A Jericho High School team proved to be the area's best when it comes to ethics.
The four-student team -- Ken Aizawa, Anuhita Basavaraju, Jasdeep Kaur and Ben Kronengold -- took first place in the 2014 Long Island Ethics Bowl, winning out among 26 local teams. A team from The Stony Brook School -- Jacob Brummeler, Margot Rashba, David Jensen, Nick Wang and Rong Liu -- took second place.
Teams were judged on the quality of their contributions to a civil discussion on a given moral dilemma, such as the legalization of marijuana and physician-assisted suicide. The competition was held last month at Hofstra University.
Third place was shared by a second team from Jericho and a team from the Collegiate School in Manhattan. Teams from Bethpage High School and Our Lady of Mercy Academy in Syosset won the "Spirit of the Ethics Bowl" award.
"I am so proud of both teams that competed," Jericho coach Mary Moran said. "My favorite part of the day was to watch them compete against each other in the semifinals -- they were all exceptional."
Stony Brook coach Sean Riley also praised his team: "My students worked very hard, delivered eloquent and compelling arguments, and demonstrated the charity and civility the Ethics Bowl is so laudably striving to promote."
Jericho's top team will compete next month in the National Ethics Bowl at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The local bowl was sponsored by the Squire Family Foundation in East Northport.
Get Moving NY
Clayton Huey Elementary School recently took first place in a countywide contest that challenged students to submit a video, song or poster demonstrating how they stay active.
The contest, titled "Get Moving NY," was coordinated by the New York State Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance's Suffolk Zone Chapter.
Clayton Huey's video contained clips and pictures of students practicing jump-rope in physical education classes. The school was awarded $1,000 toward the purchase of gym equipment.
Horses against bullying
Pal-O-Mine, an Islandia-based nonprofit that provides equine therapy for people with disabilities, has a new program for middle school students that is aimed at fighting bullying.
The goals are to help youth build self-esteem, increase awareness of how their actions affect others, and help them develop better problem-solving skills through the use of horses.
"Horses respond negatively to negative emotions and positively to positive emotions," Pal-O-Mine founder and executive director Lisa Gatti said. "When teens work with horses, they are able . . . to find a more productive, positive way of interacting."
There is no charge to participate in the program. Groups usually meet once or twice a week for three-hour sessions.
Sixteen educators from Suffolk County were named "Bright Lights" by the Association of Suffolk Supervisors for Educational Technologies for their efforts in using technology to boost student success.
Winners and their school districts were: Kristina Amilov of Remsenburg-Speonk, Sonja Anderson of Sayville, Amy Csorny of Babylon, Frank Diehl of Westhampton Beach, Melissa Drewisis of Mount Sinai, Donna Fife of Elwood, Colleen Friel and Katherine Homenides of Half Hollow Hills, Chris Gaudioso of Copiague, Danielle Milazzo of Northport-East Northport, George Ober of William Floyd in Mastic Beach, Susanleigh Perissi of Cold Spring Harbor, Jamie Rogers of South Huntington, Joan Soldano of Patchogue-Medford, Susan Steinman of Deer Park, and Susan Wasser of Mattituck-Cutchogue.
Valentines for vets
Many local schools spread messages of love through activities held in conjunction with Valentine's Day.
In Copiague, Deauville Gardens East Elementary School students crafted cards for the Long Island State Veterans Home in Stony Brook.
"I hope they make the veterans feel happy we're thinking of them," fifth-grader Olivia Healy said.
In Valley Stream, James A. Dever Elementary School students made holiday greetings that were given to Town of Hempstead Councilmen James Darcy and Edward Ambrosino for delivery to local veterans around the Feb. 14 holiday.
"It's our way of showing our gratitude to the people who defended our freedoms so we can enjoy the freedoms we have," principal Darren Gruen said.
In Plainview, Parkway Elementary School students created homemade cards and letters for hospitalized veterans as part of a lesson to help enhance handwriting and creativity. The items were distributed through Nassau County's "Valentines for Veterans" program.