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South High Team Headed to National Science Bowl


A five-member South High School team won First Place at the recent Brookhaven National Laboratory/Long Island Regional High School Science Bowl. The team of Adrian Chen, Ajay Dheeraj, Yiqing (Elissa) He, Allan Lee, and Melody Yang will now head to Washington, DC, on an all-expense-paid trip to the National Finals, to be held in late April/early May. The South team competed against 18 other Long Island teams. Teams faced off in a fast-paced question-and-answer format, being tested on a range of science disciplines including biology, chemistry, Earth science, physics, energy, and math. South High has taken high awards at the last two Regional Science Bowls, placing Third in 2016, and Second in 2015. Dr. James Truglio, biology teacher and team coach, said, "I love science, I love the competition, and I love watching the team improve and learn every year. We have a ton of fun. It becomes like another family." "Science Bowl is a great opportunity to study things in-depth," said Allan Lee, team captain. "It's a lot of self-study, but when we come together each of us makes an equal contribution." "The National Science Bow continues to be one of the premier academic competitions across the country and prepares America's students for future successes in some of the world's fastest growing fields in science, technology, and engineering," said Dr. J. Stephen Binkley, acting director, Office of Science, US Department of Energy (DOE). The Science Bowl is one of the nation's regional competitions of the 27th annual DOE National Science Bowl (NSB). More than 14,000 students compete in NSB each year. Approximately 265,000 students have participated in NSB in its 26-year history, and it is one of the nation's largest science competitions.


Chamber Musicians Selected for Lincoln Center Concert


The South High School chamber music ensemble of Joshua Lee (cello), Soyoung Park (piano), and Christine Suh (violin) has been selected to perform at the 34th annual Young Musicians Concert of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. The Concert will be held at Alice Tully Hall in April. The ensemble was chosen for this honor based on their performance at the Long Island Regional High School Chamber Music Competition of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center Young Musicians Program. The regional competition is a new component this year to the Young Musicians Program. "The competition was strong this year, with 56 ensembles from 21 schools in the tri-state area applying. South High's ensemble is one of 12 chosen for the Concert," said Derek Balcom, director of education, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. The South High ensemble, along with the other chosen ensembles, will receive two coaching sessions by Chamber Music Society artists prior to the Young Musicians Concert. Mr. Balcom thanked Michael Schwartz, South High performing arts department head, "for the work that you do to bring chamber music into the lives of your students. The hard work and commitment it takes to reach the level we heard from the students at the Regional Competition is awe-inspiring for all of us at the Chamber Music Society." Dr. Pamela Levy is also a coordinator of South's chamber music program. The Young Musicians Program began in 1998. South High ensembles have been selected to perform every year since then, except for two.


Student Selected for Honor Orchestra of America


Megan Xu, a junior at North High School, has been selected to perform with the 2017 Honor Orchestra of America at a concert to be held in Indiana, in early March. She plays the viola. Megan was chosen for the Orchestra after submitting a recording and participating in the audition process. Members of the applied music faculty from some of the country's leading universities evaluated her recording. Joseph Rutkowski is Megan's instrumental music teacher at North High. The Honor Orchestra performance will be conducted by Jeffrey Grogan, Education and Community Engagement Conductor of the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, and Conductor and Artistic Director of Greater Newark Youth Orchestras, InterSchool Orchestras of New York, and New Jersey Youth Symphony. The Honor Orchestra of America is sponsored by Music for All, a non-profit educational organization that has been providing educational and performance programs and events for school bands and orchestras since it was founded in 1975. Music for All also focuses on music and arts education advocacy, providing resources for teachers and communities "to strengthen the message that music education is a vital part of the core curriculum."


Village School Student Recognition


Village School (VS) students were recently recognized by the Great Neck Public Schools Board of Education for contributing to the quality of life at their high school. Award recipients (with their area of achievement in parentheses) are: Nicole Cruz (Quintessential Student), Phoebe Gordon (Academic Achievement), Danielle Gruber (Rookie of the Year), Dylan Schwartz (Most Improved), and Emma Strassberg (Community Service). (Emma was unable to attend the recognition due to illness.) Joining them were Board of Education members: President Barbara Berkowitz, Vice President Lawrence Gross, and Trustees Donald Ashkenase, Susan Healy, and Donna Peirez; Superintendent Dr. Teresa Prendergast, Asst. Supt.-Secondary Dr. Steven Lando, and Village School teachers: Principal Steve Goldberg, Jeffrey Bernstein, Cindy Pavlic, Lauren Sullivan, Megan Wilvert, and Samuel Yellis.


South High Fundraiser Concert--March 7

South High School's Music Fundraiser Concert will take place on Tuesday, March 7, at the school, in the Ruel E. Tucker auditorium, 341 Lakeville Road. (Please note date change from March 10, as appears on the district calendar.) The event begins with a Potluck Dinner, at 6:30 p.m., followed by the Concert, at 7:30 p.m. This performance is a fundraiser for the music program to help defray restoration costs of one of South's two Steinway Grand Pianos. The piano was built in 1958 and is the primary piano in the choral room. After almost 60 years of use, the piano has deteriorated to the point where it requires restoration so that it will last for many years into the future. The Concert will feature performance ensembles and students in the band, choir, and orchestra. Admission to the Concert is $10 for adults and $5 for senior citizens and students. The fee includes the Potluck Dinner that will take place in room 309, followed by the Concert in the auditorium. Patrons are asked to please bring a favorite main-course dish with serving utensils. Please RSVP for the Potluck Dinner to Michael Schwartz, performing arts department head, at, with your name and the number of people in your dinner group. For further information, please contact Mr. Schwartz, at (516) 441-4851, or at


GNPS/TV Current Programs

Programs currently airing on Great Neck Public Schools Television (GNPS/TV) are: Student Filmmakers Showcase, South High Winter Concert II, and South High Cultural Heritage Night. GNPS/TV programs are available on demand, 24/7, on the school district Web site, (click on the GNPS/TV logo near the top of the main page), or by going directly to Programs can also be viewed in the incorporated villages of Great Neck on Cablevision Channel 75 and on Verizon Channel 32. Airing times in program descriptions below are for Cablevision and Verizon viewing.

Student Filmmakers Showcase - GNPS Student Filmmakers Showcase highlights short films produced, edited, and directed by middle and high school students. The Showcase offers a variety of films and styles. Many of the films originate from media classes around the district. In this edition of Showcase, the focus is on public service announcements and silent films. Also in the show, Robert Zahn, district educational cable TV producer/director, interviews student filmmakers about their films, as well as the movie-making process. Student Filmmakers Showcase airing times are: 8 a.m., and 1 and 6 p.m.

South High Winter Concert II - South High Winter Concert II featured the Symphonic Band, Chamber String Orchestra, Chamber Symphony Orchestra, and five choral groups, including the Concert Choir. The Concert was under the direction of Michael Schwartz, performing arts department head/instrumental teacher, and Dr. Pamela Levy, vocal music teacher. South High Winter Concert II view times are: 9 a.m., and 2 and 7 p.m.

South High Cultural Heritage Night - South High Cultural Heritage Night features wonderful songs, dances, poetry readings, and more that celebrate the cultural diversity of the school. Performances included: Chinese Lion Dance, Indian Techno, Korean Techno, Martial Arts, Chinese Yo-Yo, Japanese Parasol, Hispanic Culture Club Dance, Korean Rock Band, performance by the American Sign Language Club, Chinese Ribbon Dance, and more. South High Cultural Heritage Night airs at 11 a.m., and at 4 and 9 p.m.

GNPS/TV Programming - GNPS/TV programming reflects the offerings of the Great Neck Public Schools and the achievements of its students and staff. Programs are student-produced. For further information, please contact Robert Zahn, district educational cable TV producer/director, by e-mail at, and by phone at (516) 441-4676.