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South High Graduation Speech

I can’t help but to stand here and grin

Simply because this is where we begin

I want to express to you 

How much we’ve been blessed to

Have had the opportunity 

to thrive in this community

It’s inevitable that every rebel

Is given a special home 

To prone their flair 

Their personal share

Of facing the world

So willing to dare


You gave me the power to achieve 

Along with the hope 

To help me believe 

In myself I am me

I am Benjamin Z

I’ve learned that I’ve earned that 

Ability here

The confident passion to live without fear

Of being critiqued for being unique

or being called weak for trying to seek

what I truly desire in life’s empire

even when the reach is a little bit higher


The world’s an adventure course 

So ready for the climb

Sometime it’s uphill struggle

Before it’s a zipline


The school is so cool it has helped us prepare

To reach for that rope that will get us there

You don’t know how lucky we are

To be given the chance to reach for a star

I know not of another school

That provides this dedication

To helping us find our salvation

Helping create a good foundation


We share the actuality

That this is a reality

It’s a commonality to feel a scare

When transitioning from here to there

Expecting to feel like a prickly pear

But it might as well be a teddy bear

Because look at yourself you are at graduation

You didn’t do that while on a vacation

You made it thus far 

You’re a capable one

My confidence in you is a megaton 


Whether you are going to college 

or going abroad

or holding a shield on a battlefield

Remember that changes in location or education does not need to mean a change in relation


This is the beginning NOT the end

And I hope you will remain my friend


Which is Navajo for “You are dear to me”


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


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The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
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Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
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