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Michele Dodenhoff, Top Teacher

KJOY commends Hicksville educator as best on Long Island

For all the hard work teachers do, finding a shiny apple on your desk sometimes just isn’t enough.

Michele Dodenhoff, a member of the Hicksville Congress of Teachers and a first-grade teacher at Dutch Lane School, was nominated as a candidate for KJOY radio’s “Teacher of the Month.”

Residents all across Long Island contacted the radio station to nominate outstanding teachers who have made a difference in their lives or the lives of their children. After six finalists were selected, voting for the winner took place during the month of December. Voting was open to all Long Islanders, and networks of school communities reached out to encourage others to vote for their favorite teacher. 

On Jan. 8, the Dutch Lane teacher was notified that she won the contest.

“I was so deeply touched by the outpouring of support that I received from the Hicksville community,” said Dodenhoff.

She was awarded a $500 prize, which she is using to supplement her classroom library, purchase “common core” instructional materials to help her 31 first-graders meet the new rigorous standards and attend a conference in order to stay on top of the of the newest innovations to help children achieve success.

Dodenhoff, who has worked in the district since 1997, first started out as a resource room teacher and then went on to teach first, second and fourth grades.  She lives in Islip Terrace with her husband Charlie and their three daughters, Shannon, Chelsea and Cassie (and their two Labradors). Parents, former students, and colleagues all helped spread the word about Dodenhoff – how much she cares about all of her students and how committed she is to providing students with warm and stimulating school environment.

“It’s so rewarding to be a part of Hicksville. Dutch Lane’s children, parents, and staff are like a second family to me and I couldn’t think of a better place to enjoy my career,” she said. 

News

A group of like-minded local residents banded together and saved more than 200 area trees from the chopping block — for now.

A state judge ordered Nassau County and the Department of Public Works to stop cutting down trees along South Oyster Bay Road, granting a temporary restraining order to a group of residents spearheading an effort to save the trees.

State Supreme Court Judge Antonio Brandveen scheduled a hearing on Thursday, Oct. 16 for the county to address complaints from residents, in particular a group called Operation STOMP (Save Trees Over More Pavement) founded by Hicksville native Tanya Lukasik.The Public Works department had planned to removed more than 200 30-foot trees in communities ranging from Plainview, Bethpage, Hicksville and Syosset.

For the past 16 years, Lucia Simon has walked from her home in Hicksville to her job at the Hicksville Public Library. She enjoys her job as a librarian and says that the staff has become like family to her. But for the past three years, Simon and 56 fellow co-workers have been frustrated at what she says is the library’s board refusal to negotiate a fair contract.  

“We have had no contract in three years. They refuse to bargain with us. Every time they come back to us it’s not fair,” says Simon.

However, the board of trustees disagree, saying that it has made a “fair offer.”


Sports

The Girls Varsity soccer team, in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, wore pink uniforms and pink socks in their game on Oct. 8 against MacArthur whom they defeated 1-0. The girls and boys soccer programs at Hicksville High School are selling pink ribbon car magnets with a soccer ball and HHS on it with the words “Kick Cancer” on the ribbon. All the money raised will go to the Sarah Grace Foundation, which is a local foundation trying to beat pediatric cancer. The players plan to raise $1,000 for this organization

— From Hicksville High School

Hicksville native progressing through Mets system

The Mets minor league system is enjoying a rare period of prosperity. For years, it was barren due to trading off high-ceiling players for major leaguers, or neglecting the draft in favor of the free agent market. Since General Manager Sandy Alderson took over, the organization has reversed course and put a much greater emphasis on player development. During his second-to-last season, however, former GM Omar Minaya took a chance and drafted a local catcher, Cam Maron, out of Hicksville High School in the 34th round.


Calendar

Board of Education Meeting

October 22

Oktoberfest

October 25-26

Pancake Breakfast

October 26



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com