South Country Central School District


South Country Central School District

 

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Visit the South Country Central School District website for updates.

 


 

South Country’s Andrew Budris Named LICSS Teacher of the Year

Andrew Budris

South Country Central School District is proud to announce that the Long Island Council for the Social Studies has recognized Bellport High School teacher Andrew Budris as the 2020 Outstanding High School Teacher of the Year.

Mr. Budris, a Bellport resident, has taught social studies in the South Country Central School District for 25 years and is currently Lead Teacher for Social Studies. He has worked diligently to lead the high school and Bellport Middle School in implementation of Project Based Learning. With the input of colleagues, his development of the Kiva Project has provided students with the opportunity to conduct research on global business and economic challenges and to provide microloans to applicants through partnership with the South Country Education Foundation.

Social studies teacher Megan Bevan said, “He has opened the door for students of all backgrounds and skill levels to get involved in research and civic action. Thanks to his leadership, Bellport High School is working to develop a generation of students who are engaged in solving society’s problems through informed action.”

Mr. Budris currently teaches Advanced Placement Government and 10th grade Global Studies and said social studies is a way to better understand humanity. “I have a fundamentally optimistic view that the better people understand each other, the more likely they are to see each other’s humanity,” he explained. “We need an understanding of our shared experiences to build a workable community.”

Mr. Budris also noted that as a social studies teacher he aims to foster critical thinking and the ability to build views that are based on sound reasoning. “The most important skill today is to use critical thinking to determine what information is reliable,” he said. “I’d like to see kids use knowledge as a tool to build bridges between groups of people.”

Mr. Budris is married to high school English teacher Ellen Hoffman and has a daughter, Maddy, who is enrolled at the high school as a freshman. The Budris family took up residence in Bellport 20 years ago.

 


 

College Board Recognizes 45 Bellport High School AP Scholars

AP Scholars

The South Country Central School District is pleased to announce that 45 current Bellport High School students and 2020 graduates were recognized as Advanced Placement Scholars for exceptional achievement on the May 2020 national exams.

Twenty students qualified for the AP Scholar Award by receiving a 3 or higher on three or more exams and include: Mariz Baslious,* Erin Boehmke, Eva Colon, Mathew Bokehi Costa,* Rachel Dickinson, Carly Diolosa, Alexa Ferrara, Samantha Fuentes,* Courtney Gerard, Jahid Hossain,* Victoria Pennachio, Samantha Porsche, Jonel Poueriet-Santana,* Ella Rauch, Caitlin Saliba,* Peri Sallah, Maya Samuel, Peter Schortemeyer,* Mia Suarez and Eliza Ynoa.

Thirteen students received the AP Scholar with Honor Award by earning an average grade of 3.25 on all AP exams taken and grades of 3 or higher on four or more of those exams and include: Jack Armann,* Lindsey Belmonte,* Kayzjah Charles, Aidan Gaynor,* Taylor Kelly,* Jared Lorenzo, Victoria Monte,* Liam Murphy, Anthony Notartomaso,* Troy Sica, Katherine Vignona, Ryan Voegele* and Cailey Ziegler.*

Twelve students received the AP Scholar with Distinction Award by earning an average grade of at least 3.5 on all AP exams taken and grades of 4 or higher on five or more of these exams and include: Audrey Barry, David Bellante, Connor Coleman, Sebastian Derosa, Ali Guillermo, Natalia Jordan, Charlotte Kellogg,* Juliana Lewkowski, Nicholas Promutico, Luca Scharpf, Kanya Shah* and Kunj Shah.

Additionally, Sebastian Derosa and Juliana Lewkowski were recognized as National AP Scholars by earning an average score of at least 4 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 4 or higher on eight or more of these exams.

* indicates students who are currently enrolled at Bellport High School.

 


 

Bellport High School Seniors Mariz Baslious and Charlotte Kellogg Named 2020 QuestBridge Finalists

QuestBridge
Mariz Baslious

Quest Bridge
Charlotte Kellogg

Bellport High School seniors Mariz Baslious and Charlotte Kellogg were selected by QuestBridge as 2020 National Finalists for having demonstrated high academic achievement. QuestBridge is a national nonprofit institution that connects the country’s most exceptional students with leading educational institutions and further academic opportunities at some of the nation’s top colleges and universities. In June, Mariz and Charlotte were two of 3,770 high school juniors named 2020 College Prep Scholars out of a pool of 12,600 applications. As finalists, they will potentially be matched with a full scholarship to one of QuestBridge’s 42 partner colleges.

In being considered for this prestigious opportunity, QuestBridge searches for academically talented students who match the college partners’ level of academic achievement and can potentially thrive on their college/university campuses. Finalists are chosen from a pool of applicants who are in the top 5% to 10% of their class, have received mostly A’s in the school’s most rigorous classes and have realized strong standardized test scores, if taken.

In addition to be academically talented, Mariz is highly involved in extracurricular activities. She is vice president of the National Honor Society and a member of the math and science honor societies, as well as a member of Math Team. An avid tennis player on both the junior varsity and varsity teams, Mariz received the recognition of Most Valuable Player last season. She is also a Sunday school teacher for her church.

Charlotte is an Advanced Placement student and a member of the National Honor Society and Math Honor Society, where she serves as corresponding secretary. She is also president of the Chess Club and math team and recently assisted in forming the previously defunct debate club. Charlotte also spends time with computer club activities and drama club. Although not a varsity athlete, Charlotte maintains a rigorous personal athletic program in which she trains with weights and participates in functional training, such as everyday moving and compound exercises.

 


 

South Country Welcomes Assistant Superintendent Elizabeth Doyle

South Country Schools

The South Country Central School District welcomes Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum, Instruction and Accountability Elizabeth Doyle, effective Nov. 1, who was appointed by the board of education during the Sept. 29 business meeting.

“We are extremely fortunate to have such a qualified educator to fill this position,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Joseph Giani said. “The Board of Education and I look forward to working with Ms. Doyle in achieving the district’s educational and instructional goals.”

Ms. Doyle, an East Hampton resident, joins South Country from the East Hampton Union Free School District, where she served as principal of John M. Marshall Elementary School since 2013. During her tenure, she successfully implemented a prekindergarten program and a Spanish dual language program. Ms. Doyle also partnered with Sag Harbor’s Wellness Foundation to implement a Wellness Zone while extending recess time for all grades to promote health and wellness and increase student focus and motivation. She also implemented a character education program to further promote diversity and a positive school climate. Ms. Doyle also developed and led K-12 professional development in literacy, mathematics, school culture, professional learning communities, critical friends groups, classroom management and co-teaching.

Prior to her tenure at East Hampton Union Free Schools, Ms. Doyle was principal of Explore Empower Public Charter School and the former coordinator for K-12 English in the White Plains City School District. She was additionally director of operations and school support and director of instruction for Replications, Inc., an education nonprofit partner with the New York City Department of Education. She began her educational career as an elementary school teacher at The Jackie Robinson School in Queens. Ms. Doyle was formerly vice president for Citigroup Private Bank before answering New York City’s call for career changers to become teachers in high needs districts. She thus applied to the NYC Teaching Fellows Program where she served as a fellow and selector.

Ms. Doyle holds a master’s degree in elementary education from Queen’s College and certification in Advanced Studies in Education Administration from LIU Post. She also received a bachelor’s degree in business administration and international business from Hofstra University.

 


 

Celebrating the Day of the Dead Through Art

ARtists

In recognition of National Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept.15-Oct.15), Frank P. Long Intermediate School students learned about Mexico’s annual Day of the Dead, Dia de los Muertos, a celebration which honors the lives of ancestors who have passed.

Fifth graders in art teacher Mandy Hoffman’s class learned to draw colorful sugar skulls, which represent ancestors and which are included in altars during the popular holiday held on Oct. 31-Nov. 2. A YouTube video narrated by Ms. Hoffman and skeleton helper Mr. Bones, engaged the students with the how-to instructions on drawing a skull and its decorative design qualities.

After the sugar skulls were completed, they were hung on the wall of the art room for everyone to enjoy.

 


 

Meet the Student Ex-Officio Board Member

ARtists

When tuning into the South Country Central School District’s YouTube channel to view the latest streamed board of education meeting, a new face has popped up on the virtual screen. During the Sept. 23 board of education meeting, Student Council President and Bellport High School senior Jack Frankie was appointed as the board’s newest student ex-officio board member for the 2020-2021 school year.

President E. Anne Hayes welcomed Jack to his new position and said she will look forward to hearing his report each meeting. During his first report to the board, Jack relayed that school opened smoothly and students are cooperative and compliant with wearing masks. During future meetings, his job will be to report high school activities and happenings to the board and to relay important board business to the student council.

“I am very excited to tell the Board of Education all of the great things that are happening at the high school despite the pandemic,” Jack said. “I think the high school is in the best shape it’s ever been.”
In addition to his Student Council presidency, Jack is a member of the jazz band and plays the trumpet and euphonium. He’s an Advanced Placement student and a former cross-country athlete. His biggest interest, however, is acquiring his certification and flying hours as a student-pilot at BOCES, where he is in his second year of study to fly small planes and hot air balloons. Jack explained that his goal is to pursue a major in aviation management and to possibly pursue all FAA certification and licensing, in addition to pursuing space travel with NASA or Space X.

 


 

Bellport High School Artists Garner Top Art Honors

ARtists

The South Country Central School District is pleased to announce that the Long Island Arts Alliance selected Bellport High School senior Anna Mezzatesta as one of 20 Long Island Scholar Artists for the 2020-21 school year. Under the direction of former teacher and art department chairperson Suzette Fandale, Anna was recognized for her excellence in media arts and for academic achievement. Additionally, senior Caitlin Saliba was one of 20 recipients who received an Award of Merit for portfolio work completed under the direction of teacher Devin Auricchio.

To be considered for these prestigious designations, students must be nominated by their school for representing the highest level of artistic talent in media arts, visual arts, music, dance or theater. The student must also submit a portfolio of their work for consideration by the selection committee and must hold an unweighted grade point average of 90% or above. As a scholar-artist, Anna’s profile and photo will be published in Newsday in December.

 


 

Top Notes for Bellport High School Student-Musicians

Musicians

The South Country Central School District is pleased to announce that Bellport High School student-musicians Jack Burkhardt (Bb clarinet) and Taylor Kelly (French horn) were selected to participate in the New York State School Music Association Virtual All-State Festival for symphonic band, being held virtually on Dec. 3-5. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, NYSSMA will not be able to host these students to rehearse and perform at the Winter Conference in Rochester at the renowned Eastman Theater of the Eastman School of Music.

The duo was nominated and selected based on scores they received at the NYSSMA Solo and Ensemble Festival during the 2018-2019 school year. Director of Music Victoria Hartman explained that being selected is a remarkable achievement in that 6,500 students statewide auditioned for a position in the All-State Music Festival. Performing ensembles include the All-State symphonic band, wind ensemble, mixed chorus, treble choir, symphony orchestra, and instrumental and vocal jazz ensemble. Fifteen Bellport High School students auditioned for All-State in spring 2018.

 


 

South Country Central School District Welcomes Students Back to the Classroom

Opening Day

In addition to backpacks, school supplies and face masks, South Country Central School District students toted an abundance of enthusiasm on their entry back into the classroom during two official reopening days of school, held on Sept. 8 and Sept. 10. As the students entered the buildings, their temperatures were checked and hands were sanitized prior to being escorted to their designated classrooms to immediately begin instruction.

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Joseph Giani reported that the district’s reopening after the six month hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic was smooth with students seated appropriately, mask compliant and engaged in learning. “I am looking forward to growth and improvement as we come to settle in this new normal of teaching and learning,” Dr. Giani said.

Board of Education trustees and President E. Anne Hayes were equally complementary of the smooth opening by administration, faculty and staff. “A lot of thought was put into the process and we were confident in our staff that they would get things done,” Ms. Hayes said. “Through helping each other and pulling together, we will continue to have a strong and productive school year.”

Opening Day

Opening Day

 


 

Bellport High School Thespian Wins Coveted Teeny Award

Winner

Bellport High School’s theater art program is pleased to announce that student-thespian Jack Burkhardt was the recipient of a coveted 2020 Teeny Award for his supporting male role as Lumiere in the school’s musical “Beauty and the Beast.” The award was presented during a virtual awards ceremony, held by East End Arts on July 23.

“This is a terrific accomplishment,” art department Chairperson Barbara Gallagher said. “Jack is an extremely talented actor and the South Country Central School District congratulates him on this special achievement.”

Each year, Bellport High School is one of 18 school theater programs whose productions are celebrated by the East End Arts for student talent and excellence in acting, production, pit orchestra, stage management, lighting design and crew and more. This year, the theatre program received 36 nominations for its productions of “Beauty and the Beast” and “The Game’s Afoot.”

 


 

South Country Student Named a 2020 QuestBridge College Prep Scholar

QuestBridge

Bellport High School junior Charlotte Kellogg has been chosen by QuestBridge to be a 2020 College Prep Scholar for having demonstrated high academic achievement.

QuestBridge is a national nonprofit institution that connects the country’s most exceptional students with leading educational institutions and further academic opportunities at some of the nation’s top colleges and universities. Charlotte is one of 3,770 high school juniors named a 2020 College Prep Scholar out of a pool of 12,600 applications nationwide, and later in the fall, will potentially be matched with a full scholarship to one of QuestBridge’s 42 partner colleges. As a College Prep Scholar, Charlotte will also receive exclusive awards and access to opportunities to develop a strong college application. Awards for being a College Prep Scholar also include opportunities to attend summer programs at Yale, Stanford and the University of Chicago.

Charlotte is an Advanced Placement student and a member of the National Honor Society and Math Honor Society, where she serves as corresponding secretary. She is also president of the Chess Club and math team and recently assisted in forming the previously defunct debate club. Charlotte also spends time with computer club activities and drama club. Although not a varsity athlete, Charlotte maintains a rigorous personal athletic program in which she trains with weights and participates in functional training, such as everyday moving and compound exercises.

Charlotte said she does not have her eye on a particular college or university at this time but will pursue an academic program that allows her to combine computer science and statistics.

 


 

South Country Thespians Nominated for 36 Teeny Awards

Teeny Awards

Bellport High School is proud to announce that its theater program has received 36 nominations for 2020 Teeny Awards for its productions of “Beauty and The Beast” and “The Game’s Afoot.” Bellport High School is one of 18 high schools whose theater productions are celebrated annually by East End Arts for student talent and excellence in acting, production, pit orchestra, stage management, lighting design and crew and more. Winners will be announced on Thursday, July 23, during a virtual format.

The South Country Central School District congratulates the following individuals for receiving Teeny Award nominations:

Play and Musical:
Michael Marziliano as William Gillette – Lead Male in a Play in “The Game's Afoot”
Autumn Margaret Walthers as Daria Chase – Lead Female in a Play in “The Game's Afoot”
Michael Marziliano as the Beast – Lead Male in a Musical in “Beauty and the Beast”
Jack Burkhardt as Lumiere – Supporting Male in a Musical in “Beauty and the Beast”
Troy Sica as Cogsworth – Supporting Male in a Musical in “Beauty and the Beast”
Emma Butler as Mrs. Potts – Supporting Female in a Musical in “Beauty and the Beast”


Technical:
Jasmine Armann – stage manager – “Beauty and the Beast”
Juliana Lewkowski – stage manager - “The Game’s Afoot or Holmes for the Holidays” and “Beauty and the Beast”
Vivienne Love – lighting – “The Game’s Afoot or Holmes for the Holidays” and “Beauty and the Beast”
Kieran Sawyer – lighting – “The Game’s Afoot or Holmes for the Holidays” and “Beauty and the Beast”
Ryan Wilson – sound – “The Game’s Afoot or Holmes for the Holidays” and “Beauty and the Beast”
Troy Sica – assistant director – “Beauty and the Beast”


Pit Orchestra:
David Bellante (percussion), Bella Caypinar (violin), Kayzjah Charles (bass), Mariah Chavez (violin), Ryann Christie (clarinet), Sara Cornacchiulo (flute), Sebastian DeRosa (violin), Vivian Fritz (harp), Isabella Gascon (violin), Emily Gentzel (violin), Violet Gordon (violin), Taylor Kelly (oboe), Daniela Mondi (cello), Victoria Monte (cello), Timmy Montick (trumpet), Liam Murphy (French horn), Anthony Notartomaso (baritone/euphonium), Tamara Ortiz Macas (flute), Rianna Raghunandan (violin), Ella Rauch (cello), Aidan Sawyer (French horn), Kat Vignona (trumpet), Emily Zahralban (violin) and Grace Zimlinghaus (French horn)

 


 

South Country Tri-M Music Honor Society Inducts 75

Tri Music Honor Society

Bellport High School’s Tri-M Music Honor Society inducted 75 seventh and eighth grade student-musicians to the prestigious Tri-M Music Honor Society. The new inductees are members of either band, orchestra or chorus and were recommended for membership by music faculty.

Music teacher Victoria Hartman explained that the students were selected to participate in the 2019 New York State School Music Association’s solo festival and were preparing to participate in the 2020 NYSSMA solo festival, which was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. She also described the inductees as “leaders in the classroom” and students most likely to assist behind the scenes at concerts.

Tri-M Music Honor Society is formerly known as Modern Music Masters. A program of the National Association for Music Education, Tri M recognizes students for academic and musical achievement. To be eligible, a student must maintain an A average in music lessons, a C average in academic courses, be presently enrolled in a high school music course and be recommended by faculty.

The South Country Central School District congratulates the following students:

Katherine Alayon
Alexa Allan
Pietro Ancona Jr.
Brynne Ballan
Angely Banegas
Maddy Budris
Claire Cannella
Christopher Chaves
Shaniah Chavez
Kailyn Ciavatta
Nolan Comerford
Juliette Cuccurese
Rosario Curcio
Evan Dedis (VP)
Samantha DeLillo
Karyn Devine
Maya Dixit
Nathan Ernst
Kenya Escobar
Erin Fagan
Frankie Felice
Christopher Ford
Giulia Gannon
Sean Glynn
Malena Gomez
Kevin Gonzalez
Louisa Gordon (Pres.)
Connor Gronenthal
Stephanie Grosso
Dylan Horn
Molly Hough
Brynn Johnsen
Melina Kasten
Dylan Knakal
Julia Kotasek
Emma Kuegel
Lauren LaGrega
Danika Leidig
Taylor Macioce
Diana Malchiodi
Anay Maldonado
Ryan Manitta
Catherine Masem
Sarah Meininger
Erini Michaels Hrysanthopoulos
Gael Michel
Derek Minden
Connor Murphy
Alana Negron
Macy Neider
Riley Neider
Michael Nesi (treasurer)

 


 

Bellport High School Class of 2020 to Brace Significant Challenges Ahead

Graduation

The Bellport High School Class of 2020 embraced and overcame the limits of social-distancing in a pandemic era to celebrate an important milestone in their educational careers during the annual commencement ceremonies, held on June 25. Prior to the ceremony, the police and fire departments escorted students, parents and family as they drove through the middle of Bellport Village from Bellport Middle School to the high school grounds where they were greeted by the administration and members of the board of education. If a student was unable to drive, Lyft donated transportation services so that every student was able to participate in this exciting event.

“Pomp and Circumstance” was played over the PA system as Bellport Security assisted each car with parking. Although required to remain in their cars during the ceremony, students could watch the ceremony, which was livestreamed on a movie screen, and listen to the ceremony live on 94.9 FM radio. After Assistant Principal Erika Della Rosa welcomed the students, Student Council President Carly Diolosa led the salute to the flag.

During her introductory comments, Carly explained that the obstacles the Class of 2020 experienced will be chronicled in history books and gave important advice to her peers. “Your achievements in life should not be measured by the car you drive or the job you have, but by the impact you have on others’ lives, the kindness you share and the values you reflect into the atmosphere.”

Principal Timothy Hogan, in acknowledgement of challenges faced by the pandemic and social injustice reforms, he told the students that significant challenges are ahead. “We must continue to work collectively in developing new models and new initiatives to navigate this ever changing environment,” he said.

Essayist Audrey Barry, whose task was to talk about the memories of the past, said she sometimes finds herself wanting to go back to a sense of familiarity and comfort. She encouraged peers to, take the good times of your past and use them to motivate your present.”

Natalia Jordan spoke about presence in her salutatory address. “In today’s society, the present is our tool to construct the future. Thus, it is imperative to not only be aware of a current crisis but also be involved in the action to create a better future.”

During the valedictorian address, Ali Dennis Guillermo Jr. told peers that the path to success does not have to be traveled alone and relationships made can help foster success. He attributed his path to success to his recently deceased father and deceased friend R.J. “After being made valedictorian, there were 10 seconds where I was completely ecstatic that my hard work had paid off. But there had to be an 11th second, right?” Ali said. “In that 11th second, I remembered what had gotten me this far. It was the motivation and influence of both RJ and my father. It was a motivation that could not be ignored.”

After the celebratory speeches, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Joseph Giani certified the diplomas and announced that the seniors had completed the requirements for graduation. Board President E. Anne Hayes then led the students in the traditional moving of the tassel, symbolizing that the seniors were now alumni of the South Country Central School District.

After a brief fireworks show by Grucci Fireworks, the students and their guests then proceeded to the front of the high school where they received their diplomas and had the opportunity to take a graduation photo.

 


       

School Contact Info

Pre-K 

Pre-Kindergarten Program
(At Brookhaven Elementary School)

101 Fireplace Neck Road
Brookhaven, NY
631-730-1700
Website


Pre-K 

Brookhaven Elementary School

101 Fireplace Neck Road
Brookhaven, NY
631-730-1700
Website


Kreamer Street Elementary School 

Kreamer Street Elementary School

37 Kreamer Street
Bellport, NY
631-730-1650
Website


Verne Critz Elementary School 

Verne W. Critz Elementary School

185 Dunton Avenue
East Patchogue, NY
631-730-1675
Website


Frank P. Long Intermediate School 

Frank P. Long Intermediate School

599 Brookhaven Avenue
Bellport, NY
631-730-1725
Website


Bellport Middle School 

Bellport Middle School

35 Kreamer Street
Bellport, NY
631-730-1626
Website


Pre-K 

Bellport High School

205 Beaver Dam Road
Brookhaven, NY
631-730-1575
Website


South Country Administrative Offices 

South Country School District Administrative Offices

189 Dunton Avenue
East Patchogue, NY
631-730-1500
Website


 

The links above direct to websites of the South Country Central School District. Photos courtesy of South Country Schools.