Earlier today, Wheatley held its 62nd Commencement Exercises — this year in celebration of the Class of 2019! The 12:00 noon ceremony included three wonderful musical performances and four impressive student speeches. It was a moving ceremony befitting this wonderful graduating class.

Congratulations to all of the graduates and their families!

You can view a copy of the Commencement Program here: Graduation Program 2019

Graduation Program 2019

[Thanks to Melisa Byrns for some of the photos!]

The Class of 2019 is Celebrated at Wheatley’s 62nd Commencement Exercises!

Celebrating Excellence at the 2019 Nassau County Superintendents Breakfast!

Earlier this morning, Dr. Kanas and I were accompanied by two of our graduating seniors, Jamie Ryan and Kenton Wu, at a wonderful breakfast at the Crest Hollow Country Club. Organized by the Nassau County Council of School Superintendents, this “Celebrating Excellence” breakfast recognizes the Valedictorians and Salutatorians of all of Nassau County’s public high schools.

Although Wheatley does not name a valedictorian or salutatorian, we send two Honor Students to represent our school at this wonderful event. These Honor Students are selected by the Wheatley Scholarship Committee, and they are identified using the criteria of high academic achievement and outstanding ethical behavior.

Both Jamie and Kenton have demonstrated outstanding academic performance in their years at Wheatley, both having earned perfect grades on their transcripts through the end of their junior year. They have both taken some of the most demanding courses at Wheatley, and they have both been active in Wheatley’s extracurricular life. We are thankful for all they contributed to our school and community over the years.

Congratulations to Jamie and Kenton for this well-deserved recognition!

Wheatley Students Celebrated at the 2019 Academic Awards Evening!

On Thursday evening, hundreds of students, faculty, family members and community members gathered in the auditorium to celebrate our students’ academic, artistic and service achievements.

Students receive invitations to this evening without knowing what recognition they will receive. As such, there is excitement and anticipation in the air throughout the ceremony.

Each academic department presents awards to students who have excelled in classes. Additionally, there are community awards and some school-wide recognitions given. Some of the highlights of the evening occurred at the end, with the following recognitions:

PTO Teacher of the Year

This award is voted on by parents and given by our PTO. This year’s winner was Mr. DJ Paulson.

Susan Bergtraum Leadership in Action Award

This award is given in recognition of the senior who best illustrates the breadth and depth of leadership demonstrated by our former parent, Board Trustee and past president of the New York State School Boards Association. The recipient of this award was Sofia Greenfield.

The Jim O’Brien Award

Named after a retired faculty member, this award is given to a junior who exudes honesty, integrity and a deep devotion to helping others. This year’s recipient was Emily Gothelf.

PTO Recognition Award

This award is given by the PTO in recognition of a senior boy and girl who exemplify qualities such as kindness, good judgment, sincerity, dignity, good citizenship and dependability. This year’s recipients were Charlotte Goldbaum and John Scudero.

The Wheatley Medals

These medals are given to the senior boy and girl who have exemplified the highest standards of scholarship, ethical conduct and service to the community. This year’s recipients were Karan Amin and Cecilia Jozef.

You can view the entire program through this link: 2019 Academic Awards Night Full Program May19

Academic Awards Cover 2019

[Thanks to Dr. Eckers for some of the photos!]

Athletics Signing Day at Wheatley!

Last month, friends and family gathered together to recognize and celebrate the Wheatley student-athletes who have committed to pursuing athletics in college. Mr. Scaturro provided a write-up of these remarkable members of the Class of 2019.

Karan Amin

Karan has been playing tennis since the age of six. This was a year-round commitment to training, playing first at the regional and eastern section levels.  Karan qualified and played his first national tournament when he was twelve and has been continuing to grow his game every year. Karan represented the Eastern Section Team both in the 14s and 16s junior boys’ divisions at the National Zone Team Championships. In his junior year, Karan was ranked inside the top 150 in the country and top 10 in New York State. Currently, he is playing first singles for Wheatley, and he looks forward to playing for Williams College next year! This past weekend, Karan played in the Nassau County singles championship. Although he came up short in this finals match, he qualified for the State Competition.

Tiffany Bernot

Tiffany Bernot began playing Varsity Soccer for The Wheatley Wildcats as a starter in 8th grade and made an immediate impact. She has always been a complete player. Very motivated, a hard worker, enthusiastic, always helping her teammates, and performing at the highest level, culminating in her being named Captain as a Junior. She was a major contributor to our 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 Conference and Nassau County Championship Girls Soccer Teams and even led our Wildcats into State Semifinals in 2016. She has been awarded All-Class, All-Conference, All-County, and Playoff MVP honors throughout her High School career. Tiffany was voted a Newsday Top 50 High School Player To Watch, MSG Varsity Playoff Player of the Game, and Verizon Fios Playoff MVP of The County Championships. Tiffany is looking forward to attending SUNY Albany to play Division 1 Women’s Soccer next fall.

Samantha Rothstein

Samantha has played Varsity lacrosse for 4 years at Wheatley and has been captain since 11th grade. This year, Samantha was recognized as a News 12 Scholar-Athlete and was listed in the top 100 lacrosse players on Long Island to watch. In 2018, she was Long Island’s top scorer with 94 goals 16 assists and was recognized as an Honorable Mention Academic All-American. Additionally, Samantha broke the school record for the most goals scored in one game by an individual player. In 2017, she was named Newsday’s Athlete of the Week.  Samantha also captained the Varsity Soccer team in 2018, which won the Long Island Championship and competed in the NYSPHSAA Girls Soccer Final Four. She was named All-County and All-State this past for her efforts in soccer. She loves being a part of the team here at The Wheatley School and is very excited to continue her lacrosse and educational career at Tufts University in the fall. Recently, Samantha was celebrated for scoring her 250th career goal in lacrosse!

Sydney Silverman

Sydney was a three-year starting goalkeeper at The Wheatley School who earned All-County and All-State honors as a sophomore.  She helped the Wildcats to three Nassau County Championships and a Long Island Championship. She was a part of the 2016 NYSPHSAA Girls Soccer Final Four team in 2016.  She was honored as the Albertson Soccer Young Goalkeeper of the Year in 2014 and Junior Goalkeeper of the Year in 2015. Sydney was then awarded the ECNL Goalkeeper of the Year in 2016 before claiming the Senior Goalkeeper of the Year in 2017.  Sydney is looking forward to attending UNC Wilmington next fall to play Division 1 Women’s Soccer.

Nick Tagios

Nick has been a four-year starter on the Varsity Boys Soccer team here at The Wheatley School.  He was named All-County and All-State in 2016, 2017 and 2018. Nick was named the Conference Player of the Year in both 2017 and 2018 while being the team captain in those years as well.  He was a participant in the 2018 Exceptional Senior All-Star Game at Manhasset High School. Nick will be attending Long Island University at CW Post next fall to play Division 1 Men’s Soccer.



Class of 2019 Celebrates College #DecisionDay

Across the country, May 1st is recognized as College Decision Day. This is the day by which seniors must typically commit to their college of choice. At Wheatley, students filled the hallways with their new school colors, celebrating an important landmark in their many years of hard work and commitment. Throughout the day, @WheatleySchool shared pictures of the seniors, tagging the selected colleges as part of the Tweet.

Here are some of the images from the day!

At Our Parent-Student Evening Forum, LICADD Helps Educate and Inform about the Dangers of Vaping

The use of electronic cigarettes among teenagers has reached epidemic levels. The dangers posed by these devices are known by researchers but not by many parents or students. You can learn more about the problem through the following articles:

Along with every high school in the United States, Wheatley has worked to educate parents, students and faculty of the dangers posed by electronic devices. In light of these concerns (and after the closure of the 200-corridor bathrooms for just over a week), we held a Parent-Student Forum on Tuesday evening in order to share our concerns about electronic cigarette use, inform parents about the dangers of such heavy doses of nicotine (and, potentially, THC) at such young ages and discuss strategies to move forward as a community in order to keep our children safe and healthy.

To help us with this conversation, we had the support of our friends at LICADD (Long Island Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence) were at the meeting. Steve Chassman, the Executive Director of LICADD, spoke with authority and passion about the nature of addiction, the dangers posed by nicotine abuse at such young ages and the ease at which students can transition from vaping nicotine to vaping marijuana. We also discussed strategies Wheatley would incorporate, including more student education about the dangers and the availability of treatment, more parental education and more faculty education.

Overall, it was a wonderfully productive meeting that will help us move forward in a positive, collaborative manner. Thank you to those parents and students who were in attendance!

You can view Steve Chassman’s presentation here: LICADD Wheatley School 2019

LICADD Wheatley School 2019

Wheatley’s Career Fair Provides Students with Insights to Life Beyond Wheatley!

On Friday, 25 January, Wheatley held its annual Career Fair in order to expose our students to some of the possible careers available to them outside of Wheatley and college. With the support of our community, twenty different professionals spent time at Wheatley sharing information about their careers, their backgrounds and the interests that led them to pursue their current career.

The Career Fair presenters were assigned an individual classroom for their presentations. All 11th and 12th graders were asked to select two different presenters to visit during the fair. Students were later asked to write a reflection on their career fair choices and the presentations.

The increased exposure to more career opportunities has been an ongoing district goal. A huge “Thank You” to the presenters. Thank you especially to Natalia McMillan for her work organizing the event!

This year’s Career Fair Presenters included:

  1. Danielle Gruttadaurio – Forensic artist
  2. Ruth Kohlmeier – Medical examiner (Suffolk County)
  3. Drew Hambly – Finance (Morgan Stanley)
  4. Jacqueline Tobin – Magazine Editor-in-chief
  5. Jerry Kelly – Director of Business Development (medical)
  6. Michael Stein – English teacher (Herricks)
  7. Brad Behar – Intellectual patent attorney/civil engineer
  8. Rick Wilson – Theatre director, actor, musician and educator (Wheatley teacher)
  9. Joshua Gluck – FDNY paramedic
  10. Dr. Justine Golden – Psychologist
  11. Sean Christensen – Retired US Marine Captain/Program Director (non-profit org.)
  12. Samantha Holze – Director of Marketing and Ecommerce
  13. James LoBello – Director of Security of The Americas Lufthansa Cargo (Homeland Security)
  14. Corey Moran – FDNY firefighter
  15. Daniel Krittman – Computer science (artificial intelligence)
  16. Amanda K. Dhennin, (MLS) ASCP – Medical laboratory scientist
  17. Josh Kotin – Account Executive, NYC Football Club (Wheatley Graduate)
  18. Marissa Lando – Broadcast producer (Wheatley Graduate)
  19. Michal LaCasse – Physical therapist
  20. Petty Officer Maloney – U.S. Naval Officer