. 

The district is proud of this accomplishment and congratulates the students on their outstanding efforts. 

BOE Recognizes Winter Athletes

BOE Recognizes Winter Athletes photo
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BOE Recognizes Winter Athletes photo 3
The district’s Board of Education members recognized the outstanding efforts of high school student-athletes after having a successful run this winter season. 

Recognitions took place during the April 10 meeting, where student-athletes in cheerleading, boys and girls winter track and wrestling were honored by their coaches. Each coach spoke of the hard work, dedication and achievements these students accomplished throughout the season. 

The district congratulates all winter student-athletes on their efforts this year. 

Robotics Visits Bayview School

Robotics Visits Bayview School photo

The Freeport High School Robotics Club visited Bayview Avenue for STEM Night, where high school students shared exciting aspects of the club with the younger class. Under the direction of teacher Kevin Harrison, robotics members discussed the purpose of the club, the competition requirements and how the robots operate. After that, Bayview students were given the opportunity to operate the robots themselves.

Celebrating 10th Annual Night of Jazz

Celebrating 10th Annual Night of Jazz photo

The sounds of blues, jazz and funk emanated from the Freeport High School on April 11, as students from the high school, J.W. Dodd Middle School, and Caroline G. Atkinson Intermediate School showcased their talents for the district’s 10th Annual Night of Jazz.

Students were led by their talented conductors, with Mr. Christian Roder directing the Atkinson Jazz Ensemble, Mr. Adam Rubin directing the Dodd Jazz Ensemble and Mr. Michael LaSorsa directing the high school Jazz Ensemble. The night was a wonderful way for students to showcase their creativity and musical talents within each school.


Students Inspired by Visit from Nelson Mandela’s Grandson

Students Inspired by Visit from Nelson Mandela’s Grandson photo

Giblyn Elementary School hosted a memorable visit from Ndaba Mandela, grandson of Nelson Mandela on Thursday, April 11. Mr. Mandela was accompanied by Assemblywoman Taylor Raynor. To welcome him to Freeport, the students sang and the Giblyn step team wowed everyone with their amazing performance. Students also read quotes from Nelson Mandela. Mr. Mandela is an author, mentor, spokesperson, entrepreneur, and political consultant born in Soweto, South Africa. He shared inspirational stories from his youth along with wise advice for the future of our students.

Student Participates in Prestigious County Competition

Freeport High School junior and AP Calculus student Ismael Jimenez experienced academic success after participating in the annual New York State Mathematics League competition at Middletown High School. 

Jimenez was selected as an All-Star and was eligible to compete with the Nassau County Mathletes. The Nassau County teams competed against several teams from all over the state including New York City. 

Freeport High School math teachers Joseph D'Agostino and Speros Vartelatos, who run the Mathletes program at the high school, accompanied Jimenez and the All-Star team to Middletown. The Nassau County All-Star teams did well and placed in the top three in both divisions they participated in.

The district congratulations Jimenez and the rest of the Nassau County All-Star Mathlete Teams for their accomplishment in the competition.

Social Workers Honored by County

The Nassau County Theodore Roosevelt Executive and Legislative Building was lit with the color teal, as three Freeport School District social workers were honored by County Legislator Debra Mulé for National Professional Social Work Month. Alicia Brenneis, Cindy Misrock and Mariella Echegaray Ryan were honored for their dedication and service that has left positive impacts on Freeport students.

Ms. Brenneis has been a social worker in the Freeport School District since 2005 and has provided counseling and support for students, families and the staff. Currently working at Freeport High School, Ms. Brenneis is very involved and goes above and beyond to ensure that the needs of student mental health are being cared for appropriately. She is in charge of the mentoring programs for students and is involved in after-school groups to assist at-risk students. Ms. Brenneis brings informational assemblies to the students on physical and mental health topics and is able to provide families with the assistance they need to obtain vital services. She is a valued member of the Committee on Special Education and the Freeport High School Pupil Personnel Services team.

Ms. Misrock has been a social worker in the Freeport School District since 1990 and currently works in the Bayview Avenue School. Along with counseling individual and small groups of students and assisting students in crisis, Ms. Misrock also works in the classrooms to provide students with lessons on social emotional learning and mental health. She serves as a facilitator for the social work department and has been instrumental in the Adopt-a-Cop and Hooked on Firefighters programs. She is the mental health coordinator for the Primary Project program, which targets and assists kindergarten and first-grade students at risk for school anxiety. In addition, Ms. Misrock organizes assemblies with a focus on antidrug awareness and physical safety for children. She also runs the after-school Peace Jam Club. She is an important member of the Committee on Special Education and assists parents in accessing services to navigate the Department of Social Services and health systems. 

Ms. Ryan has been an exemplary bilingual social worker in the Freeport School District for 10 years and currently works at Caroline G. Atkinson School. Ms. Ryan has been an amazing support for students, parents and staff. With that, she has been especially helpful to parents in accessing services, being the driving force behind the Grupo de Padres, which provides Spanish speaking families with instructional information and community resources on a monthly basis. In addition to providing individual and group counseling, Ms. Ryan works in the classrooms providing social-emotional learning lessons and antibullying messages. She also runs after-school programs during the school year and during the summer and has been very instrumental in the success of the Liberty Partnership program in connection with Nassau Community College.

The district is proud of the hard work and dedication these employees demonstrate every day to benefit all students, parents and the community. 

High School Hosts College and Career Day

High School Hosts College and Career Day photo

Freeport High School students received visits from a variety of guest speakers during the school’s College and Career Day event.

Career professionals from fields of medicine, animal care, law enforcement, culinary arts, engineering and auto mechanics, along with representatives from several colleges including Adelphi University, Five Towns College, Franklin Pierce University, Kings College, Lynn University, Sacred Heart University and University of New England were stationed throughout the school. Guest speakers provided students with information on specific career paths through demonstrations and presentations. Students gained valuable insight on the education requirements, job skills needed, and what a typical work day entails.

The purpose of this informative and engaging event was to inspire students to explore various career interests as they prepare for their future. 

Students Visit New York State Capitol

Students Visit New York State Capitol photo
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Students Visit New York State Capitol photo 3
Students and teachers from Freeport High School and Dodd Middle School went to Albany to meet with New York State senators Todd Kaminsky and John Brooks and assemblywomen Judy Griffin and Taylor Raynor. During their visit at the capitol, Assemblyman Phil Ramos gave them a tour of the assembly and explained the workings of the assembly.  

Ladies of Dodd Donate Bags to Cause

Ladies of Dodd Donate Bags to Cause photo

Ladies of Dodd members at the Dodd Middle School recently boarded a school bus filled with gently used handbags that were packed with necessities, toiletries, cosmetics and more for the “Bags of Love” campaign. With the bus fully loaded, the students headed to the Bethany House of Roosevelt to donate the bags.

The 15 students had been collecting and packing 35 handbags since February, while Dodd parents and staff also donated generously to the cause.

"Even when all the items and goodies are gone, they still have a beautiful handbag to carry to make them feel confident throughout the day,” Ladies of Dodd president Nia Hall said. “We hope that they enjoy their donation, because it was packed with love."

The Ladies of Dodd is an organization for girls that promotes sisterhood, self-esteem and community service. It was founded in 2005 by Ms. Vashti Burke and Mrs. Gisselle Campbell-Ham and is still very active today.

Dodd Inducts 93 Students into NJHS

Dodd Inducts 93 Students into NJHS

J.W. Dodd Middle School’s National Junior Honor Society advisor Ms. Felice Niland led 93 students into the gym to be inducted into the National Junior Honor Society.

To qualify for induction into this prestigious national organization, the eighth-grade students were required to maintain an 85% average, complete an application including an essay, complete ten hours of community service and obtain two letters of recommendation. Many of the students completed above and beyond the ten hours required for the community service portion. 

In addition, the students hosted a fundraiser for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and raised $1,500 to fund research for childhood cancers. Students received a NJHS pin and recited the NJHS pledge during their induction. 

With close to 400 people in the gym, including teachers, parents and friends, a round of applause was given to the newest members of the society. The PTA donated two beautiful cakes, while students brought in an abundance of refreshments, which were served by the Ladies of Dodd.

Dodd Teacher Presents at World Conference

Dodd Middle School’s language teacher Ms. Neda Movallali presented at the New York State Association of World Language Administrators World Conference at Hofstra University. Ms. Movallali presented her expertise on differentiated instruction in middle school French and Spanish classrooms at the conference.

Mentors on a Mission


Caroline G. Atkinson Intermediate School’s "Mentors on a Mission" hosted the Freeport Headstart students, where fifth-graders were paired up with the preschoolers to complete an activity about polygons.

Students listened to the story “The Greedy Triangle,” by Marilyn Burns, and followed the adventures of the triangle on digital geoboards. After that, they created lift-the-flap books to highlight characteristics of the polygons they chose. 

The students ate lunch together and everyone had a blast. Ms. Jackson and Mr. Wall are hoping to team up with the young scholars again before the end of the school year.  



Students Took Audiences ‘Under the Sea’

Students Took Audiences ‘Under the Sea’

Freeport High School students made a splash this weekend with the school’s captivating production of “The Little Mermaid.” The production is an adaptation of the Broadway musical that’s based on the classic 1989 Disney film.

The school kicked off the musical weekend with its dress rehearsal on March 28. Directed by Joseph Anthony Smith, the ensemble was led by Leah Hochman (Ariel), Gabriel Alvarado (Prince Eric), Sincere Williams (Sabastian), Hailey Brown (Ursula), and Kyle Jackson (King Triton). 

The talented cast lit up the stage with stunning vocals, singing iconic songs including “Part of Your World,” “Under the Sea,” “Poor Unfortunate Souls,” “Kiss the Girl” and more. 

Students Inspired by Biannual Art Expo

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Freeport High School welcomed a variety of professional artists, alumni and representatives from art colleges, universities and organizations for the schools biannual Art Expo. 

Representatives were stationed throughout the gym, as students moved from exhibit to exhibit to discover artistic beauty and be inspired to pursue their own interests in the arts. Throughout the event, students were provided with information regarding viable careers in the arts, and the pathways to art-centered careers in the modern world.

Celebrating Cultures with International Day


Leo F. Giblyn School’s fourth-grade students participated in performances that honored different cultures for the school’s 2019 International Day Luncheon.

For the celebration, the gymnasium was adorned with colorful student-made decorations that reflected different cultures from around the world. The theme this year was a quote by Mother Teresa, “I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” To expand on this theme, several students delivered speeches about what the quote meant to them. 

In addition, students sang cultural songs and the step team delivered a powerful and energetic performance. Students and staff also enjoyed a multicultural feast that was donated by various local restaurants and Giblyn families.

The Mary Johnson International Day Award was given to Susan Wandzilak. Each year, this award is presented to a member of the Giblyn staff who embodies the characteristics of Mary Johnson, a retired Giblyn teacher who went above and beyond in promoting, cultivating and celebrating diversity. 

Exploring Forces and Motion Through Video Conference

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Danielle Appel and Josephine Velez’s third-grade dual-language class at Archer Street School participated in an exciting, hands-on video conference with science instructors from the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. The focus of the lesson was on forces and motion, where the classroom was converted into a high-action lab ruled by the laws of motion.

Forces and motion can be difficult concepts to describe, but they were easily observed and understood when the students used them in real-life situations. Through hands-on experiments and observations, students explored gravity, inertia, Newton’s three laws of motion, friction, acceleration, velocity and how virtual field trips can be interactive. 


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