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Family Code Night Draws Hundreds of Students and Families

Family Code Night Draws Hundreds of Students and Families photo

It was a night of technology and fun for district students and their families when the second annual Family Code Night kicked off on March 12.

Students coded on iPads, built structures with Keva Planks, played with different types of robots and more at the event, which attracted a large crowd at Glen Cove High School. Parents and families members were engaged as they embraced the technology being learned at school. The makerspace section, equipped with a variety of cardboard shapes in different sizes, offered youngsters an opportunity to use their imaginations.  

The wonderful event was organized by district STREAM (science, technology, research, engineering, arts and math) teachers Ken Altamirano, Cheryl Carmody, Jessica McKenna and Giselle Taylor, Coordinator of Science Alexa Doeschner and Director of Instructional Technology Justin Lander. A great time was had by all!

Artwork of Deasy Student Selected for All-County Exhibit

Artwork of Deasy Student Selected for All-County Exhibit photo
The artwork of Deasy School’s very own Mikayla Schnitzer was chosen to be shown at the 2019 Art Supervisors Association’s Nassau All-County Art Exhibit. This exhibit provides a showcase for the most impressive and diverse variety of two-dimensional student artwork. Congratulations!

Success for Mock Trial Team

Success for Mock Trial Team photo
The Glen Cove Mock Trial team recently participated in their first match of the year, facing off against Baldwin in the New York State Bar Association’s Mock Trial tournament.

Team members Noemy Annunziata, Angelina Bevernijk Holden, Elijah James, Nicole Khaimov and Isabelle Unger argued the petitioner’s side in a case about succession rights for a rent-controlled apartment. The team put forth a solid effort, with the judge commending their preparation and presentation, especially since this was the first match for many of the students. Though the team lost this match, they’re looking forward to improving and moving forward

Glen Cove CSD voters defeat bond referendum

On Tuesday, March 12, residents of the Glen Cove City School District defeated a $84,669,818 bond referendum that would have supported major repairs, renovations and expansions throughout the Glen Cove City School District. The final vote was 1,176 Yes and 1,558 No.

“While we are obviously disappointed with the outcome of the vote, we thank all those who voted,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Maria L. Rianna. “The needs and scope of work outlined in the bond are real. All of our schools require major repairs and renovations that must still be addressed.”

“The Board of Education would also like to thank all the community members that voted, as well as central administration and the Bond Committee, for their hard work and dedication to identifying the needs of our school district. We all have a commitment to the success of our students and improving our schools,” said Board of Education President Gail Nedbor-Gross. “We will be addressing and analyzing the results immediately, and how we can move forward within the coming days.”

The Board of Education and administration will continue working on developing a plan for a bond and facilities maintenance and repairs, which will be shared and discussed with the community.


Student Artwork Exhibited at ASA Art Show

art slider
Twenty-four district students had their artwork exhibited at the Art Supervisors Association’s 15th Annual Art Show on Sunday, March 10 at Farmingdale State College.

The ASA is a professional organization of art supervisors and administrators that represent principally the Nassau County area. A nonprofit advocacy group for education in the visual arts, ASA is active in the promotion of quality art instruction at all educational levels and provides a forum for ideas relating to art education. 

The art department has chosen Anissa Rosado as the 2019 ASA Scholarship recipient. Congratulations to all students!


Collaborative Lessons Ready Students for Cultural Arts Experience

Collaborative Lessons Ready Students for Cultural Arts Experience photo

On March 1, Gribbin School students were treated to a cultural arts show at the Tilles Center, thanks to the Gribbin School PTA. The Erth’s Prehistoric Aquarium Adventure show incorporated movement, music, puppetry, art, technology and science.

Leading up to the event, special area teachers worked together on activities designed to deepen the meaning of the performance experience, using the Tilles Center Arts-in-Education Aesthetic Model. Art teacher LeeAnn Palazzo had students create art projects that aligned with the creatures presented in the performance. Music teacher JoAnn Criblez and physical education teacher Mark Checola collaborated on a team lesson that had the students moving through space and working cooperatively as big, prehistoric creatures. A great time was had by all!

Photography Students Enter Prestigious Competition

Photography Students Enter Prestigious Competition photo

Once again, Mrs. Melissa Johnides’ Advanced Photography class will be entering work in the Photographic Society of America’s Youth Showcase. The students’ images will first be judged by the PSA’s Long Island chapter and will then move on to the next level of the competition, with the chance to be showcased both on the PSA’s website and at its annual national conference. Several Glen Cove students have made it that far in the past few years, so we are excited to see what this year’s competition brings!

Landing Students Learn to Cultivate Kindness

Landing Students Learn to Cultivate Kindness photo
Landing Students Learn to Cultivate Kindness photo 2
Landing Students Learn to Cultivate Kindness photo 3
Landing Students Learn to Cultivate Kindness photo 4
Students at Landing Elementary took part in an inspirational assembly about kindness, treating others with respect and paying it forward when Mr. Richard Specht Jr., the founder of the ReesSpecht Life Foundation, visited their school.

The Cultivate Kindness school program was created to teach children about how being kind to one another can leave a lasting impact. Its creation stems from tragedy. On Oct. 27, 2012, while preparing for Hurricane Sandy, the Specht family lost their son Rich Edward-Ehmer Specht (Rees) in a backyard pond drowning. Through the kindness of many within the community, especially Kelly Landscaping, which covered the pond, the Spechts’ learned how acts of kindness can help others see the positive during a hard time. The family wanted to do something positive for the community and decided to pay it forward with random acts of kindness. Mr. Specht’s daughters came up with a goal of creating 500 random acts of kindness. After the community’s reaction to the first round of acts of kindness, they were even more inspired to help others and have surpassed that number.

Mr. Specht, a former middle school science teacher, made his message fun and engaging. Students were able to see how kindness can spread and come back to you like a boomerang. He also showed the students a science demonstration on how negative feelings and behavior can affect others. Mr. Specht poured different liquids into glass beakers to form a dark liquid (negative feelings), then turned changed those negative feelings back to clear liquid (positive feelings) by adding another substance. The students were amazed by this science experiment and were inspired to treat others with kindness. Students were encouraged to help others and talk to someone who may be sitting alone.

Mr. Specht also wrote a children’s book, “A Little Rees Specht Cultivates Kindness,” about a boy, Rees, who spreads kindness to other kids just like a seed. With each act of kindness the seed grew and grew to make the world beautiful again. He also wrote a second book about bullying and an animation series to go with the books that will be coming out soon.  

The Landing PTA generously purchased a few books for the teachers to share with their students. Mr. Specht wanted each classroom teacher to have a copy so they could share the story of kindness each year. He planted the first seed of kindness by donating books to each classroom teacher. Before the assembly, teachers read and shared the story with the children. Classroom teachers and students wrote thank-you cards and letters showing their appreciation. 

After the assembly, students helped the custodial staff clean up the chairs and prepare for the APR for lunch. Students were left with a card to help spread Rees’ story and spread kindness within Landing and the Glen Cove community. Thank you to the PTA and the Cultural Arts Committee for bringing such an inspirational guest to Landing to spread an amazing message to all students and staff.  


Local Pottery Artist Visits Ceramics Students

Local Pottery Artist Visits Ceramics Students photo
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Local Pottery Artist Visits Ceramics Students photo 3
Local Pottery Artist Visits Ceramics Students photo 4
Local Pottery Artist Visits Ceramics Students photo 5
Ceramics II students at Glen Cove High School were treated to a visit by local pottery artist Patricia Bridges of Bridges Pottery in Port Washington on Feb. 26. 

Ms. Bridges demonstrated wheel throwing techniques and shared some of her beautiful work with the students, some of which was from a collection she was commissioned to create for the 2018 U.S. Open in Shinnecock Hills Golf Club in Southampton. 

Pottery has been a lifelong passion for Bridges, and she enjoys coming to high schools because that is where she realized her love for ceramics. Some students were able to work on the wheel as she gave them tips and advice. 

Art teacher Vicki Gordon said she organized the visit to provide students with an authentic experience of meeting someone who has made their passion into their profession. 

“We have so many talented students in the ceramics program, and there are many career paths and options for people who can think abstractly and solve problems creatively, as we do in ceramics,” Ms. Gordon said. 

The students thoroughly enjoyed seeing Ms. Bridges create pieces right before their eyes.

PARP-O-Lympics at Landing

PARP-O-Lympics at Landing photo

Landing School students concluded their participation in the PTA’s Pick A Reading Partner program, which asks a partner to read with a child for at least 20 minutes daily, stressing that reading can be fun as well as informative.

The theme this year was Color Your World With Reading. Students did a wonderful job and were rewarded for collectively reading 40,000 minutes with the school’s first PARP-O-Lympics. Activities included a mummy wrap, a hula-hoop contest, trashketball, over and under, a hula-hoop chain and an adult/teacher knockout competition. 

R.M. Finley Drama Club Presents: Zombie Prom (Atomic Edition)


Play-Doh Enhances Lab Work at Finley

Play-Doh Enhances Lab Work at Finley photo
Seventh-graders in Donald Ingegno’s class at Finley Middle School have been busy conducting labs as part of their classroom learning.  

Mr. Ingegno incorporated Play-Doh into class instruction to reinforce students’ coordination, focus and motor skills. The first of the two labs was during Unit Four: Atoms and Periodic Table. The students built their own atoms and labeled its parts: nucleus, protons, neutrons and electrons. The class also used M&M’s to show the elections in their electron configuration. 

The second lab kicked off Unit Six, where the students were introduced to potential and kinetic energy. The class used an animated roller coaster as their model to help them identify which parts of the roller coaster have potential and kinetic energies. They then drafted a drawing of their own roller coaster, labeling the parts that identified the potential and kinetic energies. Finally students had fun building their own roller coasters out of Play-Doh.

Each lab concludes with a write-up that connects to the scientific method and questions that prompt student engagement suggestions on how they would change the lab.        

Deasy Students Celebrate 100th Day of School

Deasy Students Celebrate 100th  Day of School photo

Deasy School commemorated the 100th day of school with a variety of math, art and physical activities that had students smiling.

As part of the celebration, students enjoyed creating structures using 100 different items, such as cups, dominoes, wood blocks and Legos. They also snacked on a pretzel rod and two fudge-striped cookies, which represented the number 100, painted pictures of the number 100 and used the number 1 and two 0s to make unique artwork. In addition to counting and other activities, the students completed 100 exercises.

Many children made the day more memorable by dressing as if they were 100 years old, sporting suspenders, shawls and spectacles.  


Vocabulary Parade at Connolly

Vocabulary Parade at Connolly photo

As part of its Pick A Reading Partner celebration, Connolly School students read “Miss Alaineus: A Vocabulary Disaster,” by Debra Fraisier. The students were inspired to create costumes based on different vocabulary words and had a wonderful time parading around the school showing off their unique creations.


Community Readers at Gribbin

Community Readers at Gribbin 1
Community readers were welcomed at Gribbin School on Feb. 13. The group volunteered to visit and read to the students as part of the school’s Pick A Reading Partner celebration. Principal Francine Santoro expressed her gratitude to all those who volunteered their time and shared their love of reading with the school’s students.  

Finley Student Qualifies for LI Regional Bee

Finley Middle School sixth-grader Mert Suyabatmoz has qualified for participation in the Long Island Regional Spelling Bee at the Pless Center for Performing Arts Auditorium at St. Joseph’s College on March 20.

The champion of the Long Island Regional Spelling Bee will advance to the 2019 Scripps National Spelling Bee in National Harbor, Maryland, from May 26-31. Good luck! 

Seniors Learn How to Vote

Seniors Learn How to Vote photo

Glen Cove High School senior social studies classes were visited by Nassau County Board of Elections representatives on Feb. 11. The presentation focused on the importance of voting, how the voting process works, absentee ballots and registering any students who were of voting age. It concluded with a mock election using an actual polling machine. Students voted on different toppings on a pizza.



Seeing Our Sun Through a Solar Telescope

Fifth-grade students at Connolly and Landing schools participated in Vanderbilt Museum’s Exploring the Universe: Traveling Astronomy Outreach Program. 

Facilitated by science educator Roger Ledgister, students took part in a lesson within their own classroom to learn more about the sun from a real astronomer. According to the New York State Science Learning Standards, students in fifth grade are expected to study the solar system and the sun. To align to these standards, science curriculum was written this past summer by fifth-grade teachers Ms. Cheryl Carmody, Ms. Denise Reynolds and Ms. Susan Stanco, and in consultation with science coordinator Alexa Doeschner. 

Through this Vanderbilt program, students were able to widen their knowledge about our own medium-sized star, the sun, and had the chance to see details on the sun’s surface through a solar telescope. Some of the details the students had the chance to see included granulations and a sun prominence coming off from its side. Fifth-grade teachers Mr. Glaviano, Ms. Gonzalez, Ms. Harechmak, Ms. Hazen, Ms. Hellman, Ms. Liptzin, Mr. Monteleone, Ms. Pawloski, Ms. Reynolds and Ms. Stanco graciously accommodated Mr. Ledgister in their classroom, and accompanied students outside as both students and teachers got a chance to peek at the surface of the sun.

Fifth-Graders Learn About the Holocaust

Fifth-Graders Learn About the Holocaust photo

Fifth-grade students from Connolly and Landing schools recently visited the Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County, where they participated in a guided instructional tour of the museum and heard testimony from Felice Katz.

Ms. Katz’s mother, Etunia “Ethel” Bauer Katz, grew up in Buczacz, Poland, which is now part of Ukraine. The German army entered the town in 1941, followed closely by mobile killing squads who murdered Ethel’s twin brother along with other young Jewish men in a forest near the town. The rest of her family escaped immediate destruction by hiding in barns and fields for several years, relying upon their non-Jewish neighbors for food. Ethel’s family members were eventually murdered in their hiding place, and she narrowly escaped and survived the last few months of the war on her own. The Soviet Army liberated her town in 1944, and after the war, Ethel immigrated to the United States, where she raised a family. She has written a memoir of her experiences during the Holocaust, “Our Tomorrows Never Came.”  

The Glen Cove social studies department and the Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County have created a civic education program beginning in fifth grade that promotes and empowers our students to become upstanders. The center provided documents to all teachers and building principals that offered a brief overview of the Holocaust along with a glossary of words to help the students prepare for the trip. The teachers did a fantastic job preparing the students with the historical content. Kudos to all the fifth-grade teachers and building principals Ben Roberts and Julie Mullan for preparation and planning.


Speakers Share History With District Students


Glen Cove High School and Finley Middle School students were visited by NY1 news reporter and author Cheryl Wills and Sheryl Goodine, a former district administrator and president of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Commission, in honor of Black History Month.

Mrs. Wills took students on a compelling journey through the lens of her childhood. During the 1970s, as she sat in social studies class learning about confederates in the Civil War, she never learned that she was a direct descendant of an enslaved man named Sandy Wills, who also served in the Civil War with President Lincoln’s United States Colored Troops. She learned of the connection when she began researching her family’s history after her father’s death. During her presentation, Mrs. Wills encouraged students to learn their families’ history and to embrace who they are.  

Ms. Goodine, who has deep roots in Glen Cove, also shared her family history with the students. Her father, James Davis, marched with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and he, along with the Glen Cove NAACP, was instrumental in desegregating Glen Cove City Schools and the city’s fire department. 

The presentations concluded with students asking questions of Mrs. Wills and Ms. Goodine. District Coordinator of Social Studies Sheena Jacob said the presentation reinforced the importance of remembering Black History Month and civic action.  

Click here to watch the GCTV Friday Morning News covering Cheryl Wills' visit

Hudson Hits Basketball Milestone

Hudson Hits Basketball Milestone photo
Congratulations to Glen Cove High School senior Trinity Hudson, who scored her 1,000th point in the Nassau A-III basketball game against Levittown Division High School on Jan. 29. 

Trinity’s 1,000th point came on a layup in the first quarter. She scored a total of 24 points in the game. This huge accomplishment reflects her dedication and commitment over the past six years to the girls’ varsity basketball program. Among the many honors she has received thus far in her career at Glen Cove High School, she is currently the leading scorer in Nassau County, averaging 24.5 points per game, and third in scoring on Long Island. Furthermore, Trinity has amassed a total of 1,077 points, which makes her the second leading all-time scorer in Glen Cove girls basketball history behind her sister, Taylah Hudson.

Earlier this year, Trinity signed her national letter of intent to play basketball at Mercy College in Dobbs Ferry, New York, on a full scholarship.   

Elementary Students Learn the Survival Strategies of Squid

Elementary Students Learn the Survival Strategies of Squid photo

During the months of December and January third-grade students from both Connolly and Landing took part in a lesson series to learn about the survival strategies of squid.

This lesson series was written by District Science Coordinator Alexa Doeschner to align to the third-grade New York State Science Learning Standard for Life Science (3-LS4-2). Within this standard, students learn about variations in characteristics of different species and how these characteristics provide advantages for survival. In the first lesson, students participated in a jigsaw activity where different groups read about different anatomical parts of squid and how the structure dictated the function of these parts. Each group used chart paper to create a model of what they had learned and used their model to teach their learnings to the rest of their classmates.

After students developed an understanding of structure and function, they had the opportunity to participate in a follow-up lesson in which they dissected supermarket-bought squid in small groups. Students also had the choice to opt out of the actual dissection and were instead engaged in learning about a colossal squid examination in New Zealand. Students were so incredibly engaged with the dissection that they wanted to perform extended activities, such as separating the two parts of the beak to compare one to the other. Students were observed making connections and predicting that the size of the pen of the squid, the small remnant of a shell located inside the body, would vary in size depending on the size of the squid. The lessons were co-taught with Ms. Doeschner and third-grade teachers in both buildings, including Mr. Arnone, Ms. Barsic, Ms. Buehre, Ms. Drennan, Ms. Flower, Ms. Mazza, Ms. Oliveira, Ms. Pilewski, Ms. Simone, Ms. Tenke, Ms. Topolovec and Ms. Villella. 

Teachers were enthusiastic to turn their classrooms into a science lab space where students had the unique opportunity to learn anatomy from real-life specimens. 

Emergency Pillowcase Preparedness

Emergency Pillowcase Preparedness photo

Connolly and Landing school students participated in the American Red Cross’ Pillowcase Project when American Red Cross AmeriCorps representatives visited their schools on Jan. 22.

The Pillowcase Project teaches children coping skills to help them deal with an emergency situation and also offers tips and tools to help them prepare for emergencies. It’s made possible thanks to a grant from Disney and came to fruition after American Red Cross volunteers witnessed victims of Hurricane Katrina packing personal belongings in pillowcases when leaving their homes. 

Representatives explained the importance of having an escape plan in the event of a home fire, the need for smoke detectors in every room, tips on what to do if there’s a hurricane and more to students. The youngsters were also trained through the program’s three core principles, Learn, Practice and Share: learn how emergencies happen and how to stay safe when they do; practice what you learn so you’ll be ready when an emergency happens and share what you’ve learned so that everyone knows how to stay safe in an emergency.

After the discussion, students decorated pillowcases they received from the organization. The students were encouraged to draw pictures of important items they wanted to bring with them in an emergency. This important program was brought to the district thanks to Landing physical education teacher Karen Serani, who is a volunteer member of the American Red Cross. 

Deasy Students Create E-Books on Ecosystems

Deasy Students Create E-Books on Ecosystems photo

Second-graders in Michael Battaglia’s class at Deasy worked with STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) teacher Jessica McKenna to conduct research on ecosystems and environments and how they change over time. After concluding their research, students learned to use Book Creator and made an e-book on their specific area of study. To view the students’ work, click here:

Spring 2019 Adult Ed Brochure


Gribbin Students Spread Dr. King’s Message


First-grade students at Gribbin School created a video to commemorate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and to share his message of love, peace and equality. Watch the video below.


Spelling Bee Success for Finley Sixth-Grader

Spelling Bee Success for Finley Sixth-Grader photo
Spelling Bee Success for Finley Sixth-Grader photo 2
Spelling Bee Success for Finley Sixth-Grader photo 3
Spelling Bee Success for Finley Sixth-Grader photo 4
Spelling Bee Success for Finley Sixth-Grader photo 5

Finley Middle School students went head-to-head in a schoolwide spelling bee on Jan. 18. Participants who were named winners of their own team’s respective bees faced off during the competition. They included students Valerie Acosta (Mr. Kocienda), Jessica Callaghan (Mr. McGahan), Amy Cruz (Ms. Durham), Logan Grech (Ms. Frisch), Elijah Roditi (Ms. Treder) and Mert Suyabatmaz (Ms. McGrath).

Congratulations to sixth-grader Mert, who was crowned winner, and Logan, who was named runner-up. Mert will take an online exam in competition for qualification for the Long Island regional at St Joseph’s College.   

A special thanks to judges and pronouncers, and teachers Jackie Burnett, Rebecca Carfora and Jason Flashner.


Coat Collection at Connolly

Coat Collection at Connolly photo
Connolly School Student Council encouraged family and friends to donate warm coats for distribution to local families. Fifty-three coats were collected for those in need.

Deasy Second-Graders Study Different Communities

Deasy Second-Graders Study Different Communities photo

As part of the social studies unit on different types of communities, second-graders at Deasy School used various materials from the classroom Maker Box to create unique versions of rural, urban and suburban communities. The students had to decide which community they were making and include landmarks found in that type of community. Students added items such as skyscrapers, taxis, buses, houses with yards, barns, farm animals, roads and trees to their projects. Fun was had by all!

Select Chorale’s ‘Star-Spangled Banner’ to Highlight Sporting Events

Select Chorale’s ‘Star-Spangled Banner’ to Highlight Sporting Events

The Glen Cove High School athletic and music departments are proud to announce that the Select Chorale has teamed up to record a beautiful version of “The Star-Spangled Banner” that will be played at the school’s athletic events. Athletic Director Peter Cardone expressed his gratitude to Choral Director Edward Norris, the technology department and the Select Chorale for making this amazing rendition.

Click here to listen to the recording

Digital Citizenship Symposium Coming to Glen Cove

Digital Citizenship Symposium 1
Digital Citizenship Symposium 1
    The district will host an Eduscape Digital Citizenship Symposium at Glen Cove High School on March 30 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Check-in begins at 8:30 a.m.
    Topics include “Keeping Students’ Data Safe,” “Social-Emotional Learning and Digital Citizenship,” “Digital Footprints – Keeping the Trail Clean,” “A Problem-Based Learning Approach to Digital Citizenship,” “Leading Digital Citizenship: A Districtwide Model,” “Building a Culture of Digital Citizenship,” “The Role of Family Support to Digital Citizenship” and “To Screen or Not to Screen: Maintaining a Balance.”  
    This symposium is suggested for superintendents, associate superintendents, directors of curriculum, principals, guidance teams, PTA and Board of Education members. Admission is $199.