TODAY'S PAPER
34° Good Morning
34° Good Morning
Long Island

School spirit across Long Island

For years Long Island high school students have been turning out with pride and passion for their school, whether they're rocking their school colors, taking charge of Spirit Week or reigning as homecoming royalty. Check out some school-spirited standouts across Long Island. Know someone we should add? Send nominees to brittany.bernstein@newsday.com

Dylan Forman (right)

Age: 17 School: Paul D. Schreiber Senior High
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Dylan Forman

Age: 17

School: Paul D. Schreiber Senior High School

What's the craziest thing you've ever worn or done to show your school spirit? "Our school has this big wrestling thing every year or so. They had it my freshman year, it's a WWE-style wrestling night and we haven't had it since my freshman year and I wanted to bring it back. I sang the national anthem at the pep rally and afterwards I went on this whole thing, 'We have to bring back the Schreiber Slam.' I started a whole chant, 'Bring back the slam!' and now all the students and teachers are into it, so we're thinking about bringing it back. So I'd say that's the craziest thing I've done."

Why are you so school spirited? "I think our school is really just a great place, (it's) very accepting. I try to spread that wherever I am through the different clubs and my friends and what I'm doing."

What do you love about your school? "I'd say just how much opportunity we have to do so many different things. The ability to take so many different classes and be in so many clubs that really can try and make a difference."

Will you still show your school spirit in college? "I think so, but I think it'll be a little more difficult because of how big the community is. But I think it'll be more of like a 'Rah, rah, I'm into the whole school thing' than an exhibiting the values through the classes and the clubs -- more like getting into the football games and the school spirit that way. And I will, of course, be involved and stuff there. I think college as a culture is more of a bigger thing. I think my high school is a tight knit thing."

Did anyone have a role in you becoming so school spirited, and why? "I think the teachers in the history department. They were some of the coolest teachers I had early on. They got me into that culture. I'm very close with the teachers and as a result of my closeness with the teachers in the history department I got involved in the wrestling thing and so many other activities. I wouldn't say it was one teacher in particular."

What are you involved in at school? "I'm in the school plays, I play baseball on the varsity team and I'm the president of the gay-straight alliance. I also work with this [English as a second language] buddy system. We're working on getting the ESL students a native speaking buddy so they can get more assimilated in the school. [I'm also] in Women Empowerment Club, a feminist group for forwarding women's rights and stuff in school and beyond."

Jen Tumino

Age: 17 School: Carle Place High School What's
Photo Credit: Emiline Biggin

Age: 17

School: Carle Place High School

What's the craziest thing you've ever worn or done to show your school spirit? "Up until 10th grade I painted my face every homecoming and spirit week. So I painted my face green once and once it was all red. I wore wigs, too. I had like scarves and different props. I wore all green -- green socks, green shoes, basically green everything or whatever the title of the spirit day was."

Why are you so school spirited? "Well, for our school it's like a really small school so I feel like if one person can be spirited it inspires other people to be spirited too. And when I started painting my face everyone just expected me to do it, so I had to live up to the standard and keep making everyone laugh. Everyone just expected it so I had to keep showing everyone I could go all out."

What do you love about your school? "Everyone is so close and all the teachers care so much about their students. Even teachers I don't have anymore, I see them in the hallway and we're still close and [they] still care about everyone. Everyone is so close, everyone knows everyone and is so friendly. It's such a nice environment."

Will you still show your school spirit in college? "I'm playing field hockey at Oneonta and I'm going to be an education major I think. I think so, probably. I plan on it maybe more [than high school]. [I will] probably paint my face a little more and wear more wigs just to make everyone laugh."

Did anyone have a role in you becoming so school spirited, and why? "Well, when I was in seventh grade I saw a few of the seniors all dressing up and I was like, 'I can be like them.' One of my teachers would also go all out and she inspired me too. She was like, 'Jen, you should do this,' and I started dressing up and she loved it. She would just dress up, she would paint her face and she would wear all the colors for all the spirit days. She would do them with us, so it would be fun.'"

What are you involved in at school? "I'm on varsity field hockey, varsity basketball and varsity lacrosse. I'm in the National Honor Society and Spanish Honor Society and the Music Honor Society [and] Key Club."

Victoria Russo

Age: 17 School: St. Dominic's High School What's
Photo Credit: Brittany Bernstein

Age: 17

School: St. Dominic's High School

What's the craziest thing you've ever worn or done to show your school spirit? "I wore crazy pink antlers during Battle of the Classes -- every grade has a different color and ours was pink. I also usually cover my face in different patterns of rhinestones."

Why are you so school spirited? "Because I love my school! I think it's super important to get people to be happy and jumping. You're only in high school once, might as well make the best of it."

What do you love about your school? "I love the people, everyone is really close and so nice to each other. It's a smaller school so everyone is like a family."

Will you still show your school spirit in college? "Oh yeah, if anything even more. I'll go all out in college!"

Did anyone have a role in you becoming so school spirited and why? "My mom is really spirited too. She helps me put my jewels on my face. And my friends too. It's more fun when everyone else is spirited too!"

What are you involved in at school? "I'm the senior class vice president, vice president of National Honor Society, president of Italian National Honor Society, a member of the Math and Science Honor Societies, vice president of Health and Science Career Club, a member of Interact Club, a Eucharistic minister, and play varsity tennis and golf. I'm very busy, I've got to get my spirit everywhere."

Eva Colon

Age: 16 School: Bellport High School What's the
Photo Credit: Brittany Bernstein

Age: 16

School: Bellport High School

What's the craziest thing you've ever worn or done to show your school spirit? "There's a lot of them. I've worn coconut bras to homemade hula skirts to tacky sweaters that literally pop out, like a 3-D digital fireplace on me."

Why are you so school spirited? "I just love seeing other people happy and I feel like when I see the crazy things, people laugh and have fun and I like seeing the spirit in them come out."

What do you love about your school? "I love how energetic everyone is ... for events like homecoming, we all come together and we have so much fun together."

How will you show your school spirit next year? "I think for Red Day I'm going to go full-out red. Face paint, body suit, everything."

Did anyone have a role in you becoming so school spirited and why? "I think it was my mom, she's always happy and energetic and she's always supporting me with these things. She always has such creative ideas and she always helps me [with] DIY creative stuff."

What are you involved in at school? "Girls volleyball and student class, I'm the class of 2020 class president."

Raleesha Sykes

Age: 13 School: Riverhead High School What's the
Photo Credit: Brittany Bernstein

Age: 13

School: Riverhead High School

What's the craziest thing you've ever worn or done to show your school spirit? "I painted my whole face blue and white, I did my hair blue, I had a jersey on, I put my hand prints in blue and white and I had blue sneakers on."

Why are you so school spirited? "My whole life has been in Riverhead so when things like [homecoming] come around I'm for it all, so I do it all."

What do you love about your school? "I love that they make opportunities for kids to stay out of trouble and we believe in what we are. We're the Blue Wave!"

How will you show your school spirit next year? "I'm going to do football, so I'm looking forward to that. I'm going to do more clubs and stuff, try to get involved more."

Did anyone have a role in you becoming so school spirited and why? "My brother played a big role, he was a big leader and I looked up to him a lot."

What are you involved in at school? "I'm in art club and I used to do step [dance]. I'm going to get into more things."

Kaylee Thatcher

Age: 15 School: Bellport High School What's the
Photo Credit: Brittany Bernstein

Age: 15

School: Bellport High School

What's the craziest thing you've ever worn or done to show your school spirit? "I've worn a lot. I've worn tutus, I've worn face paint, I've worn really high socks, tights, really anything you can think of, I've probably worn. Jewelry, everything."

Why are you so school spirited? "I genuinely enjoy going to school here and, you know, it's fun when you're school-spirited. I just feel like when you're school-spirited you're more into things and it's better than being on the sidelines and not doing anything."

What do you love about your school? "For games like this and for important events we can all actually come together and all be friends and all enjoy such a big event together."

How will you show your school spirit in college? "I'm going to try to wear more than what I've worn in the past. More crazy things, maybe dye my [hair] tips colors, you never know. Just whatever I've done in the past, try to top it by doing more."

Did anyone have a role in you becoming so school spirited and why? "Probably my parents because they were very school spirited, like my mom I think was captain of everything she's ever done. So, we're just a very sporty, competitive family so I'm just always trying to top other people. It's how I'm wired."

What are you involved in at school? "I actually just started an American Sign Language club. I've done the play; I've done cheer; I'm going to try out for dance team soon and student council."

Jack Forbes

Age: 17 School: Oceanside High School What's the
Photo Credit: Ian J. Stark

Age: 17

School: Oceanside High School

What's the craziest thing you've ever worn or done to show your school spirit? "I painted myself with a letter, with friends, so we could spell out 'Oceanside.'"

Why are you so school spirited? "I was around people like that since I was a freshman, and they inspired me."

What do you love about your school? "I really love the way our school comes together to do things."

How will you show your school spirit next year? "I'm going to West Virginia, and I plan to be in the stands for games there, too, being just as crazy."

Did anyone have a role in you becoming so school spirited, and why? "An Oceanside alumni named Kevin O'Keefe, who was a senior when I was a freshman, and he was the president of the Student Section 309 [the group that goes to home and away games to cheer] then." (Forbes is the president of the group now, and the sailor hat he wears is the same O'Keefe wore).

Jessie Kash

Age: 16 School: Hicksville High School What's the
Photo Credit: Jennifer A. Uihlein

Age: 16

School: Hicksville High School

What's the craziest thing you've ever worn or done to show your school spirit? "Probably what I'm wearing now. I usually go all out with the socks, and the headbands and the bandanas, the necklaces and whistles and painting my face; it's really fun. I put on orange and black dots on my face."

Why are you so school spirited? "I just want to show that I like my school, I love being here, I love supporting everyone: all the teams and all my friends."

What do you love about your school? "I love that sometimes we can all come together and be really fun and care about one another, a lot."

Did anyone have a role in you becoming so school spirited and why? "The school in general. Seeing all of the older people [upper classmen] going all out for it, makes me want to do it too and show the younger kids who just came into the high school that they want to do the same thing."

Will you be school spirited in college next year? Totally, why not? I'll be a freshman in college so it will be really fun having fun in my first year.

What are you involved in at school? "I'm usually part of the Thespians [drama club]. I'm also part of the 2020 club for our proms to help fundraise. I dance at Ella Marie School of Dance."

Kurren Johnson

Age: 15 School: Bellport High School What's the
Photo Credit: Brittany Bernstein

Age: 15

School: Bellport High School

What's the craziest thing you've ever worn or done to show your school spirit? "A tutu for breast cancer awareness."

Why are you so school spirited? "Because I love my school!"

What do you love about your school? "Because [it's diverse] and everyone, most of the time, gets along."

How will you show your school spirit in college? "I'm going to get another mullet. I had one last year."

Did anyone have a role in you becoming so school spirited and why? "Shoutout to my math teacher, Ms. Moriarty."

What are you involved in at school? "The lacrosse team, the golf team and Athletes Helping Others."

Katie Devaney

Age: 17 School: St. Anthony's High School. This
Photo Credit: Brittany Bernstein

Age: 17

School: St. Anthony's High School. This is her first year at the school after being displaced by Bishop McGann-Mercy High School's closing in June.

What's the craziest thing you've ever worn or done to show your school spirit? "One time [at Mercy] I wore a full morphsuit, it was completely green and I wore shorts over it, a mercy shirt antennas with little pom-poms on the end of it. Everyone made fun of me and I also wore a cape over it."

Why are you so school spirited? "I honestly don't know, I just love seeing people have fun so I guess I just make myself have fun and I love seeing other people smile."

What do you love about your school? "For St. Anthony's I just love how friendly everyone is. Everyone has so much spirit and they're all so friendly. They do a lot more stuff than my past school. At Mercy, I loved how close-knit everyone was and you knew everyone so it was fun to interact with everyone. And not knowing anyone here is a little hard."

Will you show your school spirit in college? "I want to become a nurse and I'd like to go to UVA, hopefully yes if I attend a lot of games and stuff then I definitely will."

Did anyone have a role in you becoming so school spirited and why? "Not really. I never had anyone that showed me how to be so spirited. My older sister, she was more toned down. My mom did encourage my outgoing-ness though."

What are you involved in at school? Devaney was nominated for St. Anthony's homecoming court. "After my homecoming interview I had to write about what I did at Mercy and one of them was Student Organization so a teacher noticed I was on Student Organization and the next day he asked me to be on the student council here. So I'm on student council, I'm on the executive board. I'm also in National Honor Society and Kolbe Society. At Mercy, I did do National Honor Society, Science National Honor Society, Math National Honor Society and then I also did student council. I also did lacrosse and volleyball."

Sydney Johnson

Age: 17 School: St. Dominic's High School What's
Photo Credit: Brittany Bernstein

Age: 17

School: St. Dominic's High School

What's the craziest thing you've ever worn or done to show your school spirit? "My friends and I wrote 'Bayhawks' on our stomachs and made posters for all of the football boys."

Why are you so school spirited? "I like that the school has spirit, it can't be boring, it has to be fun. We can't leave the freshman without teaching them how to have school spirit."

What do you love about your school? "I really love all of the little things like pep rally, homecoming and Battle of the Classes. I've gone to homecoming every year, even in eighth grade when I decided to go to St. Dominic's for high school."

What are you going to do to top your school spirit next year? "We're going to go crazy at Battle of the Classes [later this year] and get more posters and make even more signs."

Did anyone have a role in you becoming so school spirited and why? "Yes, my parents are also crazy like me. For the powderpuff game [at halftime] my dad said, 'Let's make sure you make some plays ahead of time.'"

What are you involved in at school? "I play on the tennis team, we were undefeated last season and so far we're undefeated this season. I'm also on the lacrosse team and in Interact Club -- a community service club."

Comments

We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.

Latest Long Island News