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Special Board of Education Meeting, 10/17/17

The Islip Board of Education will be holding a special Board of Education meeting on Tuesday, October 17th beginning at 6:00 p.m. in the District office Conference. The meeting is being held as an Executive Session only for the purpose of a Board workshop. There will be no public business session.

Girls Varsity Tennis Playoffs

 The girls varsity tennis team will be competing for the county title, starting with their first match at home this Thursday, Oct. 19 at 3:00 p.m.

The team has just completed their third consecutive undefeated season in league play, earning them their fifth consecutive league championship. In addition, 11 players were designated All-League and nine received All-County honors this year.

Please support the team on Thursday by stopping by the courts to give them a true "home court advantage!"

Tracking Nature’s Data

Tracking Nature’s Data

For seventh- and eighth-grade students in the district’s EXCEL program for the academically gifted, nature and technology come together with phenology, the study of periodic plant and animal life cycle events and how these are influenced by seasonal variations in climate and habitat factors.

The EXCEL students, who are participating in the Open Space Stewardship Program, have been gathering data to upload to the National Phenology Network for two years now, going outside on a regular basis to make observations, using an app called Nature’s Notebook to input data on species including Joe-Pye weed, red maple, tupelo, gray alder, buttonbush and American robin.


Board of Education Meeting on Oct. 24

The next meeting of the Islip Board of Education will be on Tuesday, October 24th beginning with an Executive Session at 6:45 p.m. The public portion of the meeting is expected to begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Islip Middle School Library. We hope you are able join us!

Girls Tennis Team Walks for Ovarian Cancer

Girls Tennis Team Walks for Ovarian Cancer

Members of the high school’s girls varsity tennis team participated in the 11th annual 5K Run/Walk to Break the Silence on Ovarian Cancer, held on Sept. 23 at Belmont Lake State Park in North Babylon. The event was sponsored by the Long Island chapter of the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition.

“This cause holds a special place in the team’s heart, as they pledged their support to a teammate’s mother who is currently battling this devastating disease,” said teacher Danielle Martello.


Important Safety Information

Please see the letter from Superintendent Susan Schnebel regarding an important safety issue in our community.

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Fall 2017 Newsletter Now Available

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Morgiana McDevitt Named LI Scholar-Artist

Morgiana McDevitt Named LI Scholar-Artist

High school senior Morgiana McDevitt has been selected as a Long Island Scholar-Artist for the 2017-2018 school year. McDevitt was selected for her outstanding academic and theatrical achievements.

The Scholar-Artist program, now in its 10th year, is a collaboration of the Long Island Arts Alliance, “Newsday” and the New York Community Bank Foundation, designed to recognize students judged to be “the best of the best” on Long Island in the disciplines of music, visual arts, media arts, theater and dance. High school seniors who demonstrate outstanding artistic and academic achievement – including an unweighted grade point average of 90 or above – are nominated by their school districts, and 10 students each from Nassau and Suffolk receive the program’s highest honor. LIAA Scholar-Artists receive a scholarship check for $250 and a framed copy of their “Newsday” profile, presented at LIAA’s annual gala at the Tilles Center for the Performing Arts.

McDevitt has already had a remarkable arts career. She appeared in the 2015 ABC feature film “Fan Girl” with Kiernan Shipka and Meg Ryan; performed as the lead in Islip High School’s production of “Pippin” as well as roles “The Wiz,” “Into the Woods,” “Cinderella,” “The Sound of Music,” “Big Fish” and “Mary Poppins”; performed at the Noel S. Ruiz Theatre at CM Performing Arts Center in Oakdale in productions of “Bring It on Bridget” and “The Spelling Bee”; and performed at the BroadHollow Theatre Company’s Bayway Arts Center in East Islip. In July 2017, she was a soloist for the Islip Arts Council’s concert at Heckscher State Park, performing the national anthem with the Long Island Philharmonic. As an active member of Islip’s school community, she has served as junior class vice president, Science Olympiad vice president, and president of the Theatre Arts Club and swing jazz ensemble.


Girls Soccer Team Wins at State Hall of Fame Tournament

Girls Soccer Team Wins at State Hall of Fame Tournament

The high school’s girls varsity soccer team came home winners of the inaugural NYSSCOGS New York State High School Girls Soccer Hall of Fame Tournament, held in Herkimer, New York in September.  The tournament hosted 22 of the state’s top girls soccer programs from Class AA through Class D.

Islip’s Lady Bucs began the trip with a six-hour bus ride to upstate Herkimer, then attended the first Hall of Fame induction ceremony, which included former standout state players, coaches and contributors such as Crystal Dunn, Ali Long, Emily Harner-Pickering, Sara Walen, Abby Wambach and Christie Welsch.

One of the inductees for the first Hall of Fame class was alumna Sue Weber-Alber, a high school and collegiate All-American who graduated from Islip in 2003. Her career continued at Hofstra University, where she was named Colonial Athletic Association Defensive Player of the Year three times, led Hofstra’s Pride team to CAA titles and NCAA Tournament berths in 2005 and 2007, was named CAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player twice, and earned a spot on the Hermann Trophy watch list for two years in a row. After her graduation from Hofstra in 2008, the school officially retired her No. 20 jersey. Weber-Alber was selected in the third round of the original Women’s Professional Soccer league by the Boston Breakers, and played for the team in 2009 under head coach Tony DiCicco. She is a longtime team member and current captain of the Long Island Rough Riders of the USL W-League, and serves as head coach of the St. Anthony’s High School girls soccer team. At the Hall of Fame ceremony, Weber-Alber selected current Islip coach Mike Reilly, the Hall’s vice president, to present her award and introduce her.

Following the induction ceremony, Islip’s Lady Bucs played the top-ranked Liverpool team, winning 1-0 in front of a large crowd at Herkimer Community College. The following day, Islip defeated another larger school, Baldwinsville, and won 4-2, earning the title of champions of their division. 

“It was a great experience for all of us, both on and off the pitch,” said Reilly.


Social Media Parent Night

Please join us in the Islip High School Auditorium on Tuesday, October 17th for our Social Media Parent Night. See the flyer linked below for all of the details.

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IDEA Task Force Coalition Special Event

Please join the Islip Public School's IDEA Task Force Coalition for an Evening with Suffolk County Police Commissioner Tim Sini on Wednesday, October 18th beginning at 7:00 p.m. in the Islip Middle School Auditorium. Full details may be found on the attached invitation.

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Zarate Appointed as New ENL and World Language Coordinator

Zarate Appointed as New ENL and World Language Coordinator

Priscilla Zarate has been appointed as the new ENL and world language K-12 coordinator for the district.

Prior to this, she had served since 2015 as executive director of the New York City Department of Education’s Division of English Language Learners and Student Support. She previously worked for seven years as assistant coordinator for bilingual and ENL programs at the Brentwood School District; for a year as bilingual, ENL and dual language programs coordinator for the Long Beach School District; and for eight years as bilingual, ENL and dual language coordinator for the Christa McAuliffe School in Jackson Heights, Queens. 

A resident of Deer Park, Zarate earned her bachelor’s degree in Spanish literature and elementary education at Hunter College of the City of New York, her master’s degree in bilingual education at Bank Street College, and her school district administrator and school building administrator degrees from the College of Saint Rose.

Since 2013, Zarate has been a committee member of the Town of Babylon Department of Human Services’ annual Hispanic Heritage Festival, for which she coordinates children’s programs and activities. In 2013, she was recognized at the festival by the town and Supervisor Rich Schaffer as a “Hispanic Leader Serving and Guiding Our Nation with Pride and Honor.” That same year, she was honored by State Sen. Phil Boyle at the Hispanic Heritage Awards ceremony in Brentwood.

“I believe that every child deserves high quality educational programs that value, respect and represent the cultural diversity and languages students bring into their school communities,” said Zarate. “Every child should be well prepared for a global society by providing them access to educational opportunities where they can become multilingual and multiliterate and extend their horizons to cross-cultural understanding and sensibility. My goal is to provide students, parents and teachers with the resources and support they may need to become successful in their school communities, as well as to instill leadership skills in students and encourage parents to take leadership roles in the education of their children. I look forward to continuing to develop successful programs that foster equality and an appreciation for learning languages.”


Important Health Notice

Please see the letter linked below from the Suffolk County Department of Health Services for important information.

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Community and Creativity Highlighted at Homecoming

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With purple-clad well-wishers lining Main Street, and the Bucky the Buccaneer mascot leading the way, the Islip school community began its homecoming celebration on Sept. 16 with a proud parade, highlighted by floats created by each class at the high school.

First came the freshmen with a take on the Magic School Bus, followed by the sophomores’ Willy Wonka-themed float and the juniors’ winning Alice in Wonderland creation. The seniors and their Clifford the Big Red Dog float claimed the prize for most spirit. A festive carnival followed the parade.

“Islip’s students truly showed spirit for their school and commitment to their community, evident in the creative floats, a well-attended parade and a carnival that welcomed children of all ages,” said teacher Ann Gordon.

In their Suffolk III football contest later in the afternoon, Islip’s valiant varsity Bucs played hard but fell short against Bellport, with a final score of 37-20.

During halftime, the school’s marching band, cheerleaders and kickline put on spectacular shows. Billy Bowling was named homecoming king and Kassidy Mullins was crowned as homecoming queen, joined at center stage by their fellow homecoming court members Ryan Abravanel, Nicole Arey, Ashley Howell, Kristen Julich, Justin Kerr, Grace Klomp, John Luzzul, Kristopher McDonald, Gia Sciara and Sean Skahan.

“As always this year’s homecoming demonstrated how amazing this community is,” said Principal Michael Mosca. “It was great to see the entire town come together to support their school. Despite the score sheet, our boys played their hearts out for their community and the students came together to support one another. That’s really all you can ask for.”



Miltenberg Named Assistant Principal of Middle School

Miltenberg Named Assistant Principal of Middle School

Bryan Miltenberg has been named the new assistant principal of the middle school.

Before joining Islip’s team, Miltenberg most recently served as middle school dean at Scholars’ Academy in Rockaway, Queens, where he also worked as peer collaborative/lead teacher for humanities, professional learning team leader, seventh-grade team leader and seventh-grade humanities teacher. He began his career as an educator as an English teacher at Wantagh High School.

A resident of Greenpoint, Brooklyn, Miltenberg earned his bachelor’s degree in American studies from Columbia University, his master’s degree in adolescent English education from Queens College and his school building leader certification from the College of Saint Rose’s Center for Integrated Teacher Education.

“I’m honored and grateful for the opportunity to serve the Islip community and be part of the Islip family,” said Miltenberg.

Sherwood's Second-Graders Celebrated with Parade

Sherwood's Second-Graders Celebrated with Parade

Sherwood held its first annual second-grade welcome parade this month to celebrate the school’s newest students. Immediately following the parade, the second-graders enjoyed a bagel breakfast and raffles.



Islip Career Academies Fundraiser

Support Islip High School's Career Academies and enjoy a delicious pancake breakfast on Saturday, November 18th.

Please see the attached flyer for all of the details, including a contact for tickets. We hope you'll be able to join us!


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High Schoolers Prepare for Careers with Summer Work Program

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Four industrious high school students – senior Joshua Monteforte and juniors Malik Ellis, Victoria Lockamy and Chrystal Weiner – participated in the district’s Summer Youth Employment Program in conjunction with the Suffolk County Department of Labor, earning valuable hands on experience.

“This county program is designed to give teens an opportunity to gain work experience by working with mentors in various types of occupations,” said Renee Clock, the school’s coordinator of work based learning programs, who assisted the students in filling out their applications, preparing for the interview process and obtaining the necessary documents to participate.

During the seven-week program in July and August, the students worked for five hours a day from Monday through Thursday throughout the district. Under the direction of Director of Facilities Brian Graham and the high school’s head custodian, Steve Seidler, they worked inside with the custodial crew and outside with the district grounds operation, assisting on a multitude of projects. They also met weekly with Graham and different local vendors to discuss possible career paths, work readiness, and employability skills. 

“This program truly helps students prepare for a career, not just for college,” said Superintendent Susan Schnebel.



First Day Is Full of Positive Energy at Islip’s Schools

First Day Is Full of Positive Energy at Islip’s Schools

From students to staff, principals to parents, the Islip school community were excited and ready for the year ahead as school began across the district on Sept. 5. Students took stock of their new classrooms, teachers, classmates and educational goals at the high school and middle school as well as Commack Road, Sherwood and Wing.

“The children arrived for their first day with refreshing, joyful smiles,” said Islip Middle School Principal Timothy Martin. “As a principal, I could not be prouder of the positive energy, and I wish everyone a happy new school year.”

“The starting of each school year brings great opportunity to reconnect with friends, have new experiences and set goals for success,” said Commack Road Principal James Cameron.

“The first day of school was great,” said Sherwood Principal Chad Walerstein. “It was good to see all of our returning students, and nice to welcome our newest students, the second-graders.”

“We're looking forward to another fantastic year,” said Michael Mosca, the principal of the high school. “We have continued to add to our an already impressive slate of courses and programs to prepare our students for their post secondary experience.”

Sparacio Named New Athletic Director

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The district has named John Sparacio as the new director of health, physical education and athletics.

Prior to joining the Islip team, Sparacio had served as athletic director for the North Babylon School District for nine years. He had previously worked in the West Islip School District from 1997 to 2008 as a physical education teacher and high school dean of students as well as coaching high school and middle school wrestling, football and softball. He has earned numerous honors during his career, including CAS Administrator of the Year, the NYSPHSAA Sportsmanship Promotion Award, the Carol M. White PEP Grant Award, League III Varsity and Junior Varsity Wrestling Coach of the Year, and the Who’s Who Among American Teachers Award.

Sparacio, a Bayport resident, earned his bachelor’s degree in physical education at Hofstra University, and his master’s degree in liberal studies/physical education and school administrator’s degree at Stony Brook University.

“My passion and desire to work hard is fueled by our students, staff and community,” said Sparacio. “They deserve the very best of me every day in order to seek out resources and opportunities that will benefit our students, programs and community as a whole. There is no better feeling for me than glorifying and recognizing others for their hard work and commitment to accomplishing their goals and going after their dreams.”


Alumna Ashley Goveia Leaves Legacy of Literacy

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Before her graduation, recent high school alumna Ashley Goveia spent developed the Early Childhood Literacy Program with two of the district’s elementary schools, Commack Road and Wing, to help inspire children of the Islip community to read. Goveia was invited to be a speaker at the Sayville Rotary Club’s annual Literacy Celebration and the Rotary District 7255 leadership meeting, and was presented with the Rotary Literacy Leadership Award for 2015 and 2016 for this project.

Goveia’s interest in literacy began when she was 3 or 4 years old.

“I heard on TV that there were young children who were homeless and I wanted to make them feel better by giving them my favorite books,” she said. “I collected all of my books in a blanket and dragged them to the door, to give what I thought were the only six homeless children in the world something special. I repeatedly asked my mom when were we giving my books to the kids, until we figured out a way to do it.”

They started the Legacy of Literacy program 13 years ago through local Rotary Clubs, proving thousands of free books to hundreds of children. As Goveia grew older, she continued working on these events, but also wanted to do her own projects, which led to the Islip program.

“I chose to develop the Early Childhood Literacy Program because I can relate to children struggling to read, as it was my most difficult area of study, and it has been my inspiration to give to others since I was small. I wanted to inspire small children to love to read and become lost in a good story, and I especially wanted to give them something to love that they could have their entire lives.”

The process began with Goveia meeting with the elementary principals to introduce the project and to try to develop specific events tailored to their schools. The events provided fellow high school students who participated with community service credit. Goveia also chose younger Interact Club members to shadow her so that the club can keep the project going after her graduation.

“Literacy and community service is something I have dedicated myself to for nearly my entire life,” she said. “I know I will continue serving my community throughout my life and I hope in some small way, to inspire others to do the same.”

SCOPE Summer Fun

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The district’s SCOPE Islip Summer Explorations program, hosted at the high school this summer, offered students entering first through fifth grades an opportunity to participate in a variety of classes from sports and nature, to cooking, clay making and technology.

Organized by business teacher Joe Modica, who serves as the program’s dean, Summer Explorations was facilitated by Sherwood Elementary School nurse Ann Maria Ferry. Robin Ahlers and Karen Volkman, both teachers at Islip High School, helped to ensure a fun-filled summer with their respective courses, “LEGO Builder’s Club,” which encouraged students to use their imaginations to build structures and characters following a daily theme, and “Let’s Get Cooking,” where students made various meals such as tacos, smoothies and chocolate chip cookie lasagna. Other program instructors included Islip Middle School teachers Sue Davis, Laura Greco and Jessica Wilkow.

“No matter what class the students were involved in, they are sure to have had an exciting and educational summer,” said Modica.