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Former Falcon Headed to NCAA Championships


Former Falcon Tyler Liantonio, Class of 2016, will play in the NCAA Lacrosse Championships with his Merrimack College team.

Liantonio was a four-year starter and a major contributor on the Locust Valley lacrosse team, earning him the offensive MVP award on the first-ever County Championship lacrosse team in 2014. He also earned All-Conference and All-County Honorable Mention as a lacrosse player.     

This year, for Merrimack College he played in 19 games, started in 16 and has 20 goals and 6 assists.

Congratulations and good luck to Liantonio and his team when they take on Limestone College at Financial Field in Philadelphia on Sunday, May 26 at 1 p.m. 

Boys Varsity Lacrosse Heads to County Championships


The Boys Varsity Lacrosse team is heading back to Hofstra University to compete for the Nassau County Class C title after defeating Wantagh High School 12-5 in the semifinals on May 21.

Come cheer the Falcons on at Hofstra University on Tuesday, May 29 at 8:30 p.m. as they take on Cold Spring Harbor for the title. For tickets, visit

Go Falcons!

Select Chorus Has Golden Voices

The Locust Valley Middle School Select Chorus earned a Gold with Distinction rating, the highest rating possible, at the NYSSMA Major Festival held at Hofstra University on May 21.

This is the first year the middle school has had the select chorus, a club approved by the Board of Education to enhance and enrich student opportunities in the arts.

The club’s adviser, Allison Hungate Wood, said that earning the gold distinction during their first time participating in the event is an outstanding accomplishment. 

“I am incredibly proud of these dedicated and talented young singers,” Ms. Hungate Wood said.

Congratulations to the following members of the select chorus: Oliver Blaise, Stephanie Chi, Christopher Cooney, Emily Costello, Olivia Del Tatto, Alexander Diaz Gomez, Hope McQuiston, Elizabeth Neumeyer, Lindsay Nikolai, Reilly Souther, Francesca Speringo, Gianna Spinelli, Antonia Vitale and Brandon Warren.

Board of Education Meeting, Thursday, June 6, 7 p.m., MS/HS Mini-Theater

Board of Education Meeting, Thursday, June 6, 7 p.m., MS/HS Mini-Theater

LVCSD Community Supports 2019-2020 Budget



The community voted to approve the 2019-2020 budget:

Yes: 994

No: 804

Margaret Marchand and Joseph A. Zito were elected to the Board of Education for three year terms beginning July 1, 2019.

Margaret Marchand: 979

Carl A. Friedrich: 892

Joseph A. Zito: 1,032

Thank you Locust Valley community for supporting the school district.


Fifth Annual Flags for Freedom Honors Sgt. Robert Hendriks


Locust Valley High School’s fifth annual Flags for Freedom ceremony was marked by the traditional gifting of American flags to each high school senior by members of the Locust Valley and Bayville American Legions. However, the gathering held on May 20 in the school’s auditorium had even more meaning than those held in previous years, as the event honored fallen Marine Sgt. Robert Hendriks, a member of the Locust Valley High School Class of 2012.

Marked by speeches from school officials, veterans and students, the ceremony paid tribute to Sgt. Hendriks’ strong character, good nature and sensitive, kind soul. Senior Caitlin O’Hare joined honored guest U.S. Marine Staff Sgt. Cherise S. Herrara in remembering Sgt. Hendriks, based on descriptions from his friends and fellow Marines.

Caitlin said that he was an upstander, always looking to protect his friends and family. “When he put his mind to something, he would do it and do it well, making it no surprise that directly after graduation he enlisted in the United State Marines, sacrificing everything,” she said.

Staff Sgt. Herrara said that even though she did not know Sgt. Hendriks personally, he was her brother. She described his military career, explaining that his occupation was as an infantry machine gunner. While his life may have been taken, she said his legacy cannot be taken away. “People who knew him described as a young, tough man who was both kind and compassionate,” she said.

Flags for Freedom began at Locust Valley High School in 2015 as the brainchild of Operation Democracy President Kay Weninger, who had a vision to enrich the lives of high school students with knowledge of what the American flag means to our country. “I wanted to teach our students who our veterans were, who our active duty soldiers are, and I wanted to educate them about what Veterans Day was and what Memorial Day means,” she said.

Ms. Weninger told the audience of high school seniors and other guests that everything can’t be learned from books. “Today you will feel, and then you will remember this day,” she said. She also thanked the veterans who folded nearly 200 flags for the occasion.

Locust Valley’s Acting Superintendent Dr. Carl Bonuso shared personal memories from his time in the Army, recalling bringing the American flag to a mother after escorting her fallen son home to her. He shared what the flag means to him, describing the white stripes as a reminder of the beautiful and pure ideals of our nation, bordered by red to salute those whose blood was shed protecting that flag and the stars which lie in a sea of blue like the heavens in which our heroes, like Sgt. Hendriks, reside.

“They made their sacrifice so as to protect our rights to a life filled with liberty, and enabling us to pursue happiness. They have given you today, they have given you tomorrow and the day after that and the day after that, so that the generations that follow could enjoy these liberties,” Dr. Bonuso said.

Remarks from U.S. Marine Major Patrick Kelly and High School Principal Patrick DiClemente also brought meaning and emotion to the ceremony, which concluded with the presentation of the flags.

Members of the Bayville and Locust Valley American Legions lined up on the auditorium stage and handed the folded flags to each of the seniors, shaking their hands as the students thanked them not only for the gift, but for their service to our country.

The Locust Valley Central School District thanks Ms. Weninger, the veterans, the Locust Valley Parents’ Council and all of the guests that helped make the Flags for Freedom ceremony a memorable and unique experience, including the Locust Valley High School Band, which provided a beautiful patriotic musical interlude.

Regents Review Schedule

Please see attached Regents review schedule.



College Fair Helps Underclassmen Learn About Options


The high school gymnasium was packed on April 15 with college representatives manning tables covered in their school colors and displaying brochures, information cards and fun facts about their schools. More than 60 tables filled the room, offering something for everyone that visited.

The college fair allowed sophomores and juniors to learn about a variety of colleges and universities as well as facts about athletic recruitment, standardized test prep and military enrollment. The school counselors prepared a list of questions that students could ask to help them make the most of the fair.

High school guidance counselor Faith Keenan said that the college fair allows underclassmen to start getting an idea of what they are looking for before they have to submit applications in the fall of their senior year. “With so many schools in attendance, there is no risk in taking a brochure or asking a question, and often the answers to those questions help students narrow down what they are looking for in a college,” she said.

Ms. Keenan further explained that students may start to form relationships with the college representatives they meet, allowing them to email questions or make a good impression over the next year or two. “We invite a wide range of schools, from big to small and from geographically near to far,” she said.

Representatives from the United States Marine Corps and United States Army were also on hand to provide information about military options. Locust Valley’s Director of Physical Education, Health and Athletics Dr. Danielle Turner manned a table to help student-athletes learn about their options for playing collegiate-level athletics.

High school principal Patrick DiClemente said the guidance department did an excellent job of coordinating the college fair. “Our guidance counselors worked hard to ensure that students and their families were able to gather information about many different college experiences,” he said, adding that the guidance counselors will continue to work closely with students and answer questions about the college application process. 

Winning Cases in the Courtroom

Mock Trial Team at Awards Dinner
Nine high school students spent months preparing for roles that required them to argue real court cases in an actual courtroom in the Nassau County Supreme Court. The mock trial team began researching their case and learning their roles for the New York State High School Mock Trial Tournament in November and then entered the courtroom for the first time in February. Their efforts landed them in second place out of the original 52 teams competing.
Team members played the roles of three lawyers and six witnesses as they competed against other high school teams in front of a Nassau County judge. After arguing their case successfully, the Locust Valley team won the first six rounds and advanced to the semifinals. 

The team’s adviser, high school teacher Patrick Barry, said preparing for the competition required a tremendous amount of work that taught the students about how a courtroom is run, legal terminology and strategy. The case they argued involved the succession rights to a rent-controlled apartment.
The mock lawyers needed to learn all the procedures of a real trial, as well as develop direct and indirect questions to ask witnesses on the stand. The mock witnesses learned every detail of the case so when they were cross-examined by other teams, they knew how to answer the questions with the facts. Rules of the tournament meant they could not make up any details relating to the case and could not lie on the stand.
The Nassau County Bar Association provided each team with an attorney coach to offer legal advice along the way. Richard Apat was the coach for the Locust Valley team and his endless hours of guidance were invaluable.
“Mr. Apat was an instrumental piece of our success,” Barry said. “He taught them to get right to the meat of the case, explaining that judges do not like listening to fluff. He also helped them with their strategy and taught them what would happen in the courtroom.”
Despite the assistance of an attorney, it was the hard work and dedication of the team that led to their overall success. Team captains, juniors Lisa Cheung, Julia Forte and Beatrix Postley, led the team, which also included Owen Byron, Sydney Collings, Hope Montell, Tighe Mullarkey, Griffin Postley and Ethan Vitale. The team was recognized and received a plaque at an awards ceremony on May 13. 
Congratulations to the entire team on this outstanding accomplishment, which could only be achieved through the dedication of endless hours put in after school and on weekends. 

The World Becomes the Classroom

Participants in the Berlin trip pose with painting they created.
The high school curriculum was brought to life for 15 students who traveled to Berlin, Germany, to experience life abroad for one week. Living central to all that Berlin has to offer, these young travelers took in its history, lifestyle and more as they toured on foot, by tram and in trains. There was no tour bus for this immersive experience, which helped students gain a new perspective of life in a modern European city.
Accompanied by high school principal Patrick DiClemente, high school teacher Rachel McShane and district parent Edward Neves, the group experienced more than the typical tourist. They participated in a scavenger hunt in which they had to photograph historical sites, they exercised at the local gym and communicated with the local residents about their viewpoints on current events. Reflections, presentations and group work were a key part of the students’ learning experiences.
One adventure included a visit to Tempelhofer Feld, one of Europe’s iconic pre-World War II airports. This airport was used for the Berlin airlift during the Cold War. It has since closed (2008) and now serves as a park for Berlin’s residents. There, students asked German residents using the park for leisure activities how they would change or update the local park. Ms. McShane said this particular activity helped the students gain a local perspective of the capital city. 
On a daily basis, getting from point A to point B meant passing by the iconic Brandenburg Gate, considered the symbol of Berlin. The 18th-century monument, with a statue of a chariot pulled by four horses that sits atop the six-columned gate, began serving as a point of reference for the group. It was a surreal experience to see such a prominent monument on a daily basis.
Urban kayaking and other group activities helped the students form bonds with each other since they were not all friends before the trip. Going to an escape room meant learning to work together to figure out how to free the prisoner and help everyone escape! The most unique part of this escape room was that it was once a Soviet bunker. Other memorable sites included the Berliner Fernsehturm (TV tower) and the German parliament building, the Reichstag.
Ms. McShane said since the high school social studies curriculum includes studying World War I, World War II and the Cold War, the entire trip complemented the lessons the students learn in the classroom. “This trip brought those lessons to life,” she said. She added that they were able to see and do so much because the students were so well behaved. “This was a memorable trip with an impressive group of students,” she said.
Mr. DiClemente agreed, adding that the students were enthusiastic and curious, learning more than they could ever learn within the walls of any school. “Traveling to Berlin with these 15 students was a positive experience I will never forget,” he said. “There was an incredible intellectual curiosity that made each day a learning experience while also being fun.

Student Musicians Selected for Prestigious Performances

Three Locust Valley student-musicians participated in prestigious performances for which they went through rigorous auditions. 

High school students Matthew Guerra and Hans Kiessling were chosen to perform in the 15th annual LIU Post Band Festival at the Tilles Center for the Performing Arts in April. Matthew, a tenor saxophonist, and Hans, a percussionist, are members of the high school symphonic band. With 220 high school musicians auditioning for the honor to perform, they were among only 115 chosen. Their talent earned them the privilege to perform with the Tilles Festival Band. They worked with the university’s director of bands, James McRoy, and world-renowned Composer-in-Residence Dr. Jack Stamp to prepare for the performance, which was a musical treat.

Locust Valley Middle School band student William Wysolovski participated in the NMEA All-County Percussion Ensemble at Seaford High School in April. William was one of only seven middle school percussionists selected for this honor from all of Nassau County. For the audition, William performed a NYSSMA Level 6 snare drum solo. 

Congratulations to Matthew, Hans and Will on their outstanding achievements!

Middle School Students Earn Physical Education Award

Eighth graders Christian Corey and Jolie Pye were named Outstanding Physical Education Student of the Year by the Nassau Zone of the New York State Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance. 

Nominated unanimously by the Locust Valley Middle School physical education teachers, Christian and Jolie met all of the criteria for this award. According to the New York State APHERD, students worthy of this recognition must exemplify and demonstrate an understanding of the NYS Learning Standards for Health and Physical Education by exhibiting a physically active lifestyle, both during and outside of school; demonstrate responsible personal and social behavior, including good sportsmanship, character, civility and citizenship; demonstrate leadership and positively influencing his/her peers; contribute to their school physical education and health education programs; and demonstrate and value a healthy lifestyle, wellness and lifelong learning. 

Additionally, award winners should exhibit exceptional achievement in health education and/or physical education classes and achieve a high level of physical fitness on an approved fitness test.

Dr. Danielle Turner, Locust Valley’s Director of Health, Physical Education and Athletics, said that Christian and Jolie meet and exceed all of the criteria. “These two students are most deserving of this award,” she said. 

Congratulations to Christian and Jolie on this outstanding achievement!

Summer Recreation Registration


The Summer Recreation registration information is now available.

See attached.


AP/IB Review Sessions

Click the link below for the schedule of AP/IB review sessions. Check back often for updates.

See attached schedule.


New EMT Course Offering Lifeline to the Future


High school students are learning to save lives in the school’s new emergency medical technician course that ends with each student becoming a certified EMT after passing the state certification exam.

Nine students are earning high school credit for the course that is offered after school twice per week and taught by Nassau County EMT trainer Jason Vitulli.

Earning EMT certification while still in high school has many advantages, Vitulli explained. He said that those who plan to pursue careers in the medical field will be ahead of their peers who often start medical school with no actual medical experience. Students can work on an ambulance while attending college, and often colleges will offer tuition breaks for trained EMTs. The certification also provides an opportunity for community service by serving in a volunteer fire department.

The high school’s course is no different from the EMT courses offered elsewhere. Students are required to complete the same training, which includes working at least one shift in a hospital emergency room.

The class roster includes a few future doctors, a current volunteer firefighter and several students who realize holding this certification may help them in the future. Class time includes learning how to properly apply bandages, stop bleeding and provide basic life support.

“This is a course that will make a difference in the lives of the students and others they care for in the future,” said high school principal Patrick DiClemente. “We are thrilled that the class has been a success and will look to continue offering it as part of our academic program.”

The district administrators are looking into offering the class during the school day, allowing more students to participate. For those active in extracurricular activities, taking the course after school was not an option.

“We’d like to open it up to more students,” DiClemente said.

Community Partnership Unites LV Athletes of All Ages

In a community partnership that benefited youth athletes, Falcon Pride Athletic Booster Club and Locust Valley High School joined together to hold Future Falcon Day on April 27 and 28 at the high school.
Varsity athletes and their coaches volunteered their time to host clinics for approximately 60 youth athletes in the district’s feeder programs for lacrosse, baseball and track. The aspiring Falcons received individualized coaching from the high school players who taught them skills, held drills and offered words of encouragement.
Following the events of each day, the athletes from all age groups joined together to share pizza and snacks and discuss the fun they had.  
“Future Falcon Day fostered a sense of pride and school spirit within our athletic community,” said Director of Health, Physical Education and Athletics Dr. Danielle Turner. “The partnership we have with Falcon Pride and the youth athletic organizations provides incredible opportunities for our student-athletes of all ages.” Dr. Turner expressed sincere gratitude to Falcon Pride for sponsoring Future Falcon Day and for the continued support the booster club offers to the district.

Sensory Day Targets Fine Motor Skills


Special activities set up at Bayville Primary School seemed like fun to the students participating, but little did they know that each station they went to had a distinct purpose. They were all part of the school’s second annual Sensory Day, created to honor National Autism Awareness Month and Occupational Therapy Awareness Month, both recognized in April.

Packed with sensory and motor stimuli, the tasks required students to use their hands, to move their bodies and to motor plan, which means to conceive, plan, and carry out a skilled, nonhabitual motor act in the correct sequence from beginning to end.

At one station, students planted plastic flowers in a bed of various types of beans, while another task required them to blow a ball across a goal using a straw. Drawing their names in sand and building geometric shapes with toothpicks and miniature marshmallows were other ways in which fine motor skills were enhanced.

Occupational therapist Dr. Doreit S. Bialer said the first sensory day held last year was a success, with children enjoying the activities and learning new ways in which to build their skills. She organized the event along with the other therapists who work together at Bayville Primary School, including occupational therapist Ms. Alison Milligan and physical therapist Diana Krauper. They all ensured that the children were benefiting from the movements required throughout the stations.

“Multisensory environments improve the development of thought, intelligence and
social skills while offering people with cognitive impairments and other challenging conditions the opportunity to enjoy and control a variety of sensory experiences,” Dr. Bialer said. “Occupational and physical therapists have specialized training to help balance children’s sensory systems to promote calmer and more organized states.”

Bayville Elementary School Assistant Principal Dorothy McManus said the benefits provided by these special activities are truly a gift to the students. “Having fun while improving motor skills is a win-win, and our dedicated therapists did a wonderful job making that happen,” she said.

Silence Makes a Statement

The halls of Locust Valley High School were quiet on April 12 as the National Day of Silence was observed. Recognition of this day is intended to promote safe and inclusive schools for all students by highlighting the silencing of LGBTQ students. Members of the GSA and other students took a vow of silence, starting at 7:40 a.m. and continuing through the end of the school day.

Organized by members of the high school’s Gay Straight Alliance Club, many students and staff participated in a variety of ways. The day before the event, the school was decorated with bright colors and rainbow stickers, rainbow flags hung throughout the building, and students and staff wore brightly colored clothing. On April 12, participants and supporters wore black and adorned their clothing with rainbow stickers. 


Stepping Up To Help Others

The Locust Valley Intermediate School Student Council hit the ground running with their efforts to help those in need. With the help of the school community, the group collected 325 pairs of used shoes for the nonprofit organization Soles4Souls. The organization distributes shoes to those in need around the world and uses resources from shoe collections to create sustainable jobs in poverty-stricken areas around the world.

Interact Club Enriches Lives of Seniors Citizens

The Locust Valley High School Interact Club recently visited the Glen Cove Senior Center, where they spent time with the residents in the Adult Day Program.

The club members visit with the seniors a few times a year, talking with them, getting to know them and doing a craft project together. During this visit, the group created spring hats. 

Interact Club adviser Erica Reilly said the students learn many interesting things about the residents, and the seniors, most of whom have forms of dementia including Alzheimer’s disease, enjoy the conversation and activity.

Fashion Show Fun!


Dressed to impress, LVHS seniors modeled the latest in formal wear, sportswear and casual wear to raise funds for their prom. Check out the slideshow to see how they ruled the runway.


Model UN Goes to Washington


A desire to create and pass legislation brought 45 Locust Valley High School students to the Washington Area Model United Nations Conference, hosted by George Washington University from March 21-24.

The attendees, members of the high school’s Model United Nations Club, enjoyed discussing historical and current issues with their peers from around the world. They prepared for months, researching their assigned nations and characters in depth to participate in committees with 1,300 student delegates.  A joint session of the 91st U.S. Congress, a historic Congress of Vienna, a futuristic Arctic Task force in 2025, and the UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development were some of the committees they took part in. They learned about diplomacy, debated various topics and compromised on a variety of resolutions. 

To make the most of the trip, the group also explored sites in Washington, D.C., including the United States Institute of Peace, where they learned about the purpose of the organization and how members worked around the world to defuse conflict through diplomacy and negotiation. They also visited the National Museum of American History and the Lincoln Memorial. Some students went to see the White House. 

The trip was chaperoned by club advisers Ashley Gruter and Stephanie Scavelli, along with faculty member Alexandra Cannone and high school principal Patrick DiClemente. They not only enjoyed seeing the success the students were having with this experience, but they also learned alongside them. 

“We were impressed with the professionalism and maturity with which the students presented themselves and represented Locust Valley,” Mr. DiClemente said. “The advisers also did an outstanding job mentoring the group in preparation for the event.

Congratulations to all of the participants and to the Model UN officers for their excellent leadership. The officers are Kat Berritto, Danielle Caso, Seamus Fallon, Sarah Lubow, Joseph McNamara and Mikey Porco. 

Real-World Experience Enhances Classroom Lessons


The benefits of participating in the middle school Model UN class are almost endless. Students polish their public-speaking skills, develop confidence and leadership abilities, enhance research and writing skills, and learn to negotiate and work as part of a team.

At Locust Valley Middle School, 32 eighth graders are reaping these benefits and more, as Model UN is offered as an enrichment elective. After preparing for months, the students participated in the Global Classrooms International Model United Nations from March 29-30 at the Grand Hyatt New York in Manhattan. They were among 1,700 students from around the world taking part in the event.

Avery Sessler and Daniel Peterson won best position paper for the Historic Security Council, and Aidan Domin and Aidan Moran won honorable mention in ECOFIN. 

All of the students prepared position papers from the perspective of either China or Burkina Faso on topics such as Adapting Agriculture to Climate Change, Illegal Antiquities Trading and Rights of Migrant Workers. They debated the topics in committees such as IAEA, Security Council, UNESCO and WHO, and then wrote and voted on resolutions in blocs. 

The students attended the closing ceremonies on Saturday in the General Assembly Hall of the United Nations Headquarters. They made friends and exchanged gifts with children from several continents!

Model UN coach Michele Gaglione said the experience was invaluable. “The preparation alone taught the students a tremendous amount,” she said. “Presenting their findings and speaking with their peers from other countries offered insight that they cannot gain from textbooks.”

Foreign Language Honor Societies Welcome Newest Members


On a stage adorned with the brightly colored flags of France, Italy and Spain, the Locust Valley High School Foreign Language Honor Society inducted its newest members. Nearly 80 students proved that their foreign language skills were worthy of entrance into the elite club.

The ceremony was dripping with cultural touches, including poems read in French, Italian and Spanish, as well as musical performances that represented each language. The officers of the French, Italian and Spanish honor societies led the ceremony, administered the oaths to each group and introduced each speaker.

Amy Watson, K-12 World Language Coordinator, shared that she first fell in love with foreign language as a student at Locust Valley High School. Other speakers included Locust Valley High School Principal Patrick DiClemente, Board of Education President Brian T. Nolan and Acting Superintendent of Schools Dr. Carl Bonuso. Each shared their pride in the inductees for their accomplishments and all agreed that speaking a foreign language opens the door for many opportunities, professionally and socially. 

Congratulations to the inductees on this outstanding achievement! 

Creativity Soars in Odyssey of the Mind Competition

The Locust Valley High School Odyssey of the Mind team earned second place in the Spontaneous category at the state level of competition on March 24 in Binghamton, New York. The team placed eighth overall in a field of 16 teams.

The long-term performance was a classic called Leonardo’s Workshop. 

Coach Alan Stella said the team’s creativity and witty performance captured praise from the judges and audience alike. 

Congratulations to team members Catherine Almonte, Nicholas Chiu, Nicole Dressler, Jack Manning, Olivia Olynciw, Takara Perkins and Joanna Yu.

LVHS Artists Learn From Alumna

Locust Valley High School IB art students learned just what their IB art classes can do for them when they visited the exhibit of a Locust Valley High School alumna. 

High school art teachers Donna Chaplin and Linda DeFeo led their students on a trip to Manhattan to see the art exhibit of their former student Julia Ryan, Class of 2013.

Julia told the current IB students that taking IB courses benefited her greatly in college. She explained that the program prepares artists to take their work and themselves seriously. She also said it was helpful that friends she met in college from other countries such as India and Brazil had taken some of the same courses that she took. 

Ms. Chaplin said it is important that students experience art outside of their screens. “Our IB students are going through the process of developing and presenting a body of work,” she explained. “Seeing how Julia sets up her collection for view and listening to how she gets inspired to create her different series of works helps our students make the mental connection with what they are currently trying to achieve in their classes.”

Locust Valley Among Best Communities for Music Education

Locust Valley Central School District has been honored with the Best Communities for Music Education designation from The NAMM Foundation for its outstanding commitment to music education.  

The designation is awarded to districts that demonstrate outstanding achievement in efforts to provide music access and education to all students. This award recognizes that Locust Valley is leading the way with learning opportunities as outlined in the Every Student Succeeds Act.

The district offers music education starting in kindergarten, with opportunities to join chorus, band and orchestra in intermediate school. At the middle and high school level, there are additional enhancements to the music education program, including jazz band, concert chorale and chamber orchestra. The success of the district’s music programs is highlighted at the many concerts and performances held throughout the year and at various community events at which Locust Valley musicians entertain. 

The NAMM Foundation is a nonprofit supported in part by the National Association of Music Merchants. The foundation advances active participation in music making across the lifespan by supporting scientific research, philanthropic giving and public service programs.

Making Mental Health a Priority

Learning various methods and practices that instill wellness and mental health was the goal of a recent field trip taken by six high school students. The group attended the Nassau County Youth Wellness Summit in Merrick on March 19. The event, sponsored by the Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide and the Long Island Youth Wellness Summit Committee, offered workshops intended to empower teens with preventative measures and coping skills that they could bring back to the school and share with their peers.

Sophomores Emerson Banos-Ronquillo, Julia Czerwonka and Kaitlyn Ward joined juniors Nina Rose Cialone, Anthony Scicutella and Matthew Scicutella at the conference with high school psychologist Kristen Sylvan and individual needs teacher Kristy Kinsley. The students were chosen for their leadership skills and ability to share the information with others in the school community.

One workshop taught participants how to use yoga poses to incorporate more calm into one’s life. Other workshops addressed the importance of self-worth and emphasized that it is OK to talk about suicidal feelings and to reach out for help. Messages throughout the day focused on helping one another and helping oneself.  Recent high school graduates shared advice on transitioning to college and managing various challenges that the students will face. 

Ms. Sylvan said that the summit provided students with an opportunity to hear from experts in the field, collaborate with students from districts across Nassau County to raise awareness and offer resources for mental health issues.   

“We are proud that our students were part of Nassau County’s first Youth Wellness Summit. The students were active participants in the day’s activities and feel empowered to bring these lessons back to their school community,” Ms. Sylvan said. “These student leaders will be able to use the strategies in their own lives and will also be able to advocate for the well-being of their friends, classmates and community.”

Lip Sync Battle


LVHS students participated in the annual Lip Sync Battle to raise funds for Class of 2019 prom. Check out the photos from this entertaining event.

Filmmakers Take Home Nine Statues at Prestigious Festival


Locust Valley High School filmmakers used specific lighting, camera angles, carefully crafted scriptsand the right actors to create films that would evoke emotions in their audiences. In a variety of genres, the students told stories that made the audience feel connected to their characters or storyline. Their efforts paid with nine awards at the 14th Annual Locust Valley Film Festival held on March 28.

Competing against students from nine schools across Long Island, the films were judged by acclaimed ABC Entertainment Reporter and movie critic Sandy Kenyon. Mr. Kenyon sat quietly during the festival as 66 films were shown, making notes about the acting, the scripts, the lighting and other technical aspects.

Mr. Kenyon, who has judged the high school’s film festival for nine years, does not know from which schools the films originate as he judges. Before the awards are given, he offers his constructive criticism to help the young filmmakers improve.

He often talks about using the students who perform in the school plays as the actors and making sure the lighting is appropriate. This year was no different as he pointed out that actors should not be in front of bright windows. “I could not see the actor’s face,” he said. While the comment may sound critical, the young filmmakers will likely not make that mistake again.

Overall, Kenyon said this year’s festival was one of the best he’s been to at Locust Valley. “I learned more this year,” he said, explaining that the films meant something and he was interested in what they had to say.

Taking the trophy in six out of 12 categories, the Locust Valley students proved that they are perfecting the skills they’ve acquired in their film classes and learning from the advice Kenyon offers each year.

Locust Valley High School film teacher and film festival organizer Roger Boucher said this seemed to be the most competitive year in the history of the festival, with every school winning at least one award. 

“The thing that makes me most proud is the success we achieved at every level,” Boucher said. “It’s great to see students from every course in our program rewarded for their hard work and dedication. We are a very young program and I think our best is yet to come.” He said winners came from the high school’s Media Studies, Filmmaking and IB Film courses.

Participating schools submitted their film entries before the festival for prejudging by professors at Five Towns College. The finalists were included in the festival for judging by Kenyon.

Community members packed the high school mini-theater on March 25 for Monday Night at the Movies, a free screening of the Locust Valley student films in advance of the festival.

Congratulations to Locust Valley’s award winners:

First-Place Awards:

Comedy: “Not Today” by Reed Barcellos, John Madsen, Matthew Pisciotta

Editing: “Intervention” by Madeline Daly, Ava Ireland

Public Service Announcement: “Attack of the Ad” by Trinity Benstock, Maria Bubulinus, Christina Pierno

Best Director

“Brads Town: Age of Amoral” by Anthony Madsen

Second-Place Awards:

Cinematography: “Brads Town: Age of Amoral” by Anthony Madsen

Comedy: “The Felonious Perpetrator” by Alexander Gianoukakis, Brian Graham, Nick Sanchez, Jack Pflaumer

Documentary: “Pulling Through” by Madeline Daly

Sound Design: “Intervention” by Ava Ireland, Madeline Daly

Third-Place Award:

Music Video: “Your Love” by Alexander Gianoukakis, Nick Sanchez Reed Barcellos, Doran McCormack


Rocking Socks For Awareness

Bayville Intermediate School students and staff rocked colorful socks in honor of World Down Syndrome Day on March 21. People around the world raised awareness of Down syndrome by wearing colorful socks or three socks to represent the unique traits of those with Down syndrome.

The date of March 21 (3/21) was selected to signify the uniqueness of the triplication of the 21st chromosome which leads to Down syndrome.

Spotlight on Science

Two students show off their experiment.

Ideas were developed, hypotheses stated and experiments conducted in preparation for Locust Valley Intermediate School’s science fair. Third-, fourth- and fifth-graders presented their findings at the annual event sponsored by the Locust Valley Elementary School Parents’ Council.

Young scientists conducted research and experiments to discover, among other things, whether sanitizer or soap eliminates more bacteria from hands, how much salt is needed to make an egg float and which liquids would expand gummy bears the most.

LVI science lab instructor Caroline McBride said the students conduct their experiments and create their poster boards at home using knowledge they have gained from the science curriculum. “The science fair is an excellent way to enhance and reinforce what we are learning in school,” she said.

Each project was judged by high school students in the science research program along with high school science teachers Chris Hoppner and Alan Stella.

Congratulations to all the participants and to the following winners:

Third Grade

First Place: Up, Up and Away, by Gavin Hoban and Asher Zito

Second Place: Best Hockey Shot, by Logan Moran

Third Place: Comparing the Environmental Impact of Different Types of Light Bulbs, by Ava Gross

Fourth Grade

First Place: Where Are the Germs in Your Neighborhood? by Russell Dardzinski and Peter Norby

Second Place: Beware of Your Hands, by Julianna Hach, Izabella Sammut and Izabella Watson 

Third Place: Mind Over Batter, by Ellis Blair and Kate Bodian
Fifth Grade

First Place: Density Water Bot Rocket, by Rowan Shenoy

Second Place: OJ Art Blasters, by Juliette D’Addario and Olivia Manning

Third Place: Yummy Growing Gummy Bears, by Emily Gallo, Lily Goodstein and Natalee Weiss

Five Star Performance by LVHS Jesters!

Collage of four scenes from the high school spring musical

The Locust Valley High School Jesters entertained audiences during three stellar performances of  “The Drowsy Chaperone” March 15-17. Set in the Jazz Age, the musical provided the perfect stage to highlight the singing, dancing and acting talents of the Locust Valley High School actors.

The Jesters’ comedic timing resulted in roaring laughter from the audience, and applause for their singing was endless. 

The story opened with a man in a chair putting on his favorite record, the cast recording of a fictitious 1928 musical. The Jesters then brought the record to life with the man, played by Locust Valley High School senior Alim Merchant, pausing the record to share his commentary on the actors and the plot during various scenes. 

This musical within a comedy brought energy to the Locust Valley High School auditorium, and the Jesters should be proud of the professional performance they presented.