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The Class Of 2013—New Awards

In a previous edition of this newspaper, students at Great Neck North and South High Schools were recognized for the traditional top awards—valedictorian, salutatorian, Barstow and Scott Moss. Recognition is also given to students who received new awards. 


There were two, first-time awards presented this year, both at South High School—the Harriet Miller Girls’ Empowerment Scholarship and the Jeff Sanders Memorial Award for Social Justice. 


Harriet Miller Girls’ Empowerment Scholarship

Senia Romero is the recipient of the Harriet Miller Girls’ Empowerment Scholarship.


This award was established by the South Middle School staff in memory of Harriet Miller, a beloved guidance counselor at the school. Ms. Miller possessed a deep commitment to assisting at-risk girls and developed the “Girls’ Empowerment Group” at South Middle. The scholarship honors and continues Ms. Miller’s passion for providing positive alternatives and opportunities for teen girls.


The scholarship is to be given to a South High graduating senior female student “who has demonstrated perseverance and tenacity despite socioeconomic and other environmental factors, in pursing her education.”


Senia plans to attend CUNY-Queensborough Community College in the fall.


Jeff Sanders Memorial Award for Social Justice


Houng Woo (Chris) Choi is the recipient of the Jeff Sanders Memorial Award for Social Justice. 


This award was established by the Sanders family in memory of Jeff Sanders, a graduate of South High School who was among the first students to serve as student delegates to the Board of Education. Jeff’s “passion in life was the advocacy of First Amendment Rights and promoting social justice.”


The award is given to a South High graduating senior “who has had to overcome personal adversity; such as economics, language, the ability to learn, and who, like Jeff, embodies the causes of social justice in our society.”

Chris was a first place winner in the New York State Wildlife Forever 25th Anniversary State Art Contest, a Silver Key winner for Drawing in the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards Competition and a recipient of a Nassau All-County Art Exhibition Achievement Award. He was captain of the varsity volleyball team, president of the Christian Seekers Club and an active member of the Asian Club (and teacher of the Club’s Korean Band), and the Contemporary Music Club. Chris has been very active in summer community outreach projects organized by the Yale Korean Presbyterian Church of New York. He will attend CUNY-Baruch College.


The recent adoption the Common Core Learning Standards, a rigorous series of teacher and student assessment testing, and the potential sharing of confidential student information with third parties have resulted in a radical change in the educational landscape in New York State—one that many parents have been concerned about.

To address these growing concerns, the Great Neck School District’s United Parent Teacher Council recently hosted a question and answer session at South High School with New York State Regent Roger Tilles, a Great Neck resident who has been outspoken with both his support of content the Common Core and his disapproval in how the new set of learning standards have been implemented.

At a meeting last week, after almost four hours of back and forth between Clover Drive residents, the attorney representing builder Frank Lalazarian’s controversial Old Mill II project and members of the Village of Great Neck’s Planning Board, there was very little progress, no vote taken and far more questions than answers.

The subdivision plan, a project under discussion for the last five years and recently approved by the village’s Zoning Board of Appeals, calls for 11 houses to be built in the area behind the Old Mill Apartments, with sole access from Clover Drive. Complicating the builder’s efforts to gain approval to start building is the fact that one of the lots is within the boundaries of Great Neck Estates and will require that village’s approval also.  Additionally, Lalazarian’s project must gain the approval of several Nassau County agencies, including its department of public works, department of health and planning commission.


The Bears team before a recent game at the Andrew Stergiopoulos Ice Rink with Coach Dan Marsella.

Great Neck’s Ayal Hod is the proud coach of Great Neck’s winning Top Gun sixth grade team in the Island Garden Fall League. Hod puts together the team every season, mixing local youngsters from Great Neck and children son Dillon’s AAU Jamaica Queens team. The league is very competitive and challenging and it teaches the children many valuable lessons: “how to be great teammates by sharing the ball, how to compete hard on every possession and what you put in is what you get out.”

Hod says that the main challenge is for every child to bring their individual talent to the team and collectively they have something special. an ex-player, he says that “basketball was very good to me, it helped pay my college education and it  paid my-bills for many years to come via several basketball commercials ... basketball also opened many doors for me and it helped me tremendously in my business career.”

Hod enjoys sharing his basketball journey background with his son and his friends and having them learn lessons too.


Park District Swim

Saturday, Dec. 7

Board of Education Meeting

Monday, Dec. 9

Peter Max Exhibit Presentation

Tuesday, December 10


1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller,

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry,

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller,