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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.”

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.”

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.


EXCEL Students Show a Solid Grasp of Math

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Fifth-grade students in Islip’s EXCEL program created 3D Platonic solids for use in playing math games. Platonic solids, named for the ancient Greek philosopher Plato, are the five convex polyhedrons – the tetrahedron, cube, dodecahedron, octahedron and icosahedron – with congruent regular polygonal faces with the same number of faces meeting at each vertex. 

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