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Great Neck teams sweep Science Bowls

A team from Great Neck South High School

A team from Great Neck South High School won first place in the high school competition of the Long Island Regional Science Bowl. From left to right are team members Matthew Tsui, David Wang, Anthony Zhan, Jansen Wong and Bradley He, along with coach James Truglio. Credit: Brookhaven National Laboratory

The Great Neck School District swept the top spots in this year's Long Island Regional Science Bowls. 

Teams from Great Neck South High School and Great Neck South Middle School placed first in the high school and middle school competitions, respectively, at Brookhaven National Laboratory. The middle school has won the regional title for three consecutive years.  

For winning, the teams received all-expenses-paid trips next month to the national finals near Washington, D.C., where they will be joined by the winners of all 112 regional competitions nationwide.

"We're more like a group of friends than a competitive team, so it's been really fun," said Anthony Zahn, the high school team's captain. The team's other members are Bradley He, Matthew Tsui, David Wang and Jansen Wong.

"We have been practicing since October and were working really hard as a team," said Erin Wong, the middle school team's captain. The team's other members are Colin Hu, Luke Huang, Emily Tsui and Zican Zhang.

The science bowl is a "Jeopardy!"-style competition with a four-division round-robin format that features topics including biology, chemistry and physics. The winners from each division faced off in a double-elimination series.

The top 16 high school and middle school teams at the national level will win $1,000 for their schools' science departments. 


New principals

Peter Pramataris and Elizabeth Hine have been appointed principals of Mount Sinai High School and Mount Sinai Middle School, respectively. They had been acting principals of their schools since August.

Pramataris previously served nine years as the middle school's principal and replaced Robert Grable, who died  last summer after being the high school's principal since 2010. Hine previously was assistant principal of Mount Sinai Elementary School.

"Over the last seven months, both Mr. Pramataris and Ms. Hine clearly demonstrated their strong leadership skills and that their prior administrative experience has benefited them in their smooth transition to their new assignments," Mount Sinai School District Superintendent Gordon Brosdal said. 


Black History Month

Many local schools hosted educational events and activities last month in recognition of Black History Month.

In Amityville, Northeast Elementary held a musical tribute in which children performed songs such as the civil rights anthem "We Shall Overcome" and Wallace Willis' spiritual "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot." It also included class posters about important individuals in black history and portraits of Martin Luther King Jr.

In Greenlawn, Harborfields High School hosted a celebration highlighted by a motivational speech from former New York Giants cornerback Perry Williams. The evening, which had a theme of "Step Up to Make a Difference," also consisted of dance routines, poetry recitations and musical performances by students.

In Westhampton Beach, AP U.S. History students researched the Negro Baseball League and created posters exploring the discrimination that league members had faced.


Female Diversity Award

Six Long Island schools — Academy Charter School in Hempstead, Cold Spring Harbor High School, Mineola High School, Our Lady of Mercy Academy in Syosset, Sacred Heart Academy in Hempstead, and Smithtown High School East — are among about 800 recipients nationwide of the College Board's AP Computer Science Female Diversity Award for 2019.  

To earn the designation, schools achieved a percentage of female examinees that met or exceeded that of their female population, or reached 50% or higher female representation in either of the following courses: AP Computer Science Principles or AP Computer Science A.

Mineola was one of only three schools statewide to meet the criteria in both courses.

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