National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists

Twenty-two seniors in the Great Neck Public Schools have been named Semifinalists in the prestigious 2012 National Merit Scholarship Program (NMSP), having scored among the highest in New York State on the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT), which they took last year. Six are from North High School; 16 are from South High School. The NMSP honors individual students who show exceptional academic ability and potential for success in rigorous college studies. These Semifinalists, who represent less than one percent of seniors in the State, will be identified to colleges and universities in order to increase their educational opportunities. Most Semifinalists will go on to achieve Finalist status in early 2012. Merit Scholarship Winners will be chosen from among the Finalists to receive one of three types of Merit Scholarship Awards.


National Achievement Scholarship Semifinalist

A South High senior has been named a 2012 National Achievement Scholarship Program Semifinalist. The Program is conducted by the National Merit Scholarship Program. It was created in 1964 to recognize academically talented black American high school students. Semifinalist selection is based on scores on the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT), the student took last year. More than 160,000 black students took the 2010 PSAT/NMSQT. Some 1,600 were named Semifinalists based on their cumulative reading, mathematics, and writing skills scores. To ensure national representation, Semifinalists are designated on a regional representation basis. Winners are the highest scorers in the states within each region. Most Semifinalists go on to achieve Finalist status after completing additional requirements. Finalists are eligible for Achievement Scholarship Awards that are announced in April.


Winners at Science Competitions

Nine South Middle School students, now freshmen at South High, were winners in science competitions held last spring.

Long Island Science Congress

At the adjudicated Long Island Science Congress Junior Division, one student received Highest Honors for his research project, "The Mutagenic Effects of Radio Waves on Drosophila Melanogaster." He also received two special awards for his project: the Micro-Optics Award and the Patricia Ford, MD Award. His research concluded that radio waves from a Blue Tooth earpiece can adversely affect the larvae and offspring of the drosophila melanogaster (the common fruit fly). He also found that a MuMetal shield can be an effective barrier against such radiation. Five students received Honorable Mentions at the Science Congress. Two for their research project, "Effects of Sugar on Pea Plants"; two for their project, "Effects of Chewing Gum on Memory"; and one for her research project, "Propagation of Spider Plants in Different Media."

eCybermission Competition

Honorable Mention Awards were also won by three students at the eCybermission Competition, a Web-based science, technology, engineering, and math event, sponsored by the US Army, for their investigation on how to minimize the frequency of birds flying into the glass windows of buildings.

South Middle faculty advisors for the award-winning students were science teachers Gail Keyes, Thomas Schwartz, and Dr. Doris Stanick.


20th Anniversary Faculty Recital

Mark your calendars now for the 20th Anniversary Performance of the Great Neck Public Schools Faculty Recital, on Thursday, Oct. 20, at 7 p.m., at its new, exciting venue--South High School, 341 Lakeville Rd. This "don't miss" event will offer moving and extraordinary instrumental and vocal music performed by district faculty and friends. Be prepared to experience an evening of Carnegie Hall- and Broadway-show-caliber performances from the classics--Mozart, Rachmaninoff, Schubert--to the contemporary--Aaron Copeland, Billy Joel, vocal selections from Phantom, The Producers--and more!

Tickets are $5 (suggested donation). Proceeds will benefit the Music Scholarship Fund. Refreshments will be available. For more information, please contact Dr. Pamela Levy, event coordinator, at (516) 441-4851.


Children's Entertainment Series

The 2011-12 Great Neck Public Schools Children's Entertainment Series will begin on Sunday, Oct. 16, and continues with Sunday performances on Nov. 20, Jan. 8, and March 18. This well-established Series brings affordable and enjoyable cultural experiences into our community at nearby North and South Middle Schools. Performances are suitable for children from kindergarten through the fifth grade. This year's offerings include a variety show, a musical classic, a time-honored story of friendship, and a high-energy kid's rock band--all presented live and onstage. Subscription tickets for the four performances are $15 for children and $24 for adults--a 25 percent savings over individual-performance, at-the-door tickets, which are $5 for children and $8 for adults. Tickets may be ordered using the Series brochure mailed to kindergarten through elementary-school households, or by calling (516) 441-4045. The Birthday Party Program will again be offered; see below for complete information. A synopsis of the four shows in the upcoming Series follows.

The Hey-Ya Brothers Variety Show

This uproarious slapstick variety show will be presented on Sunday, Oct. 16, at 2 p.m., in the South Middle School auditorium, 349 Lakeville Rd. The Hey-Ya Brothers Show is solid fun and a wonderful outing for the entire family. It combines circus skills, magic, and music to create big-time laughter. In the tradition of comedy greats like Laurel and Hardy, Abbott and Costello, and the Three Stooges, the Hey-Ya Brothers present their acts of skill and stillness--where the most simple of tasks turns into outlandish laughs.

Peter and the Wolf

The second Series production, on Sunday, Nov. 20, at 2 p.m., will be a unique recounting of a musical favorite, Peter and the Wolf, held in the South Middle School auditorium, 349 Lakeville Rd. Young Peter decides to go hunting for the wolf that's been prowling around the village. Along the way, he is joined by his friends the bird, the duck, and the cat. All the fun comes to an end when the wolf makes a surprise appearance. A dynamic actor recounts the classic tale of Peter and the Wolf, as a woodwind quintet brings the delightful characters to life through Sergei Prokofiev's music. The program explores the magic of music by using children's imagination to compose a drama, picking the musical themes to match the characters.

Pooh's Winter Tale

Pooh's Winter Tale is the third production in the Series. It will be presented on Sunday, Jan. 8, at 2 p.m., in the North Middle School auditorium, 77 Polo Rd. Winnie-the-Pooh is Christopher Robins' special friend who finds himself involved in all sorts of frantic adventures, assisted by such friends as the gloomy Eeyore, Piglet, and Rabbit. Author A. A. Milne's wit and special understanding of children makes this a delightful family show.

Dirty Sock Funtime Band

The final Series production, on Sunday, March 18, will be the Dirty Sock Funtime Band, at 2 p.m., at the North Middle School auditorium, 77 Polo Rd. The Funtime Band is a high-energy kids' rock group, and was voted "Best Kids' Band" by Time Out NY Kids. The show is an interactive spectacle involving rock band dancers, delightful comedy, and visually exciting costumes. The stunning impact of this stage energy is balanced by the cleverness of the compositions and the smartness of lyrics that offer large words and large ideas, all seasoned with the Band's own brand of belly-laugh comedy. The singing, the comedy, the playing, and the dancing--it all fits together into one big kaleidoscopic thrill.

Birthday Parties

The Birthday Party Program will again be offered at each Series performance. Birthday parties must be scheduled in advance, to be held before or after a show. Performance seating is reserved for party members. Party facility fee is $50. Call the Recreation Department at (516) 441-4045 for more information and/or to make a reservation.

Series Information

The Children's Entertainment Series performances are selected by the United Parent-Teacher Council Children's Entertainment & Cultural Arts Committee. Series brochures, with complete performance and ticket information, have been mailed to kindergarten through elementary-school households. The brochure can also be printed from the district Web site at (click on Programs; click on Recreation Program; scroll down to Children's Entertainment Registration Brochure). A subscription to the Series, which includes tickets to all four shows, is $15 per child and $24 per adult. Tickets for individual shows, available at the door, are $5 per child and $8 per adult. Box office opens one hour before each performance. Shows, which last about one hour and have open seating, are supervised by faculty members and parent volunteers. For more information about tickets or performances, or to make a Birthday Party reservation, call the Office of Recreation on school days at (516) 441-4045.


UPK Registration for 2012-13

Enrollment for the Great Neck Public Schools Universal Prekindergarten Program (UPK) is now open for the 2012-2013 school year. This program is offered to all district residents at no cost. In order to be eligible, children must be 4 years old by Dec. 1, 2012. The UPK program is housed primarily at the Parkville School, 10 Campbell Street, New Hyde Park. Morning and afternoon sessions are available. Bus transportation is only provided to and from the Parkville School for either the morning or afternoon session. In compliance with the New York State Education Department, some students can attend the UPK Program at our collaborative agency: Great Neck Community School, 225 Schenck Ave. Transportation is not provided to this location.

Registration Information

UPK registration is being held at the Office of Registration and Attendance, located in the Phipps Administration Building, 345 Lakeville Rd., from Monday, Oct. 17-Friday, Oct. 28. Please register your child schooldays, from 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m., according to the following schedule: Last Names starting with A-E, register on 10/17 or 10/18. Last Names starting with F-J, register on 10/19 or 10/20. Last Names starting with K-O, register on 10/21 or 10/24. Last Names starting with P-T, register on 10/25 or 10/26. Last Names starting with U-Z, register on 10/27 or 10/28. Please note that a lottery will be held at the close of the registration period for those requesting placement of their child in the morning session. Therefore, it is unnecessary to register ahead of your scheduled time. If you have not received a registration packet in the mail, you can download the registration forms from the district Web site at Please bring the following information to registration (it is not necessary to bring your child): (1) Proof of district residency (deed, current tax bill, or closing statement, if ownership; current signed lease or current rent receipts, if rental). (2) Three pieces of current, official mail. Online mail is not acceptable. (3) Child's original birth certificate. (4) Parent or guardian valid photo ID. (5) Parental control papers (if applicable). (6) Immunization certificate signed and stamped by a physician or other authorized health agency.

For More Information

For more information about registering your child for UPK, please contact the Registration Office at (516) 441-4080, or email For additional information about the UPK program, please visit the school district Web site at and click on the Parkville School logo that appears in the scroll near the top of the screen.


Improve Your Health and Safety at the Adult Program

The Great Neck Public Schools Adult Program offers numerous courses focusing on health, safety, and wellness. Learn to perform Heartsaver CPR for adults, children, and infants; explore ways to effectively deal with hearing loss; understand facts about the Medicare system; for those who've experienced the first 50 years, find ways to stay fit for the next 50; or improve your speech. All classes meet at the Cumberland Adult Center, 30 Cumberland Ave. To register, please call the Adult Program at (516) 441-4949 or visit the Web site for online registration and the current catalog.

HeartSaver CPR: Adult/Child

While open to general public, young adults, parents, and grandparents are especially encouraged to take this class, which is taught under the guidelines of the American Heart Association. Adult/Child CPR will focus on the participants and their role in the chain of survival and will include discussion of prudent heart living, risk factors, genetics, weight management, the chain of survival, warning signs of a heart attack, cardiac arrest, stroke, choking, and practice CPR. Gain confidence to perform under the stress of an emergency situation. Participants will receive a course-completion card that is valid for two years. Class meets Thursday, Oct. 13, 8-10 p.m. or Thursday, Nov. 10, 8-10 p.m. Fee: $15.

Heartsaver Child/Infant CPR is also offered and will address the participant's role in the chain of survival, reducing the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), preventing the most common serious injuries, choking, and practice CPR. Gain confidence to perform under the stress of an emergency situation. Child/Infant CPR is offered on Thursday, Oct. 20, from 8-10 p.m. or Thursday, Nov. 17, from 8-10 p.m. The fee for each course is $15. A material fee of $40 is payable to the instructor for each course. Instructor Stephen Karejwa has been involved in multiple aspects of pre-hospital EMS, as a volunteer firefighter for over 33 years, and as a NYC paramedic for the last 27. He has been teaching CPR to the public for more than 30 years.

Staying Fit for Your Second 50 Years

Get tips on taking care of your body from a physical therapist with over 30 years experience. As your body changes, the rules for safe and effective exercise change too. You need to exercise smarter because there is less room for error. Become an informed consumer by understanding how your body works now and how to keep it working for years to come. Classes include tips and precautions for each area of the body, as well as simple exercises that challenge your muscles to become stronger while protecting your joints. Learn how to improve strength, balance, flexibility, and endurance without expensive equipment. See how you can stay fit doing everyday activities, by using good form and graceful movements. Get the most benefit with the least risk. Each participant will receive the 120-page National Institute on Aging guide for Exercise & Physical Activity. Instructor Anthony Sarola is a practicing physical therapist. He is also an adjunct professor in the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program at Touro College in Manhattan. He enjoys applying his understanding of how we age to help people age better. Class meets five Thursdays, Oct. 20-Nov. 17, from 3-4 p.m. or five Tuesdays, Nov. 22-Dec. 20, from 7:15-8:15 p.m. Fee: $45. Bring two-lb weights.

Understanding Medicare

The fundamentals of Medicare will be explained and your questions will be answered. Many people confuse Medicare with Medicaid, but they are actually very different entities. Medicare is a national health insurance program primarily for adults age 65 and older, while Medicaid is for people with low income. Topics to be discussed include Medicare eligibility, enrollment, and penalties; costs and benefits of Part A (hospital), Part B (doctor visits), and Part D (prescription drug plan); Part C or Medicare Advantage Plans and more. Instructor Faye Mattana is an attorney who has been volunteering at the Medicare Rights Center since 2007 as she transitions to a career in Elder Law. At the Center, she is responsible for answering the Medicare Hotline, which serves older adults and people with disabilities. Class meets Wednesday, Oct. 26, 7-8:30 p.m. or Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2-3:30 p.m. Fee: $15.

Hearing Loss: What You Can Do About It

You can do something about hearing loss! This is a session for those who admit they have a hearing loss and want to hear better, think they have a hearing loss, and even for those who know someone who doesn't think they have a hearing loss. Causes, prevention, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, hearing aids, implants, and assistive-living devices will be explored. The Hearing Loss Association of America, through a series of brief videos, will provide accurate information about hearing loss and what you can do about it. After viewing the mini videos, your questions about the medical aspects of hearing loss will be answered by Elliot Goldofsky, MD, FACS. Your questions about hearing aids and other needs will answered by Audiologist Tracey Lynch AuD, FAAA, CCC-A. Two members of the local chapter of the Hearing Loss Association of America--who have successfully coped with hearing loss--will also be present to interact with you over coffee and brownies. Class meets on Thursday, Oct. 27, at 7:30 p.m. Fee: $10.

Speech Improvement

How you speak may be the determining factor of success or failure in your career or social interactions. Make a good impression when you speak. Be engaging, responsive, at ease, and persuasive. Improve your ability to use appropriate sound, stress, and intonation patterns to facilitate listener comprehension. Individual needs will be addressed. Practice materials will be distributed and used in class. Skills will be reinforced through reading, role playing, and tape recording. Bring tape recorder, if you have one. Instructor Leila Posner is a licensed speech and language pathologist. Her experience in the field includes the City University of New York (CUNY), New York City Board of Education Speech Department, and the Long Island Jewish Hearing and Speech Clinic. Class meets five Mondays, Nov. 7-Dec. 5, 7-9 p.m. Fee: $129 for Great Neck and Manhasset residents; $139 for nonresidents.