Sewanhaka district students honored at awards ceremony

Sewanhaka district students honored at awards ceremony
Photo by John Nugent

By John Nugent

The Sewanhaka school district presented awards to students of its five high schools for
outstanding scholastic and athletic achievement before the Board of Education meeting last
Tuesday evening.

Students from Sewanhaka, Carey, Floral Park Memorial, New Hyde Park Memorial and Elmont high schools were recognized for their academic excellence in math, science, languages and other disciplines as well as for championship performances on various athletic teams.

Awards were also earned by students who participated in competitive events beyond the
classroom. Sewanhaka district students distinguished themselves at the Nassau County
Comptroller’s Competition, the Molloy College Science Fair, the New York City Enterprise Trade Show, the Long Island Math Fair and Skills USA.

The five schools also were represented by many athletes who earned all-county and all-
conference honors.

District Athletic Director Matt McLees proudly presented the athletic awards.

In addition, Alex Soupious was named Nassau County Coach of the Year in girls basketball and Sean Boyle earned recognition for conference Coach of the year in boys basketball.
Following the awards ceremony, Superintendent of Schools Ralph Ferrie, who is retiring at the end of the school year, said in an interview, “This is what I’ll miss. It’s all about the kids.”

The Board of Education opened its meeting with a recognition to faculty members who completed a program on cultural diversity. The program, co-sponsored by Adelphi University, aims to help the school community gain a better understanding of a district population that represents many different cultural backgrounds.

A short film, produced by high school students, about professional development of teachers was shown at the board meeting. The film highlighted the sharing of ideas between teachers as a key element of success in the classroom. It stressed that individual courses should not be isolated, and an integrative approach to all academic disciplines is very important.

A Franklin Square resident, Michelle DeLeo, addressed the board about student eligibility for bus service.

DeLeo, who was supported by neighbors Rosaria Massarotto and Dawn Tricario, received a
letter from the district saying that her children would not be entitled to bus transportation to school because she lives within the 1.5-mile limit from the building. She stated that “her children must walk to school across heavily trafficked streets” and requested that the school board revise the mileage restriction.

Bernadette Gaffney, an attorney to the board, responded that mileage limitations are dictated by the state. The school district does not have the power to change them and would risk forfeiting state aid for bus service by doing so.

The board has the discretion to determine how distance is “measured,” that is from what point on a resident’s property to what point on the school grounds, but cannot dictate the mileage itself, Gaffney added.

School board President David Del Santo sympathized with DeLeo’s problem and suggested
that she work through her state legislators to change the rules on this issue.


No posts to display


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here