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Field Trip Centered on Conservation

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In this high-paced, tech world it is nice to change the style of learning every once in a while, to unravel scientific methods that have stood the test of time.

Students in Jonathan Maletta’s science classes at Earl L. Vandermeulen High School visited the Cold Spring Harbor Fish Hatchery and Aquarium recently to observe a centuries-old aquaculture technique used to sustain the populations of brook trout, our New York State fish. A heritage strain of fertilized eggs were collected and safely transported back to school as part of a conservation program. For the remaining school year, students will care for this environmentally sensitive species.

“Similar to the North America river otter, brook trout are classified as a true indicator species that act as a barometer of environmental health,” Mr. Maletta said. “Their presence or absence tells a story about our ambient environmental conditions. When water runs clean and clear, they survive and thrive.”

According to Mr. Maletta, the presence of brook trout in rivers throughout New England was once an immutable law of nature. Environmental degradation, pollution and climate change have created a multifaceted problem for a species that has a narrow range of tolerance (i.e., a strong preference for cold temperature regimes). As a result, they are extirpated from more than half of their native rivers in lower New England.
With some hope on the horizon, Mr. Maletta’s students will help to reestablish a small population of brook trout on the north shore of Long Island.

Date Added: 11/23/2022

Buddy Program Teaches Collaboration

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Edna Louise Spear Elementary School’s Buddy Program, the cross-grade-level initiative, teamed up fifth graders from Kari Costanza’s class with first graders in Laura Kelly’s class to create cards of gratitude. The older students encouraged the younger ones to write thoughtful messages of appreciation, assisting them with spelling and ideas for the content.

The collaborative activity encouraged students to experience the skills of communication, patience and perseverance. The cards will be sent to the U.S. Marines training camp in Fort Lee, Virginia, to thank the service men and women for their efforts.

Date Added: 11/23/2022

Port Jeff Proud

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The girls varsity volleyball team put in all their efforts at the State Class C final on Nov. 20. The school district takes pride in their teamwork and camaraderie throughout the historic season for the team, coach Charles Hafner and assistant coach Matt Dolan.

“The coaches and I had high expectations of the team going into the season,” Athletic Director Adam Sherrard said. “Coach Hafner, Coach Dolan and all the girls on the team stayed focused and determined throughout the season to make it to the states. It was a phenomenal season led by a strong group of seniors. Their leadership has trickled down to the underclassmen as they asked the coach if they can get to work with off-season workouts preparing for next season just days after returning from the state finals.”

Congratulations to Alexa Ayotte, Caroline Hayde, Erin Henry, Maggie Johnston, Anna Matvya, Maddy Matvya, Bianca Nakagawa, Mia O’Connell, Hannah Pflaster, McKayla Pollard, Ava Reilly, Chloe Sherman, Olivia Sherman, Lexi Verruto, Sophia Wennerod and Gretchen Zimmerman.

Date Added: 11/23/2022

Fifth Graders Host Cards for Cops Campaign

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Students in Christine Wicks and Kym Rambazis’ fifth grade class spearheaded a Cards for Cops initiative and shared the idea throughout the school. Dozens of creative cards with heartfelt messages will be delivered to Beyond the Badge, a not-for-profit organization that was created by two local law enforcement officers that raises mental health awareness in the law enforcement community.

Date Added: 11/23/2022

Students Take the Polar Plunge!

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A heartwarming event for Port Jefferson School District’s Varsity Club took place on Nov. 19 when they participated in the Town of Brookhaven’s annual Polar Plunge to support the Special Olympics. The event, held at Cedar Beach in Mt. Sinai, was a true “freezin’ for a reason” event for the students and co-advisers Mr. Jesse Rosen and Mrs. Deirdre Filippi. As a team, they raised more than $6,925 to date!

Date Added: 11/22/2022