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Sachem High School East Celebrates Class of 2022

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On Thursday, June 23, the Sachem High School East Class of 2022 proudly marched out of the building for the last time to “Pomp and Circumstance,” met with cheers and applause from a crowd made up of friends, family and distinguished guests. Graduates created a sea of red caps and gowns on the football field, as they celebrated their achievements while looking ahead to the future.

The annual commencement ceremony began with the Pledge of Allegiance, led by the graduates who will be entering the armed services. It was followed by the performance of “The Star-Spangled Banner” from the senior chorale.

High School East Principal Louis Antonetti gave up his opportunity to speak to allow a graduating senior to address the class. Earlier this school year, Jamie Anello voiced her positive opinion of Sachem High School East to administration in an email, which left a lasting impression. She was asked to speak at graduation and followed the theme, “It takes a village.”

“I can wholeheartedly say the teachers who have crossed my path during my time here are the reason why I’m still going in the right direction,” Anello said. “I was privileged to have numerous teachers who have touched my life beyond anything that can be learned in a textbook. They care about their students’ lives beyond the four walls of their classrooms. It means a lot to know someone is listening, and when a teacher shows that they care, students feel less alone.”

Following Anello’s speech, the academic leaders of the class were called up to the podium to receive a medal. Salutatorian Michaela Barresi was acknowledged for her achievements inside and outside the classroom, and valedictorian Antonia Pavek addressed her peers, encouraging them to embrace change.

“Today is a momentous checkpoint in our lives,” she said. “Today we must change, as we grow and transition into the people we want to become.”

Class president Yousuf Suleman delivered a speech that reflected on the challenges the Class of 2022 overcame. He noted how the class came together to persevere, and reassured graduates that they are not alone.

“The past 13 years have provided you with the skills you need to create your own success,” he said. “Rely on those around you. The road to success does not need to be a lonely one.”

As remarks concluded, Mr. Antonetti was joined by the Board of Education and District administration to hand the seniors their diplomas. Once the class was confirmed, the seniors turned their tassels and threw their caps in the air, marking the end of their high school careers.

Date Added: 6/27/2022

Commencement Ceremony Honors the Sachem High School North Class of 2022

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A crowd of family and friends filled the stands of the Fred Fusaro Alumni Stadium at Sachem High School North on Friday, June 24, to celebrate the Class of 2022. Graduates came together as a class for the final time as they marched onto the field with “Pomp and Circumstance” playing overhead.

The commencement exercises began with the national anthem sung by the Sachem North Symphonic Choir Seniors, as the graduates who are entering the armed services stood before the Class of 2022.

Principal Andrew Larson addressed the Class of 2022 with words of wisdom before introducing guest speaker Lawrence Zacarese, vice president for enterprise risk management and chief security officer at Stony Brook University. Mr. Zacarese, who is also a graduate of Sachem North, left students with a message of passion and perseverance.

Following the remarks, the top academic scholars of the Class of 2022 were called up to the podium to receive a medal. Salutatorian Samantha Watson was honored in front of the crowd and valedictorian Anna Miller looked ahead to the future, while encouraging her peers to become the authors of their own stories.

“We must embrace new characters and plot twists along the way because, you all know, sometimes the best things in life are unexpected,” she said. “I’m sure we’ll face some critics along the way and our plots will certainly be different. But our storylines are forever intertwined by the fact that we walked the halls of Sachem North together.”

Continuing the ceremony, class president Nooran Khan delivered a speech, thanking all the members of the Sachem community who helped the Class of 2022 reach this moment, including their beloved teachers.

“What I can say on behalf of all the seniors is thank you, to not necessarily what we learned, but to the people who taught us,” he said. “Thank you to the teachers who have made our high school experience unique. Thank you for motivating us, pushing us and teaching us things deeper than the curriculum.”

Board of Education President Alex Piccirillo then began the presentation of diplomas alongside fellow trustees and District administration. After the final diplomas were presented, the graduates returned to their seats where they turned their tassels and threw their caps to the sky.

Date Added: 6/27/2022

New Business Official Appointed

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The Sachem Central School District is proud to announce the appointment of Michele Psarakis, CPA, as the District’s new Assistant Superintendent for Business and Operations.

Most recently, Ms. Psarakis worked as the Assistant Superintendent for Finance and Operations in the West Babylon Union Free School District. She has held this administrative role since 2014 and has been responsible for the fiscal management of the District including budget development and monitoring, supervising payroll and financial accounting. She has experience serving as a member of the Superintendent’s cabinet and the District Emergency Response Team.

Prior to working in West Babylon, Ms. Psarakis served as the chief accountant in the Bay Shore Union Free School District, supervising the daily activities of the business office and assisting with annual budget development. Additionally, Ms. Psarakis has experience working as a senior accountant, managing a CPA firm and in accounting administrator roles.

Ms. Psarakis is affiliated with a number of professional organizations including the New York State Association of School Business Officials and the Suffolk Association of School Business Officials. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree, a Master of Business Administration degree and an Advanced Certificate in Educational Leadership and Administration.

“We are excited to welcome Ms. Psarakis into the Sachem school community,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Christopher Pellettieri. “She will be an excellent addition to our District and we look forward to what she brings with her wealth of experience.”

Date Added: 6/24/2022

Nokomis Makes Donation to Last Chance Animal Rescue

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Nokomis Elementary School recently wrapped up a service-learning project benefiting Last Chance Animal Rescue. Students in Theresa Belluci’s, Jen De Carlo’s and Robyn Greico’s classes presented the organization with a check for $1,056. The donation was the result of a building-wide bracelet sale run by students. Additionally, students created adoption ads that were posted on Last Chance’s social media pages to draw attention to animals in need.

Date Added: 6/23/2022

Exploring the Earth Through Hands-On Experiments

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Fourth graders at Merrimac Elementary School are learning about our changing planet. Recently, they explored how rivers have changed the shape of the United States. Through a series of experiments, the students learned how weathering and erosion creates landforms and rock formations.

Students in Mrs. Mazzaglia’s class worked together in groups to create a stream table to investigate the effect of the flow of water. During the hands-on experiment, they used materials including soil, sand, toothpicks and water. Students observed pieces of sediment coming loose and forming a delta, the beginning of a canyon formation, and sediments being deposited into their catch pans.

In follow-up experiments, students explored how and why rocks form in layers using perfect cast solution. The class completed its unit by learning about fossils and how they are formed.

Date Added: 6/22/2022