Newfield High School Cuts Loose with Footloose

Newfield High School theatre art students recently performed the 1998 musical, Footloose. In addition to the performance, Newfield High School G.O. put together a dinner and performance for senior citizens for a night of entertainment, dancing, and delicious Italian food and cookies.

“Footloose’s storyline emphasizes the value of expressing oneself through music and the positive impact all artistic disciplines can have on one’s life. Our Newfield High School thespians embody raw talent, dedication, and pure passion for creativity and self-expression,” said Margaret Derasmo, Costumes and Props Director. “They put on a performance, as is tradition with our thespians, that brought the audience to their feet with their exceptional acting, singing, and dancing.”

The audience was on the edge of their seats listening to nostalgic songs and watching the high-spirited dances. The performance was a huge success and viewers appreciated the drama, comedy, and romance.

“Congratulations to our Newfield High School Theatre Arts for another outstanding performance. A round of applause to our student leaders, ensemble, cast, crew members, pit orchestra, and our cosmetology department,” said Scott Graviano, Principal of Newfield High School. “Thank you to our production staff for dedicating their time to ensure our students were able to perform to their highest potential.”

Middle Country Schools Honor March Students of the Month

The Middle Country Central School District named four students from the District’s four secondary schools as students of the month for March. Each student was recognized at a recent Board of Education meeting, acknowledging their dedication to excellence and community involvement.

“Each month we are surrounded by four brilliant students who emulate hard work, passion, and values of the entire Middle Country student body,” said Dr. Roberta Gerold, Superintendent of Schools. “We are honored to announce our students who go above and beyond in and outside of school.”

Centereach High School student Amber McLeod is an exceptional student academically. She challenges herself by taking a rigorous schedule. Her current weighted GPA is 96.6 and she is ranked in the top 20 percent of Centereach High School’s graduating class. Amber will graduate in June with three completed AP classes and six college-level classes. She is a key member of a newly formed psychology club that raises awareness and provides support to students suffering from mental health issues. She is the leader of history club serving as the president for the group’s Black History Month activities and celebrations. Outside of school, Amber volunteers for a non-profit organization, Sessions for Hope. This organization operates out of SUNY Old Westbury and SUNY Stony Brook and is dedicated to offering mental and spiritual guidance for young men and women.

Amber is currently in the process of weighing her options for school next year. She plans to study education and attain her master’s degree in English. She hopes to travel the world and teach English at an international school and plans to continue with her own writing, hoping to publish books and write screenplays for movies.

Newfield High School student Delaney Unger is passionate about all things music and dance. She has been dancing since she was three years old. In sixth grade, she was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a cancer of the bone in her left femur. During chemotherapy treatments, she was given the option to have a surgical procedure called rotation plasty amputation. This phenomenal surgery had only been performed once before at Stony Brook University Hospital. On April 5, 2017, Delaney opted to do the surgery and was ultimately declared cancer-free in September 2017. Fast forward six years, Laney is the captain of the Newfield High School varsity kickline team and is a  teacher at Chorus Line Dance Studio. Delaney is a member of the Tri-M Honor Society, the Foreign Language Honor Society, and Girl Scouts. She maintains a weighted average of 98.48 and has the potential to graduate in June with more than 35 college credits.

Delaney and her family founded The Live Like Laney Foundation which is dedicated to helping children and families dealing with childhood cancer. She is committed to the University of South Carolina for the fall and hopes to continue with kickline.

Dawnwood Middle School student Morgan Primak is a model student with a wonderful personality and an endless thirst for knowledge. Morgan’s overall average for her sixth-grade school year is 99.4 and her average for the first and second quarters of this school year is 99.3. Outside of the classroom Morgan’s main interest is swimming. She is a member of the Three Village Swim Club where she dedicates her time to swimming six days out the week for an hour to an hour and a half per day. She is also a member of the seventh-grade orchestra, National Junior Honor Society, Sign Language club, and Youth for Humanities club. Morgan hopes to become a veterinarian when she finishes college.

Selden Middle School student Laci Turner is a well-rounded student. Her grades have been very impressive since she first arrived. Her first quarterly average back in sixth grade was 96.8 and it has never dropped below that since. During the past six quarters, Laci’s quarterly average has been 99 five times.

Laci is the captain of Selden Middle School’s field hockey team and the president of the National Junior Honor Society. Laci plays lacrosse and basketball for Selden Middle School. She has been a Girl Scout since the first grade and loves dancing. Laci volunteers at the Middle Country Public Library and her church. She hopes to attend Columbia University or Yale University and pursue a career as an orthodontist.

PARP Celebration at Middle Country Central School District

Elementary schools in the Middle Country Central School District have been busy celebrating Pick A Reading Partner (PARP) week to get their young learners excited about literature. For example, at Stagecoach Elementary School, students participated in PARP week with a fairy tale theme, “Once Upon a PARP”. To kick off the week, students engaged in various events and activities such as fairy tale trivia, free book giveaways, drop everything and read time, ballroom gym, and mystery guest readers.

At North Coleman Road Elementary School, students celebrated PARP week with a theme of “Invasion for the Out of This World”,  where Rachel Ndembera, Coordinator of Science and Research K-12, visited the students as a guest reader. Ms. Ndembera shared two amazing stories celebrating women who made outstanding contributions to our nation’s space program.  At North Coleman Road, students created North Coleman Road aliens during their art classes.

Learning to read is arguably the most important skill in a child’s education. PARP week is a great opportunity for students to ask an older sibling, parent, grandparent, or friend, to become a reading partner and read with them for at least 20 minutes. PARP was first introduced in 1978 by New York State Senator James Donovan in hopes of strengthening the collaboration between home and school to encourage students’ love of reading.

Middle Country Student Wins New York State Gymnastics Title

Middle Country Central School District recently announced Hannah Hughes, a sophomore at Newfield High School dominated the New York State Gymnastics Competition in Buffalo, New York. Hannah placed third in floor, third in beam, second in bars, and first place in vault. She was also named the New York State All-Around Champion.

“Congratulations to Hannah for her outstanding performance at the state gymnastics competition in Buffalo. The numerous awards she won in Buffalo, including being named the all-around champion at the competition, are indicative of her commitment to her athletic craft. ,” said Joseph Mercado, Middle Country Central School District Director of Athletics. “Hannah has always shown great enthusiasm and passion for gymnastics. Her dedication to her sport serves as a role model for the other athletes in our program..”

Be Bold, Be Brave

Every year, during the month of March, students across Middle Country Central School District celebrate Women’s History Month to honor the many women who have had major impacts on our country’s history, culture, and society.  At Centereach High School, the celebration of Women’s History Month culminated with a Be Bold, Be Brave event. 

“While the important contributions made by women throughout our country’s history are part of the regular curriculum, Women’s History Month offers us a special opportunity to highlight these women who have helped shape the world we live in today,”  said Thomas Bell, Principal of Centereach High School. “We encourage our educators and students to spotlight women’s contributions, achievements, and voices during this month.”

For the Be Bold, Be Brave event, Centereach High School students selected notable women and created presentations that featured their pictures and stories.  As part of the event,  choir members and teachers sang women-sung songs that emphasized the message of being strong women and prevailing against adversity and challenges. 

“It was an honor to be a guest speaker during our Women’s History Month celebration. Women’s History Month is about honoring the past women that came before us and about all the strong women in the present who will continue to pave the way for future generations,” said Sara Choit, Assistant Principal of Centereach High School. “Special thanks to our keynote speaker Erin Ley and advisor Victoria Cuomo for the countless hours of preparing the brilliant event together.”