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New Dix Hills school for kids with learning disabilities hosts open house for parents

Winston Preparatory School in Dix Hills, a school

Winston Preparatory School in Dix Hills, a school for kids with learning differences, is having an open house on Thursday. Credit: Winston Preparatory School/Tina Sarnicola

A new Long Island school for students with learning differences such as dyslexia, nonverbal learning disabilities and executive functioning difficulties is just completing its first year, and is having an open house Thursday from 9 to 11 a.m. for prospective parents.

Winston Preparatory School currently has 16 students in the Dix Hills program, and has hundreds of students on campuses in Manhattan, New Jersey and Connecticut, says Keith Oncale, head of school. The school accepts students from third through 12th grades.

Innovative programs include a Playwrights Project in which students write original monologues and have them performed by actors from Long Island theater groups. “This particular class was really working on advanced writing skills,” Oncale says.

Each of the five students was paired with an actor, and the students coached the actors verbally to help them present them at the school. “It was amazing,” says student Amanda Parrot, 15, a ninth grader from Great Neck whose monologue about a friend becoming engaged was performed by Katie Schrader, an actor with the South Shore Theatre Experience in Lindenhurst. “Writing it is a completely different experience from seeing it performed.”

The campus is at 30 Deforest Rd. in Dix Hills. (It isn't associated with the Half Hollow Central School District.) For more information, visit or call 631-779-2400.

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