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Future Focus

Future Focus

An emphasis on future plans was the theme for the district on May 22 when the high school and middle school hosted alumni, local universities and organizations for Alumni Day and the Career and College Fair.

The high school celebrated Annual Alumni Day by welcoming back recent graduates for a workshop with the senior class. The alumni spoke to the soon-to-be graduates about college life including scheduling, dorm life, selecting a major, time management and other aspects of going to college. 

The addition of the Career and College Fair this year allowed students at the middle school and high school to speak to representatives from higher institutions such as Farmingdale State College, Molloy College, LIU Post, Johnson and Wales University and Nassau Community College. Local organizations such as the Long Island Nets, the West Hempstead Public Library and Winthrop Hospital were also on hand to offer potential career paths.

The district thanks all of the alumni, colleges and working professionals for sharing advice and encouragement to students as they prepare for the future.

Award Winning Presence at Long Island Science Congress

Award Winning Presence at Long Island Science Congress photo
Award Winning Presence at Long Island Science Congress photo 2
The district was represented by students from the middle school and high school at the Long Island Science Congress on April 9 and 10. A total of 14 West Hempstead students earned awards for their presentations.

High school students Jordan DeJesus and Jaci Gillen were each presented with the Achievement Award for their projects in the Senior Division. Raees Bacchus, Barrett Schenk, Nicholas Solar and Sophia Varone all earned Honorable Mention Awards.

Middle school student Ariana DeJesus garnered the Achievement Award for the Junior Division while Lauren Ford and Grace Leppard were each presented with the Meritorious Award. Xharlize Avila, Christina Gabayan, Xavi Galdamez-Febus and Matthew Watterson all earned Honorable Mention accolades.

“Our students performed very well and should be proud of their accomplishment,” said Director of STEM Joseph Cangemi.

2019 Art Show

Spring 2019 Middle School Concert

Spring College and Career Day

Budget Vote Results


Budget Passed

The Budget Has Passed. Thank You!
Yes- 1,233
No- 1,012

El presupuesto ha sido aprobado. ¡Gracias!
Sí- 1,233
No- 1,012

Congratulations to Karen Brohm on winning the Board election.

Felicitaciones a Karen Brohm por ganar la elección de la Junta.

Congratulations to Patricia Greaves on winning the Board election.

Felicitaciones a Patricia Greaves por ganar la elección de la Junta.

Congratulations to Gavi Hoffman on winning the Board election.

Felicitaciones a Gavi Hoffman por ganar la elección de la Junta.

The Nine-Period Day Returns

We recently announced that the district's secondary schools would be reinstating the nine-period school day schedule, beginning with the 2019-20 school year, as a way to expand learning opportunities for our students, and with no impact on the budget. There have been some inaccuracies on social media surrounding this change, and we want to clarify with accurate statements.

We can make this change without additional cost to the district for several reasons. Due to decreases in enrollment, including the decision by the Island Park school district to not renew their agreement with us, our enrollment at the High School has decreased. We respect Island Park's decision and wish them well in the future. Also, the restructuring has allowed us to move some High School-level classes to the Middle School.

While there was a reduction in secondary staffing levels when we first switched to the eight-period day, we have not made any further reductions. With the combination of staffing levels remaining flat and enrollment decreasing, we now have the capacity, with our current staffing levels, to add the additional period at the secondary level without having to hire any new staff. As a result, the district will not incur any additional costs due to the implementation of the nine-period day at the secondary level.

As always, please reach out to us with questions at 516-390-3100.

Cornwell Spring Concert

GW Spring Concert

Touch a Truck

Touch a Truck

The Chestnut Street School welcomed various local community trucks for a larger than life “Touch-a-Truck” event on May 8.

Organized by parent Christine Simmons, trucks from the Sanitary District No. 6, the West Hempstead Fire Department, the police department and the Town of Hempstead Highway Department provided a show-and-tell for kindergarten students. Various large trucks and automobiles formed a circle in the parking lot for students to explore. 

Students had the opportunity to look, touch and sit in a fire ladder truck, an ambulance, a pay loader, a sanitation truck and a police car. Some of the professionals also showcased their tools of the trade, such as a full fireman outfit, a stretcher and various tools.

“We greatly appreciate the local organizations for taking the time to visit our students with such a unique activity,” said Principal Faith Tripp. “Thank you to Mrs. Simmons for her organization and planning of the event.”

A First for Biliteracy in West Hempstead

A First for Biliteracy in West Hempstead
Senior Neven Vaduthala will become the first graduate in school history to have the New York State Seal of Biliteracy included in his diploma.

The State Seal of Biliteracy was signed into law in 2012 and was established to recognize high school graduates who have attained high levels of proficiency in listening, speaking, reading and writing in one or more languages, in addition to English.

Neven completed steps that were required in order to earn this honor. He wrote an essay on the history of social equality in America in both English and Spanish, inspired by the book “One Hundred Years of Solitude” by Gabriel Garcia Márquez.

“I really learned a lot about myself as I went through this application process for the Seal of Biliteracy,” said Neven. “It was beneficial in doing some self-reflecting as a student in addition to a great highlight on my resume.” 
Following submission of both his essays, Neven went through an interview process in which he discussed the impact of English and Spanish in his life as he has been studying Spanish since seventh grade. Following the interview round, he was notified of his selection as the first West Hempstead student to earn this high honor. 

“Neven is a trailblazer for future West Hempstead students that can speak and write in two or more languages,” said Principal James DeTommaso. “He sets the bar and inspiration for graduates in years to come to also apply for this tremendous honor.”

The district congratulates Neven on being bestowed the Seal of Biliteracy and wishes him luck as he enrolls at Northwestern University this fall.

Bowling Over Knowledge

Bowling Over Knowledge photo

Teams of students at West Hempstead High School put their wide array of knowledge to the test during the school’s Quiz Bowl competition on May 3.

Groups competed against one another throughout the day in various locations of the high school and answered questions on topics ranging from pop culture to academics. Student volunteers coordinated the head-to-head games by asking the questions and keeping score.

The team “Super Neighbors,” comprised of Katelyn La Rosa, Kelley LaRosa, Joseph Tudisco and Victoria Tudisco, defeated “Delta Mind” to take on a team of teachers in the final round. Teachers Ariana Casa, Michele DiRico, Jared Kufta and Julie Weiss earned the title of Quiz Bowl Champions by winning the final game.

“Thank you to everyone that volunteered and participated in this year’s Quiz Bowl,” said teacher Jacqueline Lawson. “Congratulations to the teacher team for winning!”

Touch a Truck

A Period of Opportunity

A Period of Opportunity
The West Hempstead Union Free School District’s secondary schools will be reinstating the nine-period school day schedule starting in 2019-20, as announced at a Board of Education meeting on May 7.

Earlier this year, the Board of Education and Superintendent of Schools Daniel Rehman discussed their goal to bring back the nine-period schedule as a way to expand learning opportunities for students. This change has no impact on the budget. 

“We look forward to this wonderful opportunity for our students and thank all of those involved,” said Board of Education President Karen Brohm.

Back to the Tank

Back to the Tank photo

Seventh graders in Dean Bourazeris’ social studies classes combined their knowledge of the past and power of persuasion on April 29 and 30, when they pitched historical inventions in a “Shark Tank” style format.

Student groups selected and researched historical innovations such as the cotton gin, the telegraph, the steam engine, the Erie Canal and the National Turnpike. They delivered presentations that conveyed the creations as new products, in hopes of catching the interests of peers and Mr. Bourazeris – the event’s investors. Groups used informational slides and constructed replicas of their inventions to bring a full business proposal to their audience members.  

Following the presentations, Mr. Bourazeris and the audience filled out evaluation and peer feedback forms on Google Chromebooks to offer glow and grow moments for each group. Students also filled out questionnaires in which they described what they learned about each invention, expressed whether or not they would they invest in it and ranked its historical significance.

“The students made compelling presentations and pitches about the significance of their historical products,” said Mr. Bourazeris. “They used the fun of the pitch while also helping to educate their peers on important history.”

2019 High School Top 25 Dinner

Connecting Countries Virtually

Connecting Countries Virtually photo

West Hempstead High School welcomed 20 students from Bruchsal, Germany, to experience a day in the life of a student in the United States. The recent gathering, held on April 15, marked the fifth consecutive year of this partnership.

The guests were visiting New York to participate in the Virtual Enterprise Youth Business Summit at the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal, also attended by West Hempstead students, on April 17. During their time in West Hempstead, the German students were given a tour of the high school and treated to a New York style lunch that included pizza and local desserts. They were intrigued by the school’s gym classes, clubs and cafeteria as their buildings back home do not have those elements.

Each group of students also shared and presented information on their VE firms and compared similarities and differences in strategies and methods. The guests also showcased information about their hometown, school system and education.

“We hope the students from Bruchsal enjoyed their visit as much as we enjoyed welcoming them to West Hempstead,” said business teacher Michael Silberman. 

Pushing Awareness, Kindness and Respect

Pushing Awareness, Kindness and Respect photo

The West Hempstead Union Free School District’s George Washington School has incorporated the importance of kindness, self-regulation and tolerance along with autism awareness with in-classroom lessons.

Social worker Elizabeth Lindner and guidance counselor Matthew Caruthers held push-in activities with classes during the week of April 8 to enhance the spotlight on Autism Awareness Month. When visiting classrooms, Ms. Lindner and Mr. Caruthers projected a poem on autism awareness written by a young girl named Bella. The poem acknowledges students with autism and how they may be different but should be treated the same.

After reading the poem as a group, students answered questions to help analyze the meaning and purpose of Bella’s poem. The lesson highlights how George Washington is enforcing to students the importance of kindness, self-regulation and tolerance of others. 

Ms. Lindner and Mr. Caruthers will continue the year with further push-in lessons on accepting responsibility for one’s actions and conflict resolution.

Sights on the Future

Sights on the Future photo

Then middle school guidance department visited seventh and eighth grade classes on April 15 to help students participate in a “Naviance Day.”

Naviance is an American college and career readiness software provider that the middle school’s guidance department has introduced in an effort to provide students with college planning and assessment tools. During science class, guidance counselors directed students through surveys intended to help steer their future paths. Seventh grade surveys concentrated on individual learning styles while eighth graders focused on possible career fields.

“These surveys are a helpful indicator for students to prepare their future learning and potential educational direction,” said guidance counselor Angela Sigmon.

2019 High School Class Night

2019 High School Honor Society Inductions

Health is Your Wealth

Health is Your Wealth photo

Students at Cornwell Avenue Elementary School participated in a Health and Wellness Day program on April 5, thanks to a collaboration between the PTA and Northwell Health Cohen Children’s Medical Center.

The event showcased the importance of healthy habits and behaviors in everyday life. 

Clinical and non-clinical healthcare professionals from various service lines and specialties were on hand to speak to students about topics such as nutrition, dental health, stretching, staying active, bike safety and others.

Thank you to the PTA and Cohen Children’s Medical Center for stressing the importance of many health and wellness topics to our students! 


Northwell Health Visits Cornwell


Senior Sirena Brown officially made her decision regarding the next chapter of her educational and athletic path on April 1, when she signed a National Letter of Intent to join the cheerleading team at Long Island University.

Earlier this year, Sirena was also honored as a recipient of the LIU Post Presidential Scholarship due in large part to her participation in the LIU Post Summer Honors Institute last July. Collectively, the two honors have afforded Sirena the opportunity to attend LIU on a full scholarship and major in accounting.

“We are extremely proud of Sirena as she has chosen to attend nearby LIU after raising the bar as a student-athlete in West Hempstead,” said Principal James DeTommaso. 

2019 High School Fashion Show

A Full Irish Lesson

A Full Irish Lesson photo

Gina Milici’s second-grade class at Cornwell Avenue School welcomed a special guest on March 18 when parent Hazel Chrobet visited to share a lesson on the Irish culture.

Mrs. Chrobet, a native of Ireland and mother of second-grader Heather, spoke to the class about many traditions and myths surrounding the culture. She mentioned how she grew up going to a school that spoke Irish and described mornings on her family’s farm and the similarities found between schools in Ireland and the United States. She also treated the students to scones and a shamrock plant.

“Thank you to Mrs. Chrobet for visiting our classroom to educated the students more on the traditions of Ireland,” said Ms. Milici. 

WHUFSD Photo Gallery

2019 High School Fashion Show