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Weekly Sports Update – May 20-24, 2019

Weekly Sports Update – May 20-24, 2019

Baseball Team Advances in Suffolk County Championships

The Connetquot High School baseball team defeated William Floyd High School in the second round of the Suffolk County Championship Tournament by an unblemished score of 5-0 on May 21.   

The No. 3-seeded T-Birds took an early 1-0 lead that the visitors were unable to overcome. Connetquot then scored three additional runs in the third inning, along with their game-ending fifth run in the sixth.  

Matt Brown-Eiring went 3-3 with two RBIs to lead the T-Birds to victory and improve the season record to 16-4. Pitcher Joe Savino was also credited with contributing toward the win, striking out nine batters in seven innings.  

With this victory, Connetquot now advances to the third round of the Suffolk County AA tournament on Friday, May 24, at home, against No. 6 seed Sachem East High School.

Softball Team Advances with 7-1 Win Over Northport

The Connetquot High School girls softball team advanced to the next round of the Suffolk County championships with a convincing 7-1 win over Northport High School. With this win under their belt, coach Goodwin’s T-Birds improved to 13-7, thus declaring themselves as the most successful Connetquot softball team ever!

Connetquot overcame a first inning 1-0 deficit to outscore the visitors 7-0 for the final score of 7-1, and, ultimately, the win. During the game, Emily Hess went 2-3 with a triple and two-run homer in the bottom of the sixth. Additionally, Reilly Murphy had an RBI and a double, while Cailin Hall reached base on all three at-bats. Bella Andres was credited with contributing toward the win, striking out two batters in seven innings.  

The team’s roster currently consists of four eighth graders and no seniors. The T-Birds will play the losing team of the upcoming Smithtown East-West Islip game on May 23. Go T-Birds!

Girls Lacrosse Season Ends in First Round of Playoffs

Connetquot High School girls lacrosse coach Sal Piscatelli is very proud of his T-Birds this season. Despite a series of injuries to several key players, this year’s team persevered and earned a spot in the Suffolk County postseason championship tournament.  

Playing “away” against No. 7 seed Commack High School on May 17, the T-Birds held their own and kept the game close, trailing the home team 3-2 at the half. Unfortunately, Commack outscored the T-Birds despite their valiant team effort, and ended the game by a final score of 7-5.

Connetquot came on strong in the final week of the season, earning a No. 10 seed and a spot in the playoffs. Anna Thornton (2), Hayley Weltner (2) and Jolie Urraro (1) scored for the T-Birds, while goalie Sydney Danseglio was credited with seven saves against Commack. The T-birds finished the year with an even 8-8 record for the season.

Congratulations to the Connetquot High School girls varsity lacrosse team on its outstanding season and determination. The T-Birds graduate five seniors this year – Gina Barbera, Emma McLoughlin, Julia Napolitano, Kelsi Richardson and Jolie Urraro – but expect the returning members of the team to work hard and build on this year’s success.

Connetquot Budget Results:

Connetquot Budget Results: 

The Budget Has Passed. Thank You.
Yes- 1,031
No- 353

Proposition #2 (Bond) Has Passed.
Yes- 850
No- 340

Board Election: 
Jaclyn Napolitano-Furno – 1,111

El presupuesto ha sido aprobado. Gracias.
Sí- 1,031
No- 353

La Proposición # 2 (Bono) ha sido aprobada.
Sí- 850
No- 340

Jaclyn Napolitano-Furno -1,111

Athletic Wall of Fame

Athletic Wall of Fame photo

On May 11, friends, family, coaches and administrators gathered at Connetquot High School to induct 13 former student-athletes and coaches to the high school’s Athletic Wall of Fame. A committee of veteran coaches, teachers and administrators culled the nominations and selected the newest members of the prestigious Connetquot Athletic Wall of Fame.

The district congratulates Christine Bentz Dellavechia (’83/tennis, basketball, volleyball); Kristopher Cuozzo (’85/football, lacrosse); Rob DiLello (’86/football, baseball); Nicolle Dionne (’94/gymnastics); Bob Drzal (basketball coach 1991-2014); Phil Karlstad (’76/community/sports photographer); Sean McCabe (’12/wrestling); Chuck McAuley (athletic director/coach); Nick Monastero (’05/lacrosse, football); Mike Pellegrino (’11/football, lacrosse); Marianne Santoro Loose (’85/track, basketball, volleyball); Philip Stolfa (’95/soccer, lacrosse) and Michele Waring Rocco (’95/track, soccer). 

A delicious brunch was served prior to the inductions, which were handled by Director of Health, Physical Education, Athletics and Recreation Mark Dellecave, along with committee member and assistant football coach Mike Konsevitch. Each inductee was introduced with a “snapshot” of their accomplishments when they wore the school’s red and white colors, and as another token of appreciation, the inductees were presented with a replica of the plaque which has now been added to the Connetquot Athletic Wall of Fame, located outside of the “new” gymnasium.  

Board of Education trustee Mark Warshaw was on hand to congratulate the inductees on behalf of the board and Superintendent of Schools Dr. Lynda G. Adams.

Becoming One with Nature

Becoming One with Nature

Without having to book an international plane ticket, sixth and seventh grade students from Ronkonkoma Middle School recently interacted and learned about a handful of exotic animals, courtesy of Nature Nick of Nature Nick’s Animal Adventures.

For his presentation, Nature Nick brought along a number of animals to showcase including “Bananas” the toucan, “Bubbles” the African Barbary falcon, “Meatloaf” the Flemish giant rabbit, “King Arthur” the Western crowned pigeon, along with “Fabio” the Chilean flamingo. 

In addition to offering rich descriptions detailing the animals’ native land, diet and life cycles, Nature Nick also allowed a handful of volunteers to hold the animals for a few moments, which they clearly enjoyed. 

Outstanding Science Teacher

Outstanding Science Teacher
The district is proud to announce that Connetquot High School earth science and astronomy teacher Stephanie Burns was selected as the 2019 Outstanding High School Science Teacher by the Suffolk Section of the Science Teachers Association of New York State. 

In order to be selected for this prestigious award, Ms. Burns was recommended by Connetquot Central School District Secondary STEM Chairperson Dr. Mary Loesing, and was provided with a number of upstanding letters of recommendation from colleagues and students’ parents alike. 

During her 14-year career within the district, Ms. Burns has brought engaging and interesting lessons into her classroom setting, such as creating authentic earth science lab investigations, and utilizing pictures of impact craters which were captured by the International Space Station.

“Ms. Burns is a warm and caring educator who wants her students to succeed, and does everything she can to engage them in the study of science,” said Dr. Loesing. “Both myself and the district are very proud of Ms. Burns and congratulate her on this well-deserved award.”

For her recognition, Ms. Burns will be receiving a plaque signifying her accomplishment during an awards dinner being held at Villa Lombardi’s of Holbrook on May 29. 

A Bright Future Ahead

A Bright Future Ahead photo
The district congratulates Connetquot High School junior Edward Sollazzo for being presented with a New York State Senate Youth Leadership Recognition Award as sponsored by New York State Senator Phil Boyle.

“February is Youth Leadership Month, making it the perfect time to highlight the New York State Senate’s Youth Leadership Recognition Awards program,” said Senator Boyle. “The program recognizes and honors outstanding students who will become our future leaders.” 

Edward Sollazzo was nominated for this prestigious award by his physical education teacher, Katherine Marasia. She praised his work ethic, mentioned that he is an Advanced Placement student, active in the community, excels in two varsity sports and participates in the school’s symphony orchestra. Edward is also a member of the National Math Honor Society. As part of his Eagle Scout project, he created a Buddy Bench and little free library at Sycamore Avenue Elementary School and donated funds received to the school for upcoming projects.

Supporting the Ride for Life

Supporting the Ride for Life photo

Hundreds of administrators, staff and students from Ronkonkoma Middle School recently lined Peconic Street in Ronkonkoma to show overwhelming support for Chris Pendergast and the ALS Ride for Life participants as they honorably paraded throughout the community.

Under the direction of school guidance counselor Tara Sullivan, who organized the event, the group made their way along the front of the school building as spectators cheered. Students were kind enough to create banners and posters which featured words of encouragement. Bohemia resident Paul Weisman, who also battles ALS on a daily basis, was among the individuals who also walked alongside Mr. Pendergast. 

ALS Ride for life was founded in 1997 by Chris Pendergast and his supporters. Each May, during ALS Awareness Month, those diagnosed with ALS ride their power wheelchairs across Long Island all the way to Manhattan in order to raise awareness of the disease, which currently has no cure. 

Bohemia FD Memorial Day Parade


Gearing Up with Safety Lessons


Second, third and fourth grade students from Cherokee Street Elementary School were recently treated to a thrilling presentation about the importance of maintaining optimal physical health and powerful antibullying techniques courtesy of the Flowstyle BMX Trick Team.

Led by X-Games alumnus and Bicycle Motocross Icon Stephen Cerra, the Flowstyle BMX Trick Team incorporated a series of thrilling flatland stunts with important topics which will assist the students with living a healthy lifestyle on a daily basis. During the exciting program, Mr. Cerra showcased stunts such as “The Hitchhiker,” “Whiplash” and “Hang Five,” and let the students know that these tricks were not mastered overnight, but instead required hours upon hours of practice and hard work. 

In between showcasing their impressive array of stunts, Mr. Cerra stressed the importance of bicycle safety with the students, suggesting that they always wear a helmet when riding, and remain fully aware of their surroundings at all times. Additionally, he taught them the “Three R’s” of antibullying techniques, consisting of “Recognize,” “Refuse” and “Report.” 

At the end of the presentation, students were quizzed on their ability to recall the names of the tricks performed, and were rewarded with signed posters upon answering the correct responses.

An Afternoon at The Arbors

Members of Oakdale-Bohemia Middle School’s National Junior Honor Society, along with chaperone Mary McGonnell, visited the residents of The Arbors Assisted Living at Bohemia this past April. During their time with the residents, the students played bingo and afterwards shared a snack with them.

Dancing Toward Victory

Dancing Toward Victory
Students enrolled in Donna DiNatale’s Italian classes at Oakdale-Bohemia Middle School recently secured the first-place title in the middle school division of the Long Island Language Competition based on their stunning dance routine. For their routine, the students engaged in the traditional Italian folk dance “Tarantella,” which is characterized by its upbeat tempo and a percussive accompaniment by tambourine players. As recognition of their victory, the students were rewarded with medals and certificates signifying their first-place win. 

Breaking Barriers with Superb Writing Skills

Breaking Barriers with Superb Writing Skills photo
The district is thrilled to announce that Bosti Elementary School fifth grade student Michael Ibraham was recently announced a finalist in the Major League Baseball’s “Breaking Barriers: In Sports, In Life” National Essay Contest. 

For his essay, Michael wrote about how he overcame his obstacle of inactivity, as he has since learned of the importance of daily exercise and remaining active. He has made it his goal to reach 10,000 steps on a daily basis in order to maintain optimal physical health. 

Although he wasn’t named a top 10 winner, Michael was selected as a finalist from among 8,000 submissions nationwide, a large accomplishment in itself. For his efforts, Michael was rewarded with a certificate of commendation, along with an official MLB bookmark and pin. 

A Celebration of Ceramics

A Celebration of Ceramics

Connetquot High School students enrolled in Vincent Osmer’s Sculpting and Ceramics classes recently took a field trip to Long Island University, CW Post Campus to engage in the traditional Japanese style of ceramics known as “Raku.” During their visit, the 18 students were busy participating in the Raku process, which included glazing their pieces, loading the kilns, prepping the fire pit and cleaning their work afterward. Additionally, the students were granted the opportunity to speak with artist and professor Frank Olt who talked about ceramics and working in a studio environment at the collegiate-level.

Discussing Government Roles

Discussing Government Roles
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In coordination with their recent social studies lessons, Suffolk County Legislator William J. Lindsay III recently paid the third grade students of Idle Hour Elementary School a visit to discuss the importance of voting and what it’s like to work within the New York State government. 

To begin his presentation, the students were asked what the three branches of government consisted of, to which they correctly answered by stating judicial, legislative and executive. 

During the course of his visit, students learned of the multistep process which is required to pass laws, and took part in a fun activity – which choice they would prefer: no school on Friday or no homework during the week. Prior to making their decision, the students debated on important pros and cons of both sides, and ultimately came to a respectful conclusion that they would prefer there be no homework issued, alongside a full, five-day week of school.

Enhancing STEM Education

Enhancing STEM Education
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The district would like to congratulate Patrick Brennan, Idle Hour and Sycamore Avenue elementary schools’ computer science and engineering specialist, for winning the 2019 TangerKIDS Grant, as he received a check in the amount of $1,800 to fund future STEM-based endeavors for the district’s students.

“It is wonderful and yet not surprising that Tanger Outlets awarded Mr. Brennan this grant; his love for teaching, paired with his knowledge of engineering and computer science is evident through all his work in and out of the classroom,” said Connetquot Central School District Elementary STEM Chairperson Bethanie Rizzo. “Mr. Brennan is part of an amazing team of computer science specialists who provide these innovative learning experiences to students grades K-5.”

According to Mrs. Rizzo, the funds from Mr. Brennan’s awarded check are going to be used toward purchasing Ozobot Evos and Bee Bots, which will further enhance the students’ knowledge of computer programming and coding. 

The TangerKIDS Grants program is designed to assist schools in Tanger Outlet Center’s primary markets by providing grants for special projects and needed programs or equipment. Grants can also support groups within the school, including fine arts, music or athletic programs. 

Magnificent Murals

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Student-artists enrolled in Danielle DePalma’s art classes at Oakdale-Bohemia Middle School recently applied their artistic talents to create two beautiful murals which now reside in the school’s hallway and library. Students Zohayr Adnan, Isabella Pusateri and Leah Strauss used some of Brazilian artist Romero Britto’s popular works such as “Mona Cat” as inspiration and then created their own representations of his pieces so that they could be admired by all. 

Making Connections to Literacy

Making Connections to Literacy
Fourth and fifth grade students from Helen B. Duffield Elementary School recently engaged in a Skype session with the author of the “I Survived” series, Lauren Tarshis. Students from both Karen Pitka’s and Stephanie Russo’s classes enthusiastically led a question and answer session with the author after several students wrote letters to her, citing her as their favorite author. The “I Survived” series tells tales of fiction from the viewpoint of children who witnessed historical events such as the destruction of Pompeii, the American Revolution and Hurricane Katrina. 


Fashion Forward Students

Fashion Forward Students photo
Students enrolled in Pamela Carey’s fashion marketing class at Connetquot High School recently had the privilege of working alongside The Fashion Foundation founder Amanda Munz for a fun and educational marketing experience.

For a large majority of the morning into the early afternoon, the school store was transformed into a “pop-up shop” consisting of designer clothing, jewelry, handbags and other garments which were readily available for purchase by staff and students alike. Prior to setting up the shop with assistance from Ms. Munz, the fashion marketing students took a trip to The Fashion Foundation’s warehouse located in Farmingdale to gain some firsthand tips about the fashion world and how to become a successful entrepreneur. With these refined skills on hand, the students were able to apply their knowledge toward creating a stunning store which they advertised together as a team.  

By the end of the day, it was reported that a whopping $865 worth of merchandise was sold. Proceeds will go to the less fortunate students in the New York City area. Due to the efforts of The Fashion Foundation, more than 6,000 students have been provided with new school supplies and equipment toward brightening their school days.

Ms. Munz created The Fashion Foundation approximately five years ago after graduating from the Fashion Institute of Technology, located in the heart of Manhattan. Since then, it has been her life’s work to sell donated items of clothing and use the profit to benefit underprivileged schools and their student bodies.  

2019 Capital Project Newsletter


Powerful Poetry

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Despite only being a sixth grade student at Ronkonkoma Middle School, Cristian Martinez has already garnered an impressive number of accolades due to his profound work in the world of poetry.

Most recently, Cristian was awarded the title of Grand Champion at the Walt Whitman Student Poetry Contest of 2019 for his poem a “A Glimpse of Tomorrow” out of a total of 2,500 other entries. Due to his successes, his poem will be published in the anthology, “Whitman’s Apprentice Anthology.”

He will also be published in the “Poets to Come Anthology” for his original work “Unanswered Questions,” along with two poems in the “Leaves for Me Anthology” for his other works “The Glory” and “My Mentor Robert,” and the Suffolk County Poetry Review for his poem, “Winter.”

In addition to his multiple publications, he won first place for his poem, “Clouds Have Secrets” in the Princess Ronkonkoma 2019 Poetry Contest.

Cristian was also a featured poet at his first poetry reading which was held at the Barnes & Noble in Lake Grove in April. He shared that this experience was amazing because he was able to read several poems on different themes that he is concerned about.


Supporting Autism Awareness

Supporting Autism Awareness photo

As a culminating activity for National Autism Awareness Month, Edward J. Bosti Elementary School recently hosted their inaugural “Bubbles for Autism” event, as hundreds of students and staff members from the school community gathered in the back of the school to support autism awareness.

 “As a sign of community and respect for students, family members and friends living with autism, members of our community gathered on the field in the outline of a large heart and blew soap bubbles,” said Bosti Elementary School Principal Laura Kimball. 

Mrs. Kimball expressed her gratitude toward Nichole Johnson for coordinating the event, Joanna Zalewski and the “Recycling Rangers” for donating the bubbles, along with Michael Oldis, Jusin Maas and Mike Johnson for their invaluable help throughout the course of the day.

April is recognized as National Autism Awareness month, as schools and students across the country go above and beyond to promote autism awareness. 

Click here to watch a video

Singing to the Top

Singing to the Top vSinging to the Top Singing to the Top Singing to the Top

The Connetquot High School Concert Choir recently visited Minnesota, where they participated in several musical performances alongside internationally-renowned musicians.

During their visit, they took part in a workshop at St. Olaf College led by choir conductor Dr. Anton Armstrong, who is known in the choral music world for his talents. Based on their high level of achievement and musical successes in the past, the CHS Choir joined the world-famous St. Olaf Choir in their rehearsal, and were given the opportunity to sing for them as well. The students were also able to collaborate with the Concordia Choir students in conducting classes and rehearsals, singing a pre-planned song together and impressing all in attendance.

While in Saint Cloud, Minnesota, the Connetquot choir attended a performance by and later performed with the Rose Ensemble, a vocal group specializing in “early music.” 

Jordan Sramek, Rose Ensemble’s founder and artistic/executive director, showered the CHS Choir with words of praise for their performance.

“The events that took place on the trip to Minnesota were once-in-a-lifetime experiences for the students of the Connetquot High School Concert Choir,” said Concert Choir Director Brad Drinkwater. “Not only have they transformed into more skilled, knowledgeable and complete human beings, but the choir itself has elevated its standing amongst the top high school choirs in the country.” 

‘Launching’ Into Engineering

‘Launching’ Into Engineering photo

Second grade students from Cherokee Street Elementary School recently increased their engineering skills with assistance from a representative of the Long Island Maritime Museum during the recent “Launch It” event.

The goal of the day’s lesson was to use the provided materials in order to build a catapult which could safely send a clay ball through the air and onto a designated area, located a few feet away from the launch site. The students were supplied with a handful of quarters, which could be used in an effort to “purchase” materials which would assist with creating their catapults. The materials at their disposal included paper clips, rubber bands and spoons, which could all be utilized to assist in creating the perfect catapult. 

Working in small groups, the students created drafts of what they envisioned their launchers to look like, including design features and the proper materials required to bring them to life. After designing their launchers and “purchasing” the right materials, the students engaged in a trial and error method in order to successfully launch the clay ball from the starting point to their destination.

Healthy Discussions

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Fifth-grade students from Slocum Elementary School were recently treated to a highly informative presentation about tactics to properly handle emotions courtesy of a representative of the Too Good for Drugs program. During the classroom activity, the students were presented with a series of mock scenarios which could mirror real-life situations, and then discussed the best ways to express their emotions amongst their classmates after writing their ideas in their workbooks. 


Awesome Athletes

Awesome Athletes photo

Three Connetquot High School student-athletes recently committed to attending some of the nation’s premier colleges and universities to run track this fall during a signing ceremony held at Connetquot High School on April 16.

The district congratulates Emily Fieseler (Muskingum University), Bryanna Holguin (George Mason University) and Andrea Martino (Molloy College). 

The students were joined by Connetquot High School Principal Kenneth J. Costa, Director of Health, Physical Education, Athletics and Recreation Mark Dellecave, girls track coaches James Crowley III and Mike Austin, along with friends and family members. 

Each of these T-Birds achieved All-League honors during their careers at Connetquot High School. Bryanna Holguin achieved All-Suffolk County and All-State honors in the Triple Jump and Long Jump, and was also named both a Long Island and Suffolk County Champion in 2019.

Superb SAT Scores

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The district is thrilled to announce that six Connetquot High School students have earned scores of more than 1500 on their SAT’s, signifying a commitment to higher learning and robust knowledge of various topics. Congratulations to Victoria Cipriani, Darren Dutton, Jack Engeldrum, Olivia Esposito, Michele Muscolo and Thomas Passannante on their accomplishment. According to Connetquot Central School District Director of Guidance Jonathan Macaluso, this is the largest group of students to score over 1500 on their SAT’s in a single school year. Additionally, these students will join a number of Connetquot High School alumni who achieved this great feat as plaques signifying their accomplishment will hang outside the Connetquot High School Guidance Office for years to come. 

An Evening of Literacy

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The district recently hosted its seventh annual Library Literacy Celebration earlier this month at Connetquot High School, surrounding the central theme of “Every Picture Tells A Story.”  

With assistance from the district’s librarians, interactive stations and/or makerspace activities were set up throughout the schools’ hallways, as students were invited to create a robot or a monster, name literary characters, “jump into a book,” create a kaleidoscope, and participate in flight school, amongst many others.

This year’s guest presentation was delivered by author/illustrator Ralph Masiello, who coached the student-illustrators while storytelling and creating original artwork of his own. 

While all of the supplementary fun was occurring in the school’s hallways, the heart of the Literacy Celebration was showcased in the cafeteria, where districtwide student writing samples from grades K-8 were proudly displayed in a gallery format for all to enjoy.

Saving Wildlife

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Earlier this month, Connetquot High School student-members of Lori Forgione’s Animal Conservation Club recently worked to solve a mystery involving a female Gray Seal pup which had washed up on an east end beach.   

Members of the Atlantic Marine Conservation Society based in Hampton Bays visited the students and supplied a deceased 4-feet-long Gray Seal pup. The purpose of their visit was to explain the mission of Atlantic Marine Conservation Society, and to perform a “necrology” (animal autopsy) on the seal to determine the cause of death along with assistance from the students.

“After a lengthy dissection by the students, it was determined that the seal died of malnutrition and dehydration,” said Mrs. Forgione. “The presentation and necrology were part of a highly educational experience for the students in the Animal Conservation Club.”  

Members of the Connetquot HS Animal Conservation Club will follow up their studies with a weekend visit to the rehabilitation facilities at the Atlantis Aquarium, located in Riverhead.

The mission of the Atlantic Marine Conservation Society includes cleaning up marine debris, and trying to positively impact the marine environment. For further information on the subject, please visit

A Friendly Visit

A Friendly Visit photo
Members of Oakdale-Bohemia Middle School’s National Junior Honor Society, along with chaperone Mary McGonnell, visited the residents of The Arbors Assisted Living at Bohemia earlier this month. During their time with the residents, the students played bingo and afterwards shared a snack with them.

Hardworking Hackers

Hardworking Hackers photo

Four students from Oakdale-Bohemia Middle School recently attended the inaugural OYO Hackathon/Code Conquest which took place at Mineola Middle School on April 12.

The four student-representatives from Oakdale-Bohemia Middle School –Akshat Kamboj, Shawn Kovarik, Tyler Ramos and Sameer Umar – were joined by students from Bellmore-Merrick, Eastport South Manor, East Williston, Harborfields, Hauppauge, Kings Park, Manhasset, Mineola and Syosset school districts during the event. 

During the competition, students competed by creating coded projects to conquer territories on a map. Large monitors throughout the event displayed the live map as game play occurred during a three-hour, highly competitive period, with one team ultimately emerging as the Code Conquest winner. 

“Although the team’s score didn’t make it to the top of the charts, they showed amazing perseverance, and fought until the very end,” said Connetquot Central School District Elementary STEM Chairperson Bethanie Rizzo. 

An Electrifying Education

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In coordination with their lessons on electricity, students from Bosti Elementary School were recently paid a visit from representatives of PSEG Long Island for their “Electric Safety Town” presentation. Led by Resources Recovery Specialist Ryan Alworth, the presentation touched upon subjects such as conductors and insulators, and the safest way to use electronic devices within the household setting. Additionally, a model home was on display which created small sparks of fire when unsafe scenarios such as tampering with power lines came about. 

Fun and Friendly Competition

Fun and Friendly Competition  photo

The Connetquot High School’s National Business Honor Society held its fourth annual Badminton Tournament on April 10 at the Connetquot High School gymnasium. According to advisers Andrea Pizzimenti and Gina Senft, more than 75 participants and advisers took part in the fun, as many of the participants displayed their spirit and creativity by creating matching uniforms. The National Business Honor Society officers demonstrated leadership and professionalism throughout the planning stage, and on the night of the event as well. Players, supportive fans and friends agreed that the 2019 National Business Honor Society Badminton tournament was a big success for all involved.

Top of the Class

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The district is thrilled to announce that students Dylan Macejko and Michele Muscolo have been selected as the valedictorian and salutatorian for the 2019-20 school year, respectively, based on their academic successes and unwavering commitment to higher learning. 

Dylan has committed to attending Binghamton University in the fall, where he will study computer science. During his time spent at Connetquot High School, he served as captain for the varsity swim team, and was a member of the National Honor Society and World Language Honor Society, to name a few. Dylan is also a highly accomplished lifeguard, often lending his time to teach younger students on the weekends as a swim instructor. In addition, he was named an AP Scholar with Distinction, signifying that he achieved an average score of at least 3.5 on all exams taken with scores of 3 or higher on five or more of these exams.

Although undecided as to where to attend this fall, Michele is certain that she will pursue biology as her declared major. While attending Connetquot High School, she too was a member of the National Honor Society, along with the Tri-M Honor Society and Marching Band. In addition to being named an AP Scholar with Honor, Michelle also took part in a number of extracurricular activities such as Habitat for Humanity, the Animal Conservation Club and various Church fundraisers. 

Excellence In Art

The district would like to congratulate five Connetquot High School students for having their artwork chosen to be displayed in the Bay Area Friends of Fine Arts’ High School Student Invitational Juried Exhibit in Sayville.

Congratulations to Kristin Balser (Ceramic Art), Jason Cheng (Digital Art), Colleen DiMarzo (Digital Art), Toni Gerbino (Ceramic Art) and Sarah Vicente (Ceramic Art). In the Ceramic and Sculpture category, Sarah took first place, Toni secured second place and Kristin received an honorable mention for her work. 

“It has been a pleasure working with these students, as they have proven themselves to be passionate, hardworking and dedicated throughout all of their artistic endeavors,” said Vincent Osmers, Connetquot High School sculpting and ceramics instructor. 

A reception was held at the Gillette House in Sayville on April 7 as the students were joined by their family members, along with district staff members and administrators who praised their work and congratulated them on their accomplishments. 

Additionally, the gallery will be open on the weekend of April 13-14, from 1–4 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday. 

Reporting from the Field

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Without having to take a flight to another continent, elementary-level students from both the Idle Hour and Duffield elementary schools recently enhanced their newsroom skills by “reporting” from foreign lands.

With assistance from technology integration specialist Victoria Pappas, a number of third grade students at Idle Hour Elementary School stepped in front of a green screen and mimicked multiple professions from the journalism field, including newscasting, field reporting and operating the teleprompter. Prior to their excellent reporting, the students were asked to choose a specific aspect of nature to research, such as snakes, whales or wolves, which ultimately went hand in hand with the “Animal Planet” theme which was chosen for them. 

At the conclusion of the students’ content being filmed, the fifth-grade students at Duffield Elementary School will be editing the footage themselves and piecing together the video to make a concise and fun, video package. 

Healthy Hearts

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As a means of promoting heart-healthy activity and collecting funds to benefit the American Heart Association, staff and students from John Pearl Elementary School recently took part in a two-day “Kids Heart Challenge” jump rope event. With assistance from physical education teacher Nicholas Sturtz, the school’s gymnasium was transformed into a marvelous area designated for students to engage in jumping rope as they received support from their parents on the sidelines, along with motivation from an upbeat music soundtrack. The district is thrilled to announce $10,002 was raised during the course of the two-day event due to overwhelming community support. 

Magnificent Musicians

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In an effort to sharpen their scales and improve techniques, elementary-level students from the district recently visited with Oakdale-Bohemia Middle School music students for one-on-one musical mentoring sessions. After being welcomed by a number of student volunteers, the younger students were paired up with a Tri-M Music Honor Society representative who further prepared them for their New York State School Music Association performances.


Hakuna Matata

Hakuna Matata photo

The Duffield Elementary School Drama Club recently put on two stunning performances of Disney’s “The Lion King” for invited guests for two consecutive days of performances beginning on April 8. The students did an excellent job recreating the classic film through song and dance, as they told the tale of the young cub Simba and his many adventures. The district would like to thank Karen Pitka and Michael Innace for co-directing the production and assisting the students throughout the many weeks of rehearsals leading up to the performances.


Showcase of the Arts

Showcase of the Arts photo

On April 5, the district hosted its annual Showcase of the Arts event, inviting students throughout the district to highlight all of the wonderful art projects they have been working on throughout the course of the school year. On display were beautiful illustrations, unique sculptures and stunning photographs, to name a few. Additionally, joining the student-artists as a musical accompaniment during the evening was an orchestra section from both district middle schools, the Kickline team from Ronkonkoma Middle School, Oakdale-Bohemia Middle School and Connetquot High School, along with elementary-level orchestra, recorder, band and chorus groups.

Creating Equality

Creating Equality photo

In recognition of Autism Awareness Month, students enrolled in Tiffany Prin’s class at Ronkonkoma Middle School recently launched a detailed project in an effort to create a sense of inclusion throughout the school community.

“My students have been selling Autism Awareness T-shirts, puzzle piece lollipops and rubber bracelets,” said Mrs. Prin. “Half of our profit from these sales will be going to a boy with autism who was diagnosed recently with Ewing’s sarcoma, while the remaining funds will be used for student-supplies and for end of the year activities with our pen-pals from Oakdale-Bohemia Middle School.  Additionally, students and staff members will be wearing our special T-shirts each Friday in the month of April.”

Promoting Kindness

Promoting Kindness photo

Staff and students from Idle Hour Elementary School recently took on Maggie's Kindness Challenge in late March in honor of Maggie Schmidt of Greenlawn, who lost her battle with a rare form of cancer in 2017.

With assistance from PTA Cultural Arts Representative and Maggie’s Mission Advocate Michelle Burke, the students at Idle Hour took on the challenge to live life to its fullest, show kindness to all and be mindful of others and surroundings.  

As students performed challenges such as donating clothes, baking for friends and family, enjoying a sunset, spending time with others and dressing up for theme days, pictures were sent to Mrs. Burke as she put them together and displayed them during a schoolwide assembly for all to see. 

Throughout course of the week, more than 100 students participated in the challenge and kindness was spread throughout the community. Students also received bracelets as they handed in their participation pledges and certificates after they submitted their challenge trackers.

According to the official website, Maggie’s Mission was created in an effort to raise awareness of pediatric cancers, fund research and provide help to families and children in need. Although Maggie passed away in 2017, she is remembered as a wonderful young woman who loved everything life had to offer.

Capital Project 2019 Video

Capital Project

2019 Memorial Day Weekend Memo


Calendar Adjustment – Schools Now Closed for Students May 23, May 24 and May 28


Social Studies Honor Society Induction Ceremony

Social Studies Honor Society Induction Ceremony photo

Earlier this April, 110 Connetquot High School students were inducted into the Connetquot High School chapter of Rho Kappa, the National Social Studies Honor Society, by adviser Gregory Nizewitz.

Mr. Nizewitz introduced the officers of this prestigious group along with Margaret Ronai, the Connetquot Central School District director of social studies and business. Mrs. Ronai welcomed the newly inducted members, as well as the proud family members and friends who attended the ceremony. Islip Town Supervisor Angie Carpenter, Connetquot High School Principal Kenneth J. Costa and Board of Education President Milynn Augulis were also on hand to congratulate the honorees and their proud family members.

The three co-presidents of the Connetquot chapter of the Rho Kappa Honor Society – Victoria Cipriani, Michael DiMaio and Crystal Monge – introduced the new members. Additionally, treasurer and founding member Lauren Kennedy led the students in reciting the pledge. The new inductees joined together in reciting, “I do promise to serve others, to search for truth, to utilize knowledge, and to seek wisdom through the pursuit of academic excellence in the social studies. I promise service to Connetquot High School and to the community, for true scholars of the social studies lead by example.”

Congratulations to the newly inducted members of the Connetquot High School Chapter of Rho Kappa National Social Studies Honor Society:
Class of 2019 – Fariah, Basharat, Christopher Battista, Nicolle Brodowski, Emma Bunicci, Anesha Chowdhury, Sarah Delillis, Christopher Guevarra, Alex Halinar, Ciana Kaplan, Kendall Lillie, Matthew Lopez, Courtney Lyons, Andrea Martino, Hannah Mayer, Christina Monahan, Abby Navarez, Melissa Olcay, Christina Otero, Sara Perez, Sarah Rahim, Serena Roopnarine, Noel Root, Paige Sapienza, Alexis Smith, Sara Vincente; Class of 2020 – Paige Adamo, Sayida Afghani, Jenna Anderson, Abigail Audia, Emily Augulis, Daniel Bach, Deanna Beattie, Kelby Bishop, Alyssa Brady, Joseph Brimlow, Hannah Causin, Dmitri Cavanagh, Diproprosad Das, Colleen DiMarzo, Alaina Drennan, Hellena Elster, Sarah Fonsecca, Toni_Elena Gallo, Kayley Gross, Alexa Hartmann, Audrey Joseph, Dominick Katrivanos, Niko Keddy, Atif Khan, Meagan Lenihan, Denise Llivicura, Amanda Manuel, Kylie McGee, Karly McGee, Alexa Molinelli, Genevieve Moulton, Reilly Murphy, Victoria Opiela, Amanda Perrone, Kimberley Pettersen, Maddie Pittigher, Anna Polcini, Katie Postel, Kate Priolo, Kelly Romadi, Giovanni Santiago, Grace Saravia, Nicole Serravillok Ashley Sullivan, Nicole Thumann, Mackenzie Waile, Alex Young; Class of 2021 – Francis Aiello, Lisa Baldinucci, Kainaat Sacharat, Emma Brenner, Emma Cochran, Nicolette DiSilvestre, Joseph Duszak, Carmella Eade, Morgan Elliott, Adrianna Empaynada, Kate Engeldrum, Kylie Ferrentino, Mikayla Gibbons, Scott Gifford, Kayla Hansen, Michael Hanson, Daniel Haughie, Olivia Herrera, Keeghan Lavery, Julianno Leddy, Emily Medina, Emily Mysliwiec, Jacqueline Palumbo, Jenna Pellicano, Julianna Pereira, Hayley Rodriguez, Adriana Romano, Gabrielle Rowe, Tugce Sezer, Anna Stahurski, Isabella Truglio, Isabella VanKalmthout, Melanie Walsh, Kevin Wilk, Amanda Young, Elaina Zacynski.

The induction ceremony was held in the Eric Martinsen Performing Arts Center, followed by a reception where the students were presented with their certificates and offered light refreshments for them and their proud family members and friends. 

The mission and purpose of the Rho Kappa National High School Social Studies Honor Society is to promote scholarship and to recognize academic excellence in social studies among high school students; to provide through its local chapter, opportunities for exploration in the social studies in secondary school environments, and the community; and to encourage interest in, understanding of, and appreciation for the social studies.

Financially Smart Students

Financially Smart Students photo

In celebration of Financial Literacy Month, Connetquot High School students enrolled in Pamela Carey’s Personal Finance Classes recently travelled to Cherokee Street Elementary School to share important money saving tips with the Universal Pre-K Students. In addition to enlightening the young students on financial tips, the students also read from “One Cent, Two Cents, Old Cent, New Cent” by Bonnie Worth in an effort to further reinforce these skills.


Tri-M Benefit Concert 2019


Legislator Cilmi visits CHS Students

Legislator Cilmi visits CHS Students photo
As a means of bridging a real-life connection to their classroom instruction, Suffolk County Legislator Tom Cilmi paid a visit to Connetquot High School’s Participation in Government classes on Wednesday, April 3. During his visit, Mr. Cilmi discussed county government, running a campaign and answered student and staff questions regarding his position on a variety of issues.

Bringing Designs to Life

Bringing Designs to Life photo
Bringing Designs to Life photo 2
Fifth-grade students from John Pearl Elementary School recently enhanced their computer science and engineering skills as they created their very own projects from a MakerBot Replicator+ 3D Printer with assistance from library media specialist Karen Deaner. 

For the past few weeks, the young engineers spent time in the school library using the Tinkercad program to design three-dimensional miniatures of their choosing from scratch. Utilizing their creative talents, the students created keychain-sized designs featuring their names, humorous phrases and small robots. 

Tinkercad is credited as being one of the most popular classroom tools for creating 3D simple designs from scratch, as students are able to quickly rearrange their tangram-style designs without hassle. 

Helpful Career Advice

Helpful Career Advice
Twenty-one students representing Connetquot High School’s National Business Honor Society recently attended the National Grid/Junior Achievement Young Women’s Leadership Workshop held at National Grid’s Technical Training Center in Melville.

The young women began the morning by attending a keynote address given by Mary Genoy, vice president of National Grid. Afterward, they participated in three round-robin sessions which focused on strengthening their career skills - Business Communications, Career Panel and Working in Teams.

This full-day conference provided real life experiences for the students, as they met with diverse women in leadership roles and learned from their life experiences in the workforce. One of the main goals of the conference is to expose young women to other professionals who have pursued careers in a variety of fields.

Anything Goes

Anything Goes

The Oakdale-Bohemia Middle School drama club members recently took to the stage to put on a fantastic performance of “Anything Goes” before audiences for three consecutive evenings. The school’s adaptation was based off the classic 1934 musical, which chronicles the humorous antics of the passengers along an ocean liner on a path from New York to London. To prepare for this year’s production, which was directed by David Bentley-Garfinkel, the students spent months rehearsing their lines and perfecting the choreography before opening night.

Recognizing Autism Awareness Month

Recognizing Autism Awareness Month

In recognition of Autism Awareness Month, staff and students from Cherokee Street Elementary School recently wore blue-colored outfits and focused on lessons that celebrated the unique qualities that all individuals bring to the school community.

Due to the efforts of speech and language pathologist Nicole Bren and Cherokee students, a beautiful art piece featuring puzzle pieces stating “I am unique because…” was put on display in the school hallway. Students contributed their creative talents to come up with myriad reasons why they themselves are unique. 

Additionally, throughout the month of April, the school will be accepting monetary donations to benefit the Special Olympics. 

Celebrating the Colonial Era

Celebrating the Colonial Era
The fourth-grade classes at Cherokee Street Elementary School recently celebrated “Colonial Day,” as the students mimicked the lives of Americans living in the era. During the course of the past month, students researched different trades of the time, including ship building, farming and smiting by using resources made available in the school library in an effort to prepare reports they could share with the classmates and visiting parents. As an additional twist, the students got into character by dressing in costumes showcasing the clothing styles of the period, as girls were able to make their own “mob cap bonnets,” while the boys wore “tricorn hats.” 

Magnificent Mathematicians

Magnificent Mathematicians photo
Four Connetquot High School students recently participated in the 64th annual Suffolk County Mathematics Teachers Association Mathematics Contest, performing extraordinarily well and earning high honors along the way.

The students - Atif Khan, Saaim Rahman, Jinal Sheth and Aiden Spicciatie - were named top scorers for Connetquot in calculus and pre-calculus, and achieved scores which are competitively aligned with other Suffolk County participants. 

“We are very proud of all of the students who participated in the contest; this serves as a great accomplishment for Connetquot Mathematics,” said Connetquot Central School District Director of Mathematics Louise Burger. “A big thank you goes to Mu Theta Alpha as well for sponsoring our Connetquot Competitors.”

Savvy Savers

Savvy Savers
Students at Duffield Elementary School are gaining important financial literacy advice with assistance from school math specialist Cathy Ebbecke. During an activity hosted by Mrs. Ebbecke, the students were asked to compare and contrast items in hopes of determining if they were worthy of short-term saving goals, or long-term saving goals. The students were able to conclude that expensive pieces of technology such as laptops and iPads required months of saving, whereas the purchase of toys and candy could be made once a small amount of money was saved up. 

An Evening of Recognitions

The district’s Board of Education recognized a number of student accomplishments during a recent meeting held on the evening of March 26.  
To begin the night’s recognitions, Idle Hour Elementary School fourth-grade student Brynn Burke was congratulated for being named a regional-level winner in the Suffolk Region PTA’s Reflections competition based on her lovely original song she both wrote and performed on her guitar, surrounding the theme of “Heroes Around Me.”

Connetquot High School junior Edward Sollazzo was praised by the board of education for completing his Eagle Scout project, in which he donated a “Buddy Bench” and “Outdoor Lending Library” to the elementary school he attended as a child, Sycamore Avenue Elementary School. Additionally, Edward was kind enough to donate all of the supplementary funding received for this buddy bench back to Sycamore Elementary School in an effort to support future school endeavors. 

Connetquot High School girls gymnastics coach Renee Guerrieri spoke about her teams astounding success during the New York State Gymnastics Championships Competition which took place in Cold Spring Harbor on March 2. Student-athletes Amanda Pisano and Sarah Moussa were selected to compete, while Arianna Platti and Alexandra Melchiona were selected as alternates in the event of injuries. In addition to their achievements at the state competition, the team finished the regular season with an impressive record of 10-1.

Lighting Shores with STEM Lessons

Fourth-grade students from John Pearl Elementary School recently applied their robust engineering skills to create their very own miniature “lighthouses” during the Long Island Maritime Museum’s “Explore the Shore” event. Working in pairs, the young engineers utilized a number of conductive supplies such as paper clips, aluminum foil and brass fasteners in an effort to successfully create a light source for their battery-powered “lighthouses.” Additionally, the students were able to design and create the structure of their lighthouses with materials such as paper bowls, egg cartons and plastic containers. 

Celebrating St. Joseph’s Day

On March 19, Italian language students enrolled in Loredana Costa’s classes at Ronkonkoma Middle School recognized aspects of traditional Italian culture during a St. Joseph’s Day-themed celebration.

 “We had the chance to celebrate this very special Italian holiday, similar to how the Irish celebrated St. Patrick’s Day on March 17th,” said Ms. Costa. “We had fun in class and I talked to the students about how special this holiday is, not only in Italy, but around the world as well. As they enjoyed their special holiday pastries of Sfingi and cannolis, they also watched a video of the San Giuseppe procession in my hometown of Alcamo, Sicily.”

Individuals named Joseph or Josephine are traditionally presented with special pastries in honor of the holiday, which are generally available in the month of March.  Those lucky individuals usually share their ‘St. Joseph’s Pastries’ filled with cannoli cream, or custard, with loving family and friends.

‘Escaping’ from Australia


Third-grade classes at Cherokee Street and Edward J. Bosti elementary schools recently worked collaboratively to complete a series of Breakout EDU activities, which aligned with their current unit focused on cultural and geographical aspects of Australia.

During the activity, the students worked through a sequential order of clues in an effort to “escape” from their computer science classrooms. The puzzles featured popular elements of the continent such as wildlife, geographical location and traditional cultural aspects. 

At the conclusion of the breakout portion of the activity, the students then formed a circle and discussed how they went about their methods, and what they could have done in order to “escape” in a more efficient manner. 

Breakout EDU, which is based upon the popular “escape the room” interactive games, grants students the opportunity to communicate, collaborate, team build, and develop problem-solving and critical thinking skills.

All third-grade participants were able to "crack the codes" in less than the forty-minute time frame provided.


Survey Says, ‘Let’s Have Some Fun!’


On the evening of March 20, staff members, students and their families gathered within the Cherokee Street Elementary School cafeteria as the school hosted their annual “Faculty Feud” event in the style of the popular “Family Feud” game show.

Prior to the start of the game, the survey questions utilized were answered by the third-, fourth- and fifth-grade students of Cherokee. The competing teams consisted of teachers, parents, office staff and Principal Jill Lahey as they answered the survey-style questions in hopes of picking the top answers for each category. 

The district congratulates all of the evening’s participants – “The Good Sports,” consisting of Mrs. Lahey, Mrs. Francess, Mrs. Leo, Mrs. Lagravinese, Mr. Mike; “The Dynamic Duo’s,” featuring Mrs. Litchhult, Mrs. Suarez, Mrs. Campanella, Ms. Skahill, Mrs. O’Connell and Mrs. Meade; “PTA T-Birds,” with a lineup of Mrs. DeSiano, Mrs. Martin, Mrs. Widing, Mrs. Beisel and Mrs. Miller; and “Sesame Street,” rounded out by Mrs. Bren, Mrs. Raimondi, Mrs. Gallo, Mrs. Valenti and Mrs. Mongiello. By the end of the final round, the “PTA T-Birds” were declared the winners of this year’s event. 

The district would also like to thank Assistant Principal Patricia Murthy and her son, Joshua Murthy, for coordinating the game, recruiting the players and coming up with the survey questions. 

Scientific Explorers

Scientific Explorers

Students enrolled in the district’s C-Quest Program based out of Edward J. Bosti Elementary School recently experienced a fun and educational field trip to the reopened Long Island Science Center in Riverhead.

During their time spent in the center, the students were able to expand their scientific horizons with a number of hands-on activities and games. Included within the experience were an immersive Virtual Reality simulator, a “Magnetic Reality Wall” and an “Art in Action” station in where students scanned still pieces of art into a tablet in an effort to bring the pieces to life. 

In addition to the hands-on experiences, the students were able to engage in interactive classes with assistance from representatives of the Long Island Science Center, in which they were afforded the opportunity to take part in themed maker space activities.  


VIDEO: Connetquot's Curriculum


Making Wishes Come True

Making Wishes Come True

Students, faculty and staff members from Edward J. Bosti Elementary School were recently congratulated by representatives of the Teachers Federal Credit Union for their outstanding efforts to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Due to their ability to come together to support a good cause, students collected more than $500 in pennies, while the Teachers Federal Credit Union donated an additional $500 of their own. At an assembly held in the school’s atrium marking this milestone, mathematics specialist Stephanie Gozaloff joined TFCU representative Jennifer Gunn in presenting a check in the amount of $1,050 to Make-A-Wish Foundation representative Frank Gaeta Jr. The school would like to thank Mrs. Gozaloff and Youth and Family Services Coordinator Ryan McGuckin for arranging this annual fundraiser. 

The Make-A-Wish Foundation grants a wish on average, every 34 minutes to a child with a critical illness in hopes of bringing out some extra smiles. The district congratulates Michelle Semder’s pre-school class for being named the top fund-raiser this year, and being rewarded with a celebratory pizza party in the near future.

Celebrating 50 years of OBMS

Celebrating 50 years of OBMS photo
Celebrating 50 years of OBMS photo 2
In celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Oakdale-Bohemia Middle School, students of all grade levels recently took part in a number of exciting activities geared toward celebrating the history of the school’s half-century of existence.

This past January, members of the school’s social studies staff asked if they could create a historical research project for their students to teach them about the history of the school. 

The sixth-grade teachers proposed having students look at artifacts from a time capsule in the building, as well as observing trends from 1969 to present day by reviewing yearbooks from the past. In doing so, the teachers set up the artifacts from the capsule in library like an archeological dig on a table. Students rotated through several tables with yearbooks by decade and reviewed particular areas such as sports, fashion, clubs and activities during their time spent on the activity. 

Seventh-grade students decided to present an oral history lesson, and reached out to former teachers, students and administration through social media to see if they’d come to the school to speak to the students. The students then created questions related to school rules, lunch, structure of the sports teams, attire for students, etc. and presented their findings during a highly informative PowerPoint presentation. 

For their aspect of the celebration, eighth-graders decided to have students investigate the history of the school. The young historians looked at factual information such as the original blueprints for the building, reviewed why the school was built on this property, the population at that time, cost of food and household products, jobs in the area and the average salary at the time.

The OBMS staff worked closely with library media specialist Mairead McInnes, Assistant to the Superintendent John Allen and the Connetquot Library in order to obtain historical records for students to review.