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Reflections Contest Honorees at Gelinas

Reflections Contest Honorees at Gelinas photo
As a result of their artistic and literary talents, P.J. Gelinas Junior High School of ninth-grader Natalia Chou, eighth-grader Ava Della Pietra, seventh-grader Alanna Wu and ninth-grader Jacqueline Wu have been named school winners in this year’s PTA Reflections contest.  
These students submitted creative work interpreting the theme “Heroes Around Me” for consideration in the annual awards program. Their winning entries have now been submitted to the Suffolk Region PTA for judging and consideration for the state and national levels of the competition.
For the past 50 years, the National PTA has coordinated the Reflections program to enable students to “explore their thoughts, feelings and ideas.” As part of the contest, the students are invited to create and submit original works of art in one or more of these categories: dance choreography, film, literature or music. 

2019-2020 Calendar Summary Now Available


Varsity Patriot Scores On and Off the Field

Varsity Patriot Scores On and Off the Field photo
A perennial powerhouse and all-around strong student, Ward Melville High School senior Alexis Reinhardt has been named a News 12/Bethpage Federal Credit Union Scholar Athlete. 

Alexis, or Lexi as she is often called, has been in varsity field hockey since the eighth grade. She has also been on the varsity lacrosse team for the past four years. Earlier this year, she was named a Player of the Year by Newsday for her contribution to the sport of field hockey and was an integral part of leading Ward Melville to the state championship. 

As a student-athlete, Lexi is focused, driven and determined to always do her best both in the classroom and on the field. She was captain this past season for the Ward Melville field hockey team and earned All-State honors. Lexi has taken on leadership roles as an underclassman for the lacrosse team as she is organized, motivated and a true leader. She earned All-Division Honors in both her sophomore and junior lacrosse seasons. 

“Lexi embodies the true meaning of a student-athlete, as she holds both her academics and athletics in the highest regard,” Peter Melore, executive director of health, physical education, recreation, health services, drivers’ education and athletics, said.

“All in all, she is simply one of the best all-around young ladies here at Ward Melville – student, athlete and person,” field hockey coach Shannon Sioss said. 

This well-rounded student-athlete will be continuing her lacrosse career at Cornell University in the fall.


Jumping for Heart Health

Jumping for Heart Health photo
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Jumping for Heart Health photo 5
Nassakeag Elementary School took part in the American Heart Association’s Kids Heart Challenge this winter as a way to help promote the importance of heart health. 

As part of the district’s physical education curriculum, teachers Jeanne Lalima and Christopher LaRochelle taught students the skill of jumping during their class sessions. Following this unit, students could qualify for a schoolwide contest by jumping consecutively for four minutes. 

Sixty-eight students from fourth- through sixth-grade accomplished this goal. All of the participants did an amazing job, and the three finalists were sixth-grader Timothy Brown (third place), sixth-grader Sadie Pitrelli (second  place) and fourth-grader Peyton Ritchie (first place), who even surpassed the school’s jump rope record by jumping consecutively for 27 minutes and 42 seconds! 

Pre-K 2019-20 Lottery Application


Exploring Paths to the Future

Exploring Paths to the Future photo

With the question, “What does my future entail?” prevalent in their minds, hundreds of Three Village Central School District students and families gathered to participate in an educational, interactive career fair.

Sponsored by the Three Village Industry Advisory Board, also known as 3V-IAB – a new partnership between the Three Village Central School District and local businesses – the program was the first in a series of initiatives designed to bridge the skills gap between education and 21st-century employers. 

Over 40 Long Island businesses were present during the Ignite Your Career…Discover Your Opportunities career fair, and representatives spoke with attendees about fields such as technology, finance, sports management, engineering, health care, hospitality and much more. To make this a meaningful experience for all students, a “career DNA” analysis was provided to students in grades 7-12 to reveal relevant career paths that correspond to their unique personalities. A student’s career DNA guided them toward careers that were spotlighted at the fair. Based on a student’s career DNA results, they then had the opportunity to engage with businesses from across Long Island to discover and ignite their passions.

“This event will ultimately help Three Village students to identify elective courses that are stepping stones into their areas of interest,” said 3V-IAB coordinator and Ward Melville High School business teacher Ilene Littman. “Businesses that were represented informed students of their personal journeys to enable them to find clarity and direction toward college majors and careers.”

The development of the 3V-IAB came about with the onset of Ward Melville’s new work-based learning program called Career Jump Start. This is an elective course that teaches students career exploration/planning, essential pre-employment skills, job success skills, professionalism and ethics as well as teamwork and leadership. Based on a student’s interests and skill set, they are also placed in job shadowing and/or an internship to provide them with real workplace experiences and to help confirm if their desired interests are meeting their expectations before embarking on study in these fields. The 3V-IAB was initially formed to create business partners to help support hands-on student experiences in this program.

“The 3V-IAB and the district as a whole is hoping to open new doors for our students, to have them realize the multitude of career options that exist for them and enlighten them to the sometimes nontraditional ways that people discover their passions and associated careers,” Ms. Littman said. “Students should also realize that our enriching electives program at Ward Melville is a great starting point, and should be taken advantage of, to assist students in discovering their passions, which will increase their chances for successful college and career paths.”

Donations for Furry Friends

Donations for Furry Friends photo

Pre-kindergarten students from the Three Village Central School District put a spin on the traditional giving drive when they hosted a grade-level blanket and towel drive for Kent Animal Shelter.

With help of the administrators at North Country Administrative Center and the Nassakeag Elementary School community, the students collected dozens of donations. Additionally, the pre-K classes each used their creative skills to decorate fleece blankets for the shelter.  

“The donations were amazing, and the children loved creating blankets that will be used in cages for the dogs and in the cat house,” said pre-K teacher Maureen MacDowell. “When I arrived at Kent we loaded all of the donations into their storage shed for the colder weather. They were so grateful and touched by our donations.”

Pre-K Enrollment Information – NEW DATES


Teachers Presenting at the National Conference

Teachers Presenting at the National Conference photo
In recognition of their exceptional teaching practices, Three Village Central School District social studies teachers Allison Kane, Dianne Kraemer and Megan Stringer recently presented at the National Council for the Social Studies Conference, held this winter in Chicago. 

Their sessions, which focused on Model Parliament and Economics, were well received by all who attended. Ms. Kane presented individually on Model Parliament and Utilizing Student Energy and Passion to Generate Understanding. Ms. Stringer and Ms. Kraemer co-presented on best practices in Economic Education, including a unit on having students complete a “Shark Tank” simulation.

According to the National Council for the Social Studies, over 2,000 requests for proposal are received and only a small percentage are accepted. The conference draws thousands of social studies teachers from across the United States. 

Meeting Personal Fitness Goals

Meeting Personal Fitness Goals as

Setauket Elementary School third- through sixth-grade students ran hundreds of miles this winter as part of their participation in the school’s running club.

Eighty-two students took part in the initiative and met from October through December on Mondays after school to run for 60 minutes each session. Recording their progress along the way, many students ran three or more miles each session, and each club member ran enough miles to cumulatively count as a full marathon. As such, each was awarded a medal from the New York Road Runners. 


Singing in the Holidays With Local Residents

Singing in the Holidays With Local Residents photo

Nassakeag Elementary School fourth-grade chorus students helped to make the holiday season a merry and bright one as they hosted a holiday singalong at Atria Senior Living.

During the event, the students performed several holiday classics and invited those in attendance to join in on the musical fun. Under the direction of their music teacher Laura Cooley, the students performed a pitch-perfect performance that left all in attendance eager to celebrate. 

Ward Melville’s Regeneron Scholars

Ward Melville’s Regeneron Scholars photo
Ward Melville High School seniors Kelsey Ge, Maya Pena-Lobel, Megan Specht and Elizabeth Wang have been named Scholars in the 2019 Regeneron Science Talent Search, a program of the Society for Science and the Public. 

This honor was bestowed upon the students based on their comprehensive science research projects. As Scholars, each student was awarded a $2,000 prize, and an equal dollar amount is donated to their home school to be applied to education in science, engineering and math. 

Of the 300 Scholars, 40 will advance as finalists and be invited to Washington, D.C., in March to participate in the final judging, display their work to the public, meet notable scientists and compete for awards, including the top prize of $250,000. 

Below is a short overview of each of the student’s projects.  

Kelsey Ge – Multidecadal Trends in Tropical Cyclone Behavior within North Atlantic Sub-Basins
Statistical tests reveal that tropical cyclone intensification has grown more severe over the past 30 years, likely attributed to increase in sea surface temperature and other environmental factors throughout the tropical North Atlantic Ocean. 

Maya Peña-Lobel – Changes in Gene Expression of Ion Regulatory Proteins in Developing Atlantic Silverside (Menidia menidia) Subjected to Ocean Acidification Conditions
Carbon emissions have increased acidity and temperature of the earth’s oceans. How do such changes influence marine life? I showed that acidity and temperature modify the way genes control protein production in developing fish. Climate change affects fish on molecular level. 

Megan Specht – Effect of Micronutrient Consumption in Association with p53 status on Colon Cancer Progression: A Prospective Study in Racial Health Disparity.
The micronutrients in the food we consume can be used to treat numerous illnesses – not just prevent them. The vitamins assessed inhibited colon cancer, but yielded varying results by race, supporting the idea that biological difference between races may be present. 

Elizabeth Wang – A Novel Effect of Cannabidiol (CBD) on Microglial Activation in the Presence of Epileptic Activity
A novel relationship was discovered between cannabidiol, microglial activation and epilepsy to guide the development of new epilepsy treatments. Cannabidiol was found to have anti-inflammatory and proinflammatory effects on microglial cells associated with epileptic brain activity. 

Students Create a Village for Veterans

Students Create a Village for Veterans photo

Setauket fifth-graders in Christine Beck’s class used their creativity to fashion an enormous gingerbread village this holiday season. With the help of math AIS teacher Lisa Wall, the students used traditional ingredients to bring the display to life. Such items as pretzels, frosting and various candies helped the space take shape and bring unique items, such as an igloo, a train, snowmen and even Christmas trees, to life.

The completed project was donated to the Long Island State Veterans Home in Stony Brook. 

SACC Programs Rally to Help Others

SACC Programs Rally to Help Othersadaa

Three Village Central School District’s elementary SACC programs banded together through a community service project this winter to spread holiday cheer to individuals needing support or assistance.

Under the direction of SACC Supervisor Marie Boettcher and in coordination with former SACC member and Ward Melville High School graduate Matt Tranquellino, each of the five programs collected new and gently used toys and games as well as clothing items for the Association for Mental Health and Wellness. Mr. Tranquellino is the case manager for this organization, which helps coordinate care for children ages birth to 21 years of age, who have physical, academic or emotional disabilities, and often live in difficult circumstances or are homeless.  

At Minnesauke, the SACC program was supported by the building’s Student Council. The building collected clothing and also had a “Giving Tree,” which was decorated with paper ornaments listing clients’ specific wishes. Families took the ornaments off the tree and brought in a gift for the child listed on the back of the ornament. 

A few days before the gifts were donated, the SACC students had a “Wrap Party” at the program where they wrapped all the gifts and labeled them appropriately. In addition to the clothing that was brought in, the program collected over 100 gifts.

Busy Bags Bring Big Smiles

Busy Bags Bring Big Smiles photo

Setauket Elementary School students are working to brighten the lives of those staying at or visiting Stony Brook Childrens Hospital, thanks to an initiative created by fifth-grader Aida Woreth and third-grader Maddox Woreth, and coordinated by the students’ mom Jessica and by second-grade teacher Sandi Vohrer.

The concept, which is called Busy Bags, is involving the entire school this year, as each grade level is selecting a particular month to help create these special treats. The bags are filled with toys, trinkets and other goodies purchased through the donations of family and friends. The idea is to provide little ones with something to enjoy, do or play with when in a setting that can often elicit less than happy feelings. 

The initiative began in the fall and will continue through the summer, as the staff will be participating in a bag project at the end of the school year to ensure that enough bags are available when school is off for summer vacation. The building’s student council also helped donate to the cause, creating bags specific to baby or toddler-aged patients. 

Rolling Into Safety Town

Rolling Into Safety Town photo

With the help of their physical education teachers, Minnesauke Elementary School students learned valuable safety lessons as they rolled through a mock town set up in the school’s gymnasium.

Minnesauke Safety Town is an annual tradition that enables students to learn the rules of the road as they maneuver through an obstacle course on scooters. Along the path, students are required to stop at stop signs, travel through traffic circles and observe the right of way at intersections. Throughout their travels, students are able to make stops at several local attractions and locations, including a car wash, ice skating rink and a sports activity station, and even fill up their “cars” at a gas station. 

Alumni Share Advice

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Members of recent graduating classes from Ward Melville High School returned to their alma mater this December to shed some light on college life and the acceptance process for the building’s current students. 

During the annual Alumni Day event, the returning Patriots shared sound advice with many students immersed in the college application and decision process. The alumni spoke about the fears and excitement they faced during their first semesters, how they selected their college and the challenges they encountered when making the transition from high school to college. 

Throughout the day, the alumni answered questions as well about their living situations, school size and academic requirements. Those who have already entered postgraduate professions addressed their transition to the job market.  

Some of the colleges represented during the event included Boston University, Columbia University, Cornell University, Duke University, Fashion Institute of Technology, Marist College, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stony Brook University, University of Miami, University of Texas and the University of Vermont. 

Coding for Fun

Coding for Fun photo

In celebration of the global Hour of Code event, Ward Melville High School students and staff took part in a series of interactive activities within the school’s library in December.

With the assistance of high school librarian Dr. April Hatcher, participants learned the fundamentals of computer coding through videogaming activities, such as Angry Birds, Dance Party, Flappy Bird and Minecraft. The initiative helped to demystify the science of coding and helped to prove that anyone can develop the skills to code. 

Health Think Tank: Vaping Series-Part I

The following link will give you basic information about vaping.

Please check back bi-weekly for new information.
Thank you for working with us to combat the vaping epidemic.


Toys for Holiday Smiles

Toys for Holiday Smiles
For what has become an honored tradition, Arrowhead Elementary School, Minnesauke Elementary School and R.C. Murphy Junior High School teamed up during the holiday season to coordinate a cross-school drive to benefit those in need. 

During the multiweek event, students and staff at each of the buildings generously donated children’s toys. The hundreds of items were then used to “stuff a school bus” and delivered to the Gerald Ryan Outreach Center. 

While each building is important to support the cause, this annual event is largely organized by Lolita Portal-Pfeffer at Murphy each year. 

Becoming Champions at Arrowhead

Becoming Champions at Arrowhead photo
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Under the leadership of special education teacher Marisa Castoro, Arrowhead Elementary School’s classes collaborated to create a project entitled “#thechampionproject.” 

Seeking inspiration from the song “The Champion” by Carrie Underwood, the group created a wall collage of student work (writing and an acrostic poem) based on the song. The project is a great reflection of this year’s school theme of being your own champion, having a growth mindset and persevering despite challenges. 

Ward Melville Lacrosse Coach Earns National Award

Ward Melville Lacrosse Coach Earns National Award photo
Ward Melville High School head lacrosse coach Jay Negus has been presented with the Prep School Lacrosse Showcase 2018 Coach of the Year award from the National Interscholastic Lacrosse Coaches Association. 

In 2018, the 21-1, Ward Melville lacrosse team won its second consecutive Class A New York State championship. This was Negus’ fifth season at the helm of the Patriots. An alumnus of Ward Melville, Mr. Negus has compiled an 88-16 overall record since taking over the program in 2014.

“NILCA couldn’t be more excited to name Coach Negus as NILCA’s Prep School Showcase Coach of the Year,” said Ren Pettinelli, president of the National Interscholastic Lacrosse Coaches Association. “What Coach Negus has been able to accomplish in his five seasons at Ward Melville is truly amazing in this day and age. With so many great programs across the country, he has lifted an already storied program to a level such that Ward Melville will be at the top of the national polls discussions for years to come.”

Traveling the World to Learn Holiday Traditions

Traveling the World to Learn Holiday Traditions photo

Nassakeag Elementary School second-grade classes “traveled” around the globe as they learned about different traditions and customs as part of their Holidays Around the World activity.

After boarding an imaginary airplane, the classes rotated between classrooms to learn about countries including India, Germany, Korea and the Netherlands. Within each classroom, the students created crafts based on something traditional to that region. For example, the students created poinsettias in Mexico and St. Lucia crowns and “wooden” shoes in Sweden. 

“The students were excited to learn how many of the holiday traditions we celebrate in America have strong roots to foreign countries,” said Joan Sperry, a teacher who helped to coordinate the initiative. 

Ward Melville Student Becomes Published Researcher

Ward Melville Student Becomes Published Researcher photo
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Ward Melville High School student Ryan Qin has become a published author based on his research on mobile keyboards and text entry. 

This research – “MobileHCI 2018 Workshop on Socio-Technical Aspects of Text Entry” – was first published this fall as part of the MobileHCI 2018 20th International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction with Mobile Devices and Services. Ryan’s work was one of the seven papers (out of 28 papers) that received this honor. Additionally, his long paper was showcased during the ACM ISS 2018 Interactive Surfaces and Spaces conference held in Tokyo.

Ryan worked on this project under the direction of Xiaojun Bi, assistant professor of computer science at Stony Brook University and director of the computer science department’s Human-Computer Interaction Lab. He has been interning with the professor since last school year. 

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Summer Recreation Date Correction - July 8 - August 16


The dates on the 2018-19 District Calendar for Three Village Summer Recreation Program are INCORRECT. The dates for Summer Recreation camps (Full Day, Half Day & Travel camp) are JULY 8 – AUGUST 16th, 2019.

Donations Help To Outfit Others

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Nassakeag Elementary School students in Jo-Ann Hudecek’s fourth-grade class helped to make the holiday season a warmer one for those less fortunate by coordinating a children’s clothing and toy drive. 

During the two-week event, the students worked with the building’s social worker and her graduate student to solicit donations from the school community. They made posters, placed them around the school and created notices that were sent home announcing their efforts. 

The donations received were delivered to Long Island Coalition for the Homeless in mid-December. 

Board Celebrates Student-Athletes

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Ward Melville High School student-athletes were celebrated as part of the Board of Education’s December meeting for their outstanding fall season, in which each varsity team qualified for the playoffs and 222 students were named scholar-athletes. 

During the meeting, the members of the tennis, swimming and golf teams were celebrated for having qualified for this year’s state championships. Members were honored for their individual achievements as well as their collective contributions to the district’s strong athletic program.

Exploring STEM

Exploring STEM photo

More than 600 Three Village students, staff and families came together to explore a number of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) topics during an interactive program coordinated by the Three Village STEM Enrichment Foundation Inc.

During the STEM Family Fun Night, attendees visited various stations to explore these concepts in a hands-on way. Participants included Emma S. Clark Memorial Library; Avalon Park and Preserve and the Avalon Skylab; the Long Island Explorium; the Three Village STEM teachers, tech teachers and elementary librarians; the WM robotics team, the Islandbots; the Science Olympiad teams from the district’s secondary school buildings and the Ward Melville Computer Science Club.

The foundation has recently been established as a nonprofit corporation to benefit STEM activities in the Three Village community. Its flagship programs are Science Olympiad and the Ward Melville Iron Patriots robotics team. 

Celebrating New Master Teachers

Celebrating New Master Teachers photo
Three educators – Minnesauke Elementary School STEM teacher Sean Dowling and Ward Melville High School chemistry teachers Samantha Chereb Bradshaw and James Dornicik from the Three Village Central School District – have been recognized as New York State STEM Master Teachers. 

Mr. Dowling is the first district elementary school teacher selected for this honor, as this is a new aspect of the program and only eight teachers on Long Island have received this honor. 

The New York State Master Teacher program is a competitive program and only selects veteran educators who demonstrate a commitment to student achievement, promote STEM inside and outside the classroom, seek out professional development opportunities and work with colleagues to improve STEM instruction.

“Education is the cornerstone to success, and it is the brilliant, dedicated teachers in New York who make a difference in countless lives and inspire the leaders of tomorrow,” Governor Cuomo said. “Congratulations to the newest members of the Master Teacher program, who will join the ranks of the top educators in the state as they work to further their skills and their impact on students in every corner of this great state.”

‘Mamma Mia’ Comes to Ward Melville

‘Mamma Mia’ Comes to Ward Melville photo

Audiences were transported to a colorful, distant land as Ward Melville High School student-actors and musicians put on a pitch-perfect performance of the Broadway hit “Mamma Mia” this December.

Under the direction of Linda Contino, the students rehearsed for months in preparation for opening night. With the help of a pit orchestra of student-musicians, the actors sang such classic songs as “Dancing Queen,” “S.O.S.,” and “The Winner Takes It All,” and kept attendances dancing in their seats as the comical plot unfolded on stage. 

Workshops With Women in Computer Science

In honor of Computer Science Week, Arrowhead and Minnesauke Elementary Schools received a special visit from Stony Brook University’s Women in Computer Science Club. During the workshops, the college students shared some information about their club and computer science in general, then taught the students some text-based coding in JavaScript. 

VIDEO: Champions Are Made Here


Superintendent’s Letter – Vaping Policy


Becoming Ambassadors for Acceptance

Becoming Ambassadors for Acceptance photo
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Working as ambassadors for peace and acceptance, five secondary students from the Three Village Central School District recently were selected to participate in this year’s Suffolk County Long Island’s Leaders of Tomorrow Conference. 

The conference was facilitated by the organization, Erase Racism, and focused on preparing high school students to become leaders and advocates in the fight for equity within Long Island public schools.

Throughout the workshop, the students attendees – Jennifer Cabrera (ninth-grader, Murphy), Katelyn Giordano (ninth-grader, Gelinas), Meredith Bushman (junior, Ward Melville High School), Katherine Woo (junior, Ward Melville High School) and Renee Clairvoyant (senior, Ward Melville High School) – engaged in interactive dialogues, workshops and leadership development training. Topics explored included the history of specific policies, techniques for embracing diversity and outlets for student advocacy. 

Minnesauke Sixth-Graders’ Gift to Furry Friends

Minnesauke Sixth-Graders’ Gift to Furry Friends photo
Minnesauke Elementary School sixth-graders from Patricia Woods’ class lent a helping hand to some furry friends this holiday season. 

The students rolled up their sleeves and baked over 200 biscuits for the Little Shelter Animal Rescue and Adoption Center. As a follow-up to their effort, Maryellen Moll from the organization recently visited the class with a dachshund named Sarina that is waiting to be placed in a “forever home.”  

During the visit, Ms. Moll spoke with the students about humane education, volunteerism and pet care. The students enthusiastically welcomed the pair to the class and were eager to learn about the work of the shelter, before presenting the visitors with a few extra supplies and donations they collected. 

Balloons Fly Over Mount

Balloons Fly Over Mount photo

In a colorful and funfilled way to celebrate the holiday season, W.S. Mount Elementary School students used their creative talents to fashion paper balloons that would rival even the best displayed during this year’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Depending on grade level, the students then worked collaboratively to create large-scale designs that they proudly displayed throughout the parade route. Additionally, several students performed within the bus circle in front of the school, just as many do during the traditional parade in New York. 

Developing an Attitude for Gratitude

Developing an Attitude for Gratitude photo

In correlation with Thanksgiving, Nassakeag and Setauket Elementary School students in Kerry Diana’s health classes completed a project focused on Attitude for Gratitude: recognizing and expressing thanks and appreciation in all parts of life, for both big and small things.

The students played a gratitude game which was essentially “pick-up sticks with a purpose.” The challenge in the game is to successfully pick up a colored stick without moving any others, but the added challenge for scoring the points associated with the stick is report to the group and record on their gratitude scorecard something they are thankful for associated with the category assigned to the stick color. Red is for a person, yellow for a place, blue for an item and green for anything.  

The additional challenge for the students was to think to themselves about why they are thankful for the person, place or thing. They did not have to report that to the group if they were not comfortable doing so.  

A Place To Be Thankful

A Place To Be Thankful photo
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Three Village Central School District’s pre-kindergarten students in Maureen MacDowell’s and Beth Diviney’s classes at Nassakeag Elementary School fashioned Thanksgiving placemats for residents at the Long Island State Veterans Home in Stony Brook. They used their creativity to personalize the pieces, which they hoped help to bring cheer to those celebrating the traditional November holiday.

Serving Up Career Options at Murphy

Serving Up Career Options at Murphy photo
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R.C. Murphy Junior High School eighth- and ninth-graders are not only dining on tasty meals during their lunch periods this year, but are also learning about a number of exciting professional opportunities through a program called the Career Café. 

The event, which is being held several times throughout the year, enables interested students the chance to meet with local professionals about their careers in small settings. During the most recent program, students learned about the world of graphic design from Allison Schwartz, who works at Stony Brook University. 

Ms. Schwartz provided insight into her chosen career path, noting how she evolved into the position she currently holds as well as how she extends her passion to her freelance business. Additionally, she noted how she had a passion for design at an early age and how she has followed that drive since taking advanced art classes in high school. 

The initiative is being organized by school counselor Jessica Ennis. 

Reflections From Artistic Honorees

Reflections From Artistic Honorees photo

Seven Minnesauke Elementary School students have been selected as award winners in this year’s PTA Reflections contest.

For the competition, students across New York State were invited to submit original works of art in one of six categories: dance choreography, film, literature, music, photography and visual arts. This year’s theme for the contest was Heroes Around Me.

As school level winners, these students’ entries will now advance to the Suffolk County level. The district congratulates the following students and wishes them good luck on the next level of judging.


Award of Excellence: first-grader Kiera Carlson 

Title of piece: “My Papa”

“My papa is my hero because he fought for our country.

Award of Excellence: third-grader Jamie Skaggs

Title of piece: “My Grandpa”

“My grandpa is my hero because he is a firefighter and he has saved many lives!”



Award of Excellence: second-grader Olivia Lisa

Title of piece: “School Heroes”

“The school heroes are very important. Janitors help keep the place clean, security makes sure everyone’s safe, teachers teach and the nurse helps everyone stay healthy.” 

Award of Excellence: third-grader Holden Cone

Title of piece: “My Parents Equal Superheroes”

“My parents are smart, kind, and caring. They take care of me and they love me. I always feel protected by them. They seem like superheroes to me.”

Award of Excellence: sixth-grader Ally Becker

Title of piece: “Heroes Around the World”

“A hero is not just someone in a cape who flies around the world and seems to always save it from destruction. A hero is someone who has the superpower to make someone smile or to brighten their day. I made this collage to show that we are all heroes because we all have the superpower to make someone happier.”

Award of Merit: sixth-grader Soraya Masrour

Title of piece: “Bee the Hero”

“My drawing represents that bees are my hero. If we did not have bees, there would be no food. Imagine something that small saving the world. Bees are my heroes because they pollinate our food supply, they can make their homes out of practically nothing, and they make honey. Bees are saving the world as we speak.”



Award of Excellence: sixth-grader Benjamin Hoffman

Title of piece: “The Call”

“To me, the heroes among us are the first responders: police, firemen, EMS and military. What inspired me was thinking how these heroes all start their day, just like us. However, when they get ‘the call’ and it’s time to go to work, the adrenaline starts pumping! It amazed me that these men and women deal with life and death, call after call, each day. I wrote and played and recorded this song myself. It is the first song I wrote and recorded and I dedicate it to the first responders among us.”


Teachers Take the Stage

Teachers Take the Stage photo

Three Village Central School District music teachers took to the stage this November to showcase their impressive skills and perform in this year’s Back to Rock Concert at R.C. Murphy Junior High School.

The standing room only, sold-out show included performances by music teachers from throughout the district and served as a fundraiser for student scholarships and to support department initiatives. Annually, this event as well as the Boosters membership drive have raised thousands of dollars to support music in Three Village across grades K-12. 

Food Drive Gobbles Up Donations

Food Drive Gobbles Up Donations photo
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Ward Melville High School’s Key Club members rallied their peers and teachers together this November for one of the school’s old-time traditions – the Turkey Teacher Food Drive Competition.
For the past 10 years, the club has organized this event to not only benefit local families but also those in the regional area who are in need this holiday season. Each year, members of the teaching and support staff volunteer to have their name on a box outside the library that can be filled with food. The teacher who collects the least amount of food wears a comical turkey hat the last day before Thanksgiving break. The teacher who collects the most food gets to wear a crown.
This year, the school collected thousands of nonperishable food items, which were donated to the district’s school food pantries as well as food pantries and soup kitchens in the surrounding area.
At the end of the drive, teacher Enrico Chicon was named the “loser” and wore the creative turkey hat, while this year’s “winner” was Bryan Miller for the third year in a row. Student Michael Lewis was honored as the individual who brought in the most items (more than 400). 

Turkeys Hiding in Plain Sight

Turkeys Hiding in Plain Sight photo
Third-grade students in Jen Betz’s class at Nassakeag Elementary School in the Three Village School District put a spin on a traditional Thanksgiving menu item – turkey – through a creative writing project. 

The students worked to disguise paper turkeys and write about their plan to escape turkey dinner. Some students transformed into bags of popcorn, sailors, police officers and even Minnie Mouse. The completed projects were hung outside the classroom for all to enjoy and admire. 

Giving During the Holidays

Giving During the Holidays photo

To give back to those in need this holiday season, many students throughout the Three Village Central School District took part in community service projects.

At Minnesauke Elementary School, Bryan Mandracchia’s third-grade class created food baskets for local families to enjoy this Thanksgiving holiday. They collected some of the holiday’s traditional fixings, including stuffing mix, canned vegetables, cornbread and gravy. 

Additionally, the fourth-graders in Erin Berman’s class fashioned colorful baskets of fruit for Echo Arms Adult Home. The beautiful creations were fitted in several baskets and delivered in time for the Thanksgiving holiday. 

Sunday, January 20, 2019   |  District Home