Giving Thanks

Educational lessons and community service projects centered on the Thanksgiving holiday at Babylon Elementary School this November.
Students and staff worked to make the holiday a bright one for others by contributing to the school’s annual food drive. As a result of the building’s overwhelming generosity, several boxes were filled to the brim with nonperishable items and delivered to local families in need just before the holiday.

Second-grade students fashioned Pilgrim and Native American hats and performed during their annual Thanksgiving feast. The event included several Thanksgiving-inspired songs and a healthy feast.  

Brownie Troop Aids Others

Brownie Troop 3174, comprised of Babylon Memorial Grade School students, coordinated a food drive for a local family this holiday season. The students collected a basketful of supplies and a supermarket gift card for one local family. The school commends the efforts of troop members Marissa Amato, Gigi Basile, Cassidy Brennan, Lucy Carnese, Olivia Cosentino, Riley Dee, Anna Dempsey, Alex DiLauro, Kay Gonzalez, Emily Hoberman, Hailey Lassen, Noelle Mullan, Tori Nugent, Elizabeth Orifici, Alyssa Silvestri and Rebecca Tiger.

Learning on National Level

Babylon High School practical arts and business director Claire Reilly has been selected to participate in the 2014 PwC-KWHS Seminar for High School Educators on Business and Financial Responsibility.

The event, which will take place in Philadelphia, seeks to expose participants to an advanced level of learning on business and financial literacy education as well as provide practical skills to incorporate into the classroom.

“One of the areas in which I seek to gain knowledge is finance,” Ms. Reilly explained in her application. “Many of my students go on to major in a business-related subject in college, and I aim to increase the complexity of the material I teach to them while they are in high school.  I also seek to gain skills that could help our students [in our new virtual enterprise program] prepare their business plans and improve their case analysis and presentation skills.”

Ms. Reilly currently teaches the school’s college accounting and college marketing courses. She is also the adviser of DECA, which has more than 110 members.  

Committing to College

The athletic journey of two Babylon High School seniors – Rachel Gregory and Breanna Morrow – will continue at two of the nation’s top colleges next year, as both students have signed National Letters of Intent.

Rachel, a strong defensive player for the Panthers lacrosse team, will be attending Hofstra University as an environmental resources major. While at BHS, Rachel has been enrolled in Advanced Placement classes and is an active member of the school’s extracurricular program. She is the secretary of the National Honor Society and a member of the Tri-M, Science and Foreign Language honor societies. Rachel also performs in the symphonic wind ensemble and takes part in student council.

Breanna has committed to join the field hockey team at Mercy College. The aspiring sports management major plays forward and was a captain of this year’s Babylon team. She is also a member of the student council, class cabinet and DECA club. Breanna is the secretary of the Business National Honor Society.

‘Lend Me a Tenor’


Laughter and applause resounded off the walls at Rowe Hall as Babylon Junior-Senior High School students took to the stage in November to perform the Broadway hit “Lend Me a Tenor.”

During the three-day run, the show told the tale of a famous tenor who was performing worldwide and how those he encountered on his stops scrambled to protect his cloudy reputation. The students prepared for the debut for months, under the leadership of new director and BHS alumnus Derek Kinnear.

On the evening before the show’s opening, the school’s Leo Club hosted its annual dinner and theater event for community senior citizens. Club members served a spaghetti dinner for attendees before escorting them to a complimentary showing of the production.

Steps Add Up to Fun

Babylon Memorial Grade School students are working to stay fit while having fun as they take part in the school’s new walking club.

The program, open to all students, runs once a week and features of number of fun activities rooted in walking. Previously, members participated in a scavenger hunt and obstacle course, among other activities.

Using pedometers, the students track and log the number of steps they take during the activities and are rewarded when they achieve different benchmarks. After a mile, walkers names are read over the loud speaker. After five miles, their names are listed on paper footprints in the cafeteria, and after 20,000 steps, they receive a charm for their shoelaces.

As a kickoff to the first meeting, students had the chance to guess how many steps it would take to walk a mile. Those who guessed correctly, or close, were rewarded with a reusable water bottle.

The school began introducing new recess activities last school year, and has continued that effort this year with an equipment drive.

Creating a Bully-Free Zone

Throughout the year, Babylon Memorial Grade School students and staff members work to create a culture of kindness and compassion. This October, they amped up their efforts as they celebrated Anti-Bullying Month through a series of activities and an awareness campaign.

Students documented their thoughts on what individuals could do to prevent bullying on slips of paper, which were chained together to “block out bullying” in the main hallway, and were shared over the loudspeaker each day. Campaign coordinator and school guidance counselor Francesca Johnson also spoke about the topic during lunch periods and encouraged the students to stand up to bullying.

Students who were “caught” displaying positive behaviors were recognized with “bully buster” and “recess buddy” certificates.

Honorable Mentions at Board Meeting

During the early November Board of Education meeting, the district took time to honor the scholastic and artistic achievements of several students.

Artists Sarah Valencia and Mabel Ye were honored for having their artwork selected for display at the New York State Art Teachers Association Student Art Exhibition at the New York State School Boards Conference in New York City. The students’ pieces were based on a bridge study they had completed in class.

Senior Justin Benoit was applauded for being named an Outstanding Participant in the National Achievement Scholarship Program. This honor recognizes Justin as having scored in the top 3 percent of black Americans who took the 2013 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test.

Although he was unable to attend, the Board also recognized Mohankumar Chintarlapalli for being named a Commended Student in the 2015 National Merit Scholarship Program. This honor recognizes Mohankumar as having placed among the top 5 percent of more than 1.5 million students who entered the 2015 competition by taking the 2013 PSAT/NMSQT.

In recognition of NYSSBA’s School Board Recognition Week, students and staff members also helped celebrate Babylon’s Board for their volunteer service. The elementary school presented the Board with a collage created to show how they help students soar to new heights; the grade school played a video they had created and presented each member with a ceramic apple; and the high school’s theater department offered complimentary tickets to their upcoming production. The district’s administrators association also presented each member with a token of their appreciation, and the K-6 PTA made a donation in the Board’s honor to the Babylon Scholarship Fund.


Homecoming 2014

Although the weather caused many of this year’s homecoming activities to be canceled, the Babylon High School varsity football team proudly scored a win for home team fans on Nov. 1.

Taking on the Center Moriches Red Devils, the Panthers struggled during the first half before digging in and scoring 26 points in the second half. With the win, the team not only secured their spot in this year’s playoffs, but also home field advantage for the first game.

This year’s homecoming court was honored at the start of the game, at which time Brendan McGaley and Corinne Figoski were crowned the king and queen.

Halloween Parade


Babylon Elementary School students and staff members marked this year’s Halloween with the annual school parade.

Dressed in creative costumes – from familiar children’s book characters to superheroes and even a few spooky figures – the group marched around the school’s front circle, waving proudly to cheering family members.

Teachers also coordinated Halloween-themed events in their classrooms, including counting and craft centers.


Safe Halloween

Babylon High School’s student council hosted their second annual Safe Halloween for the community just before this year’s holiday.

Attendees were asked to donate a nonperishable food item for local families for admission to the event. Several clubs at the high school volunteered during the event, decorating classroom doors and handing out treats to attendees. Additionally, the students organized games in the cafeteria and courtyard and a scary book-read in the library.

Inducted into Prestigious Societies

Having satisfied the requirements for membership, many Babylon High School students were inducted into the building’s honor society chapters this October. During the joint ceremony, students were honored for their achievements in the areas of business, Spanish, French and science and inducted into the corresponding honor society.

Friday, November 28, 2014