High School Ranked 160th by Newsweek

Bayport-Blue Point has been named one of the best high schools in the U.S., ranking No. 160 on Newsweek’s recently released list of America’s Top Schools, earning this distinction with an 89.54 college readiness score and 96.6 percent graduation rate. More than 14,000 schools were considered in the annual ranking.

“In recent years, we have made a push towards self-selection, thereby encouraging students to take the most rigorous courses that they feel they can handle,” said the school’s principal, Dr. Gaurav Passi. “This recognition by Newsweek magazine comes at a time when more and more high school students are taking Advanced Placement and other college preparatory courses. We are proud of our students for challenging themselves and proud of our teachers for guiding and supporting our students towards success in these rigorous courses.”

Sylvan Avenue and High School Rewarded

Two schools in the district – for the third year in a row, Bayport-Blue Point High School, and for the first time, Sylvan Avenue Elementary School – were recently recognized by New York State as Reward Schools.

“This recognition is testament to the hard work and dedication of our students and their teachers,” said the high school’s principal, Dr. Gaurav Passi. “We are proud to be recognized by New York State for high achievement.”

“The faculty and staff at Sylvan Avenue are working hard to meet the expectations of the Common Core through engaging and rigorous instruction for our students,” said Principal Alane Dugan. “New York State’s recognition of Sylvan as a Reward School is a testament to that hard work and dedication of our entire learning community.”

A Warm and Wonderful First Day Back


District faculty and staff welcomed happy students back to classes on Sept. 4. With smiles as warm as the weather outside, students at the high school, middle school and the three elementary schools – returned with confidence, ready to resume their academic careers.

“Today we welcomed 180 members of the freshmen class, and our school is once again full of life and youthful energy,” said the high school’s principal, Dr. Gaurav Passi.

“We all look forward to an exciting year of learning,” said Sylvan Avenue Principal Alane Dugan.


Fun, Hands-on Learning at BOCES Summer Program


With course topics ranging from dinosaurs and cooking to woodworking, robotics and fantasy baseball, learning proved fun for the students who attended the Eastern Suffolk BOCES Summer Enrichment Program at Academy Street Elementary School in the Bayport-Blue Point School District.

Children in grades 1-7 had the option of attending a full- or half-day program. The morning session was comprised of enrichment programs, while recreational activities were offered in the afternoon for those enrolled in the full-day program.

“There was something for every child,” said Mike Luce, director of the program at Academy Street. “The enrichment courses were designed to be hands-on and technology-based. The kids worked in groups, enhanced their creativity, made friends and had fun. We also provided after-care and extended child care hours.”

The program’s Legoland course, taught by Michael Buscemi, was an excellent example of students learning, competing and enjoying themselves.

“Legos allow students to work with patterns and use their creativity to develop projects,” he said. “Over the three-week session, students had the opportunity to apply scientific methods and procedures to build different robot features that helped move the Lego pieces.”

Over in the electronics class, students discovered that electricity is a source of power and energy, and they used electronic equipment to learn the difference between an alternate and direct current. “The students in this course are in grades 5-8 and will be going into tech classes, so it’s important for them to have some background knowledge in electronics,” said teacher Andrew Cangemi. “This course is a great balance between learning, keeping their minds sharp and having fun.”

The Summer Enrichment Program students also had the opportunity to go on field trips to Citi Field, Fire Island and the Vanderbilt Planetarium.




Taking on the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge


Over the summer months, people around the world participated in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge to bring awareness to the disease and donate toward finding a cure. The challenge requires the participant to have a bucket of ice water dumped on themselves, and then nominate several others to also take the challenge and donate.

When the challenge made its way to Bayport last week, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Vincent Butera and fellow administrators accepted. On Aug. 29, Dr. Butera, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction Dr. Tim Hearney, Administrator for Pupil Personnel Services Natalie Doyle, Assistant Superintendent for Finance and Operations Michael Cipriani and Athletic Director Tim Mullins, completed the challenge. Dr. Butera and fellow administrators also nominated 5 BBP Principals, 1 Board of Education trustee, NYSED Commissioner, Dr. John King, Dr. Walter Schartner, Sayville Superintendent of Schools, and Dr. Julie Lutz of ES BOCES. A donation was made to ALS research.

ALS is personal to BBP, as Bill Hutchinson, an earth science teacher who began his career at BBP during the 1960s, passed from the disease in the 1990s. Mr. Hutchinson, known as “Hutch,” was a beloved wrestling and football coach and is credited with elevating the district’s wrestling program to elite status. He was memorialized by the creation of a scholarship, the Hutch Fund Grant, awarded annually by the Bayport-Blue Point Foundation.

The video of the administration’s ice bucket challenge was shared at the close of Dr. Butera’s welcome back speech at Superintendent’s Conference Day and can be viewed below.



Locker Tryouts Mark Transition


Incoming JWY sixth-graders had the chance to try out their new lockers and personalize them with decorations on a special day of transition on Aug. 27.

“It was great to see all of the incoming sixth-graders as they begin to build a home at the middle school,” said Principal Robert Haas. “The only thing better than seeing the excitement on their faces as they explored their lockers and the school, was seeing how much the students helped one another. It was a great way to kick off the new school year.”

“It’s been pretty good so far,” said excited sixth-grader Gabriella Festa, who was being assisted by her cousin Melissa Casey, a sophomore at the high school. “Gabriella couldn’t wait to come today,” noted Festa’s mother.

Several eighth-grade peer leaders were also on hand to guide the new middle school students. “We’ve been helping people all morning,” said eighth-grader Anthony Badalamenti, who was volunteering with his friends Brian Feddern, Michael Grogan and Eric Larsson.

Freshmen Get Oriented


At freshman orientation on Aug. 26, Dr. Gaurav Passi, the school’s principal, welcomed the 181 members of Bayport-Blue Point’s future Class of 2018 and introduced them to the school’s staff.

“Our goal is to give you an overview of the high school so you feel comfortable on Day 1,” said Dr. Passi, encouraging them to set goals and get involved in school activities. “Our job is to make you a successful student.”

Brian McConaghy, one of two assistant principals along with Neil Zarcone, noted that he, like the freshmen, was new to the school. McConaghy talked them through the typical school day, and spoke on various topics including schedules, lunch and lockers, graduation requirements and Regents exams, and the school’s counseling center. He also introduced guidance counselors Ronald Bard, Daniel Harrington and Susan Mullins, saying, “They are not only academic counselors but good listeners – reach out to them when you need the help.”

Class advisers Denise Kelly and Stacie Mauchan discussed how they plan student activities such as homecoming and prom. “All the things that make high school really ‘high school” are what we do,” said Kelly. “We can’t stress enough how fun it is to get involved, and how valuable for your resume,” added Mauchan. “We are looking forward to a fun four years.”

“I suggest your play a sport or join a club,” said senior representative Lizzy Geoghan, a Sportsmanship Award winner on last year’s girls tennis team and goalie for the lacrosse squad. “There’s a club for everyone and being involved is a great resume builder. Find your passion.”

Fellow senior Dylan Mittendorf, a member of band and chamber choir, also addressed the freshmen, discussing the school’s 21 various art and music activities in depth.

Field hockey goalie Meghan Smith was the last senior to speak, offering tips for success. “Get off to a good start on the first day,” she told the younger students, urging them to be organized and avoid procrastination. “While you’re going to make mistakes – everyone does – be sure to learn from them.”

In closing, Dr. Passi told his newest charges, “What is important is that you realize that what you do in high school will really set the stage for college.”

After the assembly’s conclusion, other upperclassmen volunteered to provide tours of the building for the new freshmen.

New York State Assessment Scores

New York State has released some of grades 3-8 ELA and math assessment scores. To date, the district has not received the individual student score reports. Once each student’s individual score report is received they will become available via the parent portal. Parents will receive an email notification as soon as the scores are posted.

Athletic Hall of Fame

The Bayport-Blue Point Athletic Hall of Fame Committee is pleased to announce the Class of 2014. These former BBP athletes will be enshrined in the Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday, October 18 at 10:00 a.m. in the high school cafeteria as part of the homecoming festivities.
Justin Angiolillo (Class of 1988)
2004 LI Championship baseball team
Matthew Tommasino (Class of 2004)
Dan Svendsen (Class of 1979)
Bob Donnelly – Honorary
Caitlyn Densing (Class of 2002)

September 18, 2014