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VIDEO: Bellmore-Merrick Challenge Unites Students

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Students from 18 Nassau County schools gathered at High School on May 22 to participate in the Bellmore-Merrick Challenge. 

The event provides an opportunity for special needs students to have fun, develop their strengths and socialize with students from nearby districts. 

Special education chair and co-organizer Melissa Rohr said, “it is one of our favorite days of the year.” 

“It is the purest example of the love and care that we collectively share for all of our students,” she added. “It is such a heartwarming event dedicated to sportsmanship and inclusivity. Participants of all abilities showcased their talents and athleticism in a series of fun-filled activities.” 

Calhoun teachers Heather Riddiough, Melanie Picchioni and Alyssa Sieber were instrumental in the day’s planning. 

The district has been hosting this competition for the past 20 years. 

“It started as a small event with 3-4 districts and has grown tremendously through the years,” addedEmily Paluseo, the district’s director of special education & PPS. 

Students competed in a variety of traditional field day activities, including relays, cornhole, jumping competitions and throwing contests, among other events. 

“It is a wonderful day full of smiles and kids having a wonderful time together exhibiting sportsmanship and support for one another,” Paluseo added. 

Approximately 400 participants and 300 student buddies accompanying the athletes during the day. The student buddies included high schoolers in the district, including members of the Mepham, Kennedy, MAP and Calhoun High School Athletes Helping Athletes clubs, as well as leadership students. 

“Today was a perfect example of the power of Bellmore-Merrick,” Rohr added. “We had student volunteers and faculty representation from all our buildings.”  

Click here to view the photo slideshow.

Date Added: 5/23/2024

Awards Abound for Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting

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Bellmore-Merrick Broadcasting has earned several awards, including its first national first place award in the program’s eight years of existence.   

On May 17, they won the Student Television Network’s Spring Nationals in the category of Mobile Journalism.Juniors Matthew Natof and Makayla Daube and sophomore Brigid Flanagan won for their coverage of the recent solar eclipse in a story entitled “Total Eclipse in the Lot.”  

Senior Maya Stone and Juniors Anthony Ciuffo and Daube also took home a third place Nationals finish for the PSA on academic stress.The program also took home their fourth consecutive top four finish is the category of Best Live Sports in the nation with the BMB Game of the week taking home third place honors. 

The winning continued on May 21 as BMB dominated the 2024 Broadcast Awards for Senior High (BASH) winning five first place awards and two second place finishes. With a thousand students and teachers from across Long Island and Westchester in attendance 2024 was the biggest BASH yet giving out awards in twelve categories. The BMB Morning Announcements under the direction senior Maya Stone took home the day's big prize with the Morning Announcements being named “Best Broadcast.”  

Stone said she’s “been working for today since last year.” 

“After BMB finished second for Best Broadcast last year, I really wanted to end my Senior year with a win for BMB,” she added. 

Senior Tyler Steinberg and the BMB Sports team claimed the award for Best Live Sports. Steinberg and fellow senior Sidd Elisetty along with juniors Luke Yepez and Kyle McQuillan took home first place for their story Ability over Adversity (view here about Elisetty’s older brother Saichan who was born with Coddle Regression Syndrome.  

BMB’s news team led by junior Ryan Marr and sophomores Mya Passanisi, Brigid Flanagan and Nick Jiminez and senior Liam Osborne took home a first-place award for Best School news and a second place in Arts and Culture Feature for a story they did in March while they were in California for the Student Television Network’s National Convention. 

BMB’s sports team of juniors Matthew Natof, Jake Manno and Daube and sophomore Mia Haffner won first place for Best Sports Feature for a story about Long Island Lutheran High School’s Canadian National team star Syla Sword and senior David Ni, Juniors Daube and Natof combine for a second place finish in Best Multimedia Journalism a category sponsored by Newsday, for a story about theAmerican Dream (view here

BMB Sports Director Tyler Steinberg said enjoys the competitive nature of BASH. 

“We go to STN each year where we compete with the big national programs like Christopher Columbus and Carlsbad dominate,” he noted. “It feels good to bring home some awards for Mepham.” 

Looking ahead, BMB hopes to bring home more awards for their studio this June at the Press Club of Long Island awards where the program has two finalists (BMB Morning Announcements and Midweek Update) in the category of Best High School Broadcast and two news packages that are finalists in the categories of Best Student Video Feature and Best Student Sports Feature.     

Click here to view the photo slideshow.

Date Added: 5/22/2024

Color Run Illuminates Bellmore-Merrick Community

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More than 150 community members came out May 18 to participate in the CHSD’s Color Run at Kennedy High School.

Organized by Robyn Einbinder, the social studies chairperson for Mepham High School and student ambassador leader, the event is a progression from the usual One Voice, One Message 5K Run.

“Our student ambassadors volunteered to assist in the organization of this event,” she explained. “We thought it was important to include the entire Bellmore-Merrick community.”

Those student volunteers were on hand for participant registration, color packet purchases and, most importantly, to toss the powdered color at runners, which ranged from toddlers to school administrators.

More than $1,000 in proceeds benefitted the Sunrise Day Camp of Long Island, which serves children struggling with cancer though inclusive summer day camps, year-round programs and in-hospital recreational activities, all offered free of charge.

Click here to view the photo slideshow.

Date Added: 5/22/2024

Budget Passes!

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The 2024-25 Budget has passed! Thank You, Bellmore-Merrick community! 

Yes – 3,748
No – 1,539

Proposition No. 2
Yes – 3,997
No – 1,275

Proposition No. 3
Yes – 3,850
No – 1,218

El presupuesto ha sido aprobado!  Gracias a la Comunidad de Bellmore-Merrick!  
Sí - 3,748
No - 1,539

Proposición no. 2
Sí – 3,997
No – 1,275

Proposición no. 3
Sí – 3,850
No – 1,218

Congratulations to Board of Education members who were elected or re-elected. 

Felicitaciones a los miembros de la Junta de Educación que fueron elegidos o reelegidos.

Bellmore-Merrick Hosts Inaugural Unity Summit

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Bellmore-Merrick hosted the inaugural Unity Summit on May 17 for high school athletes and coaches from across Nassau County. 

Eric Caballero, the director of physical education, athletics, driver education and health, co-chaired a committee with nine other athletic administrators to bring together 400 athletes/coaches from Section XIII athletic programs to promote positivity in sports. Section XIII worked with the group to sponsor the summit.

“Our goal was to be proactive because of the data and trends that we are seeing in athletics throughout Nassau County,” explained Caballero.

Planning began in November for the inspirational event that hopes to reverse negative spectator and sportsmanship trends in athletics.

“What we are hoping for, is to bring light to the fact that we need to be better,” he added. “By having student-athletes attend an event like this, it is our hope that they can gain a different perspective on what it means to be a student-athlete.”

Lead U, a positivity group operated by the Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide, was on hand to engage the audience.

“The crew had a blast connecting with the student athletes and empowering them to become positive, resilient leaders within their school communities,” said Lisa Waterman, a Lead U experience coordinator.

Keynote speaker Mark Leinweaver, an MLB agent and speaker for Why Character Matters, addressed the crowd. Students then broke off to attend workshops led by Kim Conway of Positive Coaching Alliance and Lamar Lee, an athletic leadership consultant, and Leah Jantzen, a guidance counselor Three Village School District, who also serves as the district’s mental health and performance coach for Ward Melville High School student-athletes.

Each speaker relayed messages of building a sense of empowerment and grit while displaying sportsmanship and civility.

“Sportsmanship, civility and unity are the pillars of educationally based athletics,” added Caballero. We can’t lose sight of that.”

Date Added: 5/20/2024

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