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Future Study Q&A Updated

Click here for an updated version of the Future Study Q&A

Reminder: November 3rd All Students Learning Remotely

As a reminder, all students (elementary, middle schools and high school) will be learning remotely on November 3rd (Election Day). The day will follow the typical Wednesday schedule. The students will then return to school on Wednesday, where elementary will follow their regular schedule and secondary will follow an A-day schedule. (Gold in person, Blue learning remotely)

 

Students Partake in R.A.P Week!

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Each year, Northport-East Northport hosts Recovery, Awareness, Prevention (R.A.P) week to spread the word about substance abuse and important preventative measures. The weeklong event kicked off this year on October 19th with all grade levels finding ways to acknowledge the topic and learn more about how to prevent and address substance abuse. 
R.A.P Week began in April 2012 when a district teacher suggested a substance use prevention day at Northport High School. Since then, the passion and dedication of students, staff and community has expanded the idea, leading to a full week of guest speakers and activities that focus on drug and alcohol prevention.
The district’s substance abuse counselor Anthony Ferrendino shared that R.A.P week is important because the issue affects many families. Whether it’s a loved one who is struggling or a student who is experimenting, substance abuse is widespread and addressing it is crucial to reducing the stigma.  
R.A.P week is executed differently at the elementary, middle and high school levels. For elementary schools, the message is heavy on prevention, and discussion topics include positive goal setting and ways to lead a healthy lifestyle. At the middle school and high school levels, there’s more explicit discussion about substances and how to combat substance abuse.  
Recognizing that this issue is especially pertinent for high school students, the district typically brings in a variety of guest speakers to address the larger group. Speakers have ranged from professional athletes to former students who are in recovery. This year, the district had guest speakers provide a recording and shared them to a dedicated R.A.P Week site, along with past speaker recordings, and has asked teachers to make the videos a class assignment. This ensures students still have access to the critical information and can either discuss or write down their thoughts about the topic. 
“I am beyond thrilled that despite COVID-19, the teams that we have in the buildings were able to figure it out and offer the students what they absolutely need,” shared Mr. Ferrendino. 
 

Norwood Avenue elementary teacher raises money for St. Jude’s through virtual New York City marathon

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Norwood Avenue elementary school music teacher Maureen Edwards ran a very different race this year for the New York City marathon. Having been a runner for 17 years and running her first NYC marathon in 2017, Ms. Edwards has mastered the art of marathon running while raising money for a good cause in the process. 
Since her first race in 2017, Ms. Edwards has raised over $12,000 for St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, which treats children free of charge thanks to generous donations like Ms. Edwards. This year alone, she has raised over $2,600. 
While the race this year was “virtual” and runners had to race individually, Ms. Edwards didn’t let that stop her spirit. “It was very challenging to run a solitary marathon without the excitement and crowds of the usual NYC marathon,” said Ms. Edwards. “However, I was incredibly blessed with family support.” In addition to her children and husband cheering her on from the sidelines with words of encouragement, some Norwood students even came out with signs and cheered as she ran past their homes. 
When discussing how her lessons from running apply to her classroom, Ms. Edwards shared that, “Sometimes life requires grit and we have to buckle down and push beyond our limits to make amazing things happen.  Even when you want to give up, you can't; someone is always counting on you.  This is true for running and it is true for music!”

Northport-East Northport UFSD upgraded to Aa1 rating

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Following the settlement of the district’s outstanding LIPA litigation, Moody’s Investment Service has upgraded the Northport-East Northport School District’s rating to an Aa1. According to the Moody’s press release, the upgrade “reflects a suitable and stable financial position, modest long-term liability profile and sizeable tax base, that will see some near-term decline.”
Despite external factors that often inhibit such an upgrade such as the coronavirus pandemic, the district’s strong decision making, push to settle the LIPA settlement, and resolution of environmental concerns at a district building have proven to be for the benefit, per Moody’s analysis and upgraded rating. 
“The district is pleased to hear of the improved score and feels it is reflective of our actions to provide financial stability to the school community,” said Robert Banzer, superintendent of schools. 
The LIPA suit settlement, agreed upon by the Town of Huntington Board in September 2020, will result in a reduction of LIPA’s tax payments to the District from $86 million to $46 million over the next seven years. This settlement will result in an increase in property tax payments for community home and business owners; however, the district is exploring ways to mitigate this increase.