Earlier this month at the National Down Syndrome Society’s annual Buddy Walk, Team North Shore grew to comprise many students and their siblings, as well as parents and teachers from Sea Cliff Elementary School. The team even included a four-legged friend.
Teacher Mark Mihopulos said, “We celebrated Down Syndrome Awareness Month (October) by fundraising online, walking a mile as a team, and enjoying music and festivities at the bay side Tanner Park in Copiague.”
In the spirit of the fall harvest season, and to get a little lesson about agriculture, first-graders at Gribbin Elementary School in Glen Cove recently took a field trip to the Fort Salonga Farm where they took a tour of the apple orchard and had the opportunity to pick their own apples. “Students learned about grafting and how to pick an apple and that there are important helpers at the orchard such as bumblebees, bats, bluebirds, and owls,” said Gribbin teacher Antoinette Hatzopoulos, whose class was among those making the trip. Students also conducted apple science experiments, and as a culminating tasty treat, put on their proverbial chef hats and learned how to make apple pies and applesauce.
There are two candidates running for one vacant seat on the Glen Cove Board of Education. The special election will take place on Monday, Oct. 21 at Robert M. Finley Middle School. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Academically the district is in a similar situation as all the other Long Island districts. Implementation of the common core and improved test scores are the challenge. Cooperation and communication between teachers across grade levels needs to be improved assuring that students are getting what they need not only to pass tests but to understand the subjects they are taught.
We have an extraordinary teaching staff in this district. Many of our teachers have been placed in a difficult position by a school board which allowed an extended investigation which was poorly executed and reviewed by a law firm which had ties to the previous superintendent who initiated the investigation. This protracted inquiry has cost the district greatly in the morale of its staff and financially. The final cost of this investigation will be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. I will do whatever I can to halt the investigation and stop the continued wasting of our money.
I will work with the other board members to assure teachers are equipped with the resources they need to comply with the common core standards and raise test scores.
Unfortunately standardized testing has become a big part of the academic process. The state education department does not have an opt-out clause for parents. I personally support an opt-out option. I will request the board craft a resolution to be submitted to Governor Cuomo, our state legislators, the Commissioner of Education, and the Chancellor of the Board of Regents to stop the over-reliance on standardized tests as a measure of student performance and principal and teacher effectiveness. If enacted would be joining districts across Long Island and the state in this effort.
When it comes to the newly introduced state assessment exams that were administered to students in grades 3-8 last spring, North Shore Schools Superintendent Dr. Ed Melnick is not completely sold.
“My contention is that we need to re-evaluate the focus of the New York State Common Core assessment testing,” said Melnick at last Thursday night’s school board meeting. “I don’t believe in explicit test practices but believe in authentic learning experiences. There needs to be a balance between the two.”
On a beautiful September morning, thousands of students, faculty, parents, and community members enthusiastically lined up to kick-off the 9th Annual North Shore Schools Homecoming Parade at Glenwood Landing School. Leading the parade was the American Legion Glenwood Landing Post 336 followed by the North Shore Cheerleading team, NSHS Drum Line directed by David Soto, the Board of Education including Superintendent Dr. Edward Melnick, Assistant Superintendent for Instruction Rob Chlebicki, and Assistant Superintendent for Business Olivia Buatsi, the Booster Club, the Viking Foundation, various parent organizations, and the Glenwood Landing Fire Department, just to name a few.
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