Department Highlights and Announcements

  • Nassau County Executive Laura Curran Invites Rachel Lyons to Recite Poem During Ceremony

    Posted by Georgia Amigdalos on 5/28/2021

    Baldwin High School Student Performs Slam Poem at Nassau County Youth Council Contest



    Slam Poem 

    One of the goals this year in AP Seminar was to incorporate breaks in the curriculum to give students opportunities to write and read more literature. After listening to the poem, "The Hill We Climb," by Amanda Gorman, Mr. Soupios provided students the opportunity to create a spoken word perspective poem. In this poem, the students were required to create a stakeholder and write a poem from their perspective.

    Rachel Lyons submitted her poem to the Nassau County Youth Council Contest. She subsequently received a response stating, “Given that you submitted such a unique art form, that you be invited to recite your poem at the Art Contest Ceremony with Nassau County Executive Laura Curran.” 

     Rachel we hope you keep writing and speaking your truth!




    there are things the mind

    refuses to acknowledge

    until a certain point in time

    when everything is so clear

    too clear, even, that our eyes gloss over

    and our ears don’t hear

    the ringing of cries

    the pitter-patter of tears

    the elementary school playground

    so significant in the minds

    of children producing screams

    as they run after each other

    until they pause

    but only to catch their breath

    maybe fix their little shoelaces

    before taking off once more

    off to the side

    two girls sit

    on a simple wooden bench

    one holds a secret

    while the other speaks

    words flowing in one ear

    only to fly out the other

    what is a secret to a child?

    at first, secrets are exciting

    they grant a sense of importance

    of value, of mystery

    but as the clock ticks, they grow

    they morph and they twist

    they develop and they crush

    and at some point in time,

    it becomes easier for her

    to simply suppress and to make herself forget

    we stumble upon

    the concept of a subconscious secret

    one that claws at the inside of your skull

    pleading to be let out

    begging for even momentary acknowledgment

    time and time again,

    countless courtesy clashes are fought

    within a girl who wants nothing more

    than to forget and never again hear

    the stifled murmurs

    of her subconscious struggles

    but, she can’t win

    as she grows older, our little friend never ceases

    to continuously evolve

    we get to a place

    where to ignore is something much more attainable

    than to forget

    time goes on and she tries so, so hard

    to do just that, ignore

    but if she failed in doing so the first time,

    what in the world made her believe

    that this goes around, things would end differently

    better, even

    simply put, she was wrong

    she allows this secret to boil over

    a tea kettle of fear, of anger, of confusion

    letting out a queen of the night scream

    ultimately suffocated by the resounding silence

    of stifled sorrows

    she’s had enough

    forgetting had shifted to ignoring

    and gradually, ignoring must resolve to embracing

    the battles brought on by

    years of a refusal to cooperate

    slowly simmer silent

    they no longer have to be waged

    wedged into our growing girl’s conscious

    still, she will have to fight

    her whole life

    maybe not with herself,

    because from that war, she has already emerged victorious

    but with the world, she has been born into

    battles over the concept of love,

    somehow a controversial idea

    on this twisted planet

    and she mourns

    the countless children who will have to learn

    that something so inherently beautiful and natural

    is hated

    and the harsh reality of human life on our planet earth

    is that nothing is fair

    and there is nothing our precious girl can do

    to fix the horrors that will haunt the rest of her life

    all she can do right now is swing her little legs

    on that wooden playground bench

    unknowingly preparing herself

    for a life of constant push and shove

    of never-ending trials of power

    she will always be powerless

    in our power-hungry world


    - Rachel Lyons


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  • Baldwin High School Students Named Winners in Walt Whitman Birthplace Association Poetry Contest

    Posted by Georgia Amigdalos on 5/6/2021


    Baldwin High School Students Named Winners in Walt Whitman Birthplace Association Poetry Contest


    Two Baldwin High School students, Angelo Guerrero and Sonia Singh recently received “Honorable Mention” in the Walt Whitman Birthplace Association - 35th Annual Student Poetry Contest.

    The WWBA celebrates the creative efforts put forth by students and their teachers. Angelo, a sophomore, in Ms. McManus's class was recognized for his poem, “Breeze of Air” in Category D–Grades 9 & 10, while Sonia, a junior, in Ms. Hughes's class won for Category E—Grades 11 and 12 for her poem "Astral."

    Both students will be honored during a virtual awards ceremony in June.

    #BaldwinStudentsRock #WhatsBruinBaldwin  #WeAreBaldwin  #BaldwinHS

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  • Ms. Taormina Receives the PTSA Honorary Life Award

    Posted by Georgia Amigdalos on 3/2/2021


     Ms. Taormina


    Our AP Literature and Composition teacher, Ann Marie Taormina received the PTSA Honorary Life Award last night! Ms. Taormina has taught at Baldwin High School for the last 19 years and is the consummate professional who deserves and receives every modicum of respect she has earned throughout her tenure at Baldwin.  From AP Literature and Composition to sophomore English classes, AnneMarie is the epitome of what a teacher should be: knowledgeable, caring, kind, invested, and a life long learner.

    Her eloquence inside and outside of the classroom and her enthusiasm and desire to be the best teacher she can be makes each of us want to be better educators ourselves.  On a personal note, when my son started college this year, he ran into a boy wearing a Baldwin shirt. When my son told the boy that I work at Baldwin as the ELA Chairperson, he immediately said:  Tell your mom to say hi to Mrs. Taormina.  She was my favorite teacher!  Not only do Anne Marie’s current and former students adore her, but she has gained quite a fan base amongst the parents of her pupils, her colleagues, and basically, everyone she’s touched along the way.

    And touched she has . . . AnneMarie has made considerable contributions to our Baldwin High School family over the years.  She is the co - advisor of Baldwin's Golden Wave student publication. Her supervision of the newsletter has helped give Baldwin students a newfound voice in the school and in the community. Each spring, Anne Marie always takes time to review speeches from students who are poised to deliver some words at senior graduation. She also coaches these kids and gently instills the confidence and support they need to speak in front of a large audience.  Most importantly, AnneMarie makes each of her students feel special and passionately pours her heart and soul into teaching English so they become  “students of literature.” In fact, her students appreciate AnnMarie so much that they gave her a standing ovation at the awards ceremony a couple of years ago. Each of us leaves every conversation with AnneMarie feeling like we’ve learned something new. Simply put, she goes above and beyond as an educator, as a person, as a friend, and as a colleague.

    As James Joyce once said, "I am tomorrow, or some future day, what I establish today. I am today what I established yesterday or some previous day."

    As the 2021 recipient of Baldwin’s Lifetime Achievement Award, AnneMarie Taormina’s accomplishments span countless yesterdays, todays, and, I’m certain, many more tomorrows and future days. I am both honored and privileged to congratulate AnneMarie and wish her continued success, good health, and happiness on behalf of the entire Baldwin High School faculty, administrators, students, and staff. It is truly a privilege to work with you and know the impact you have had on countless students and your colleagues here at Baldwin!  Congratulations, Ann Marie!

    -- Georgia Amigdalos

    ELA Supervisor

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  • Our ELA Teachers Featured in Long Island Herald - SBU News Literacy

    Posted by Georgia Amigdalos on 1/8/2021

    Our ELA Teachers Featured in Long Island Herald - Stony Brook University News Literacy Grant 


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    This summer, the Baldwin School District received a grant from Stony Brook University to support our newly implemented News Literacy program at the high school and middle school. News Literacy has served as an integral tool in our learners’ toolbox that has enabled students to differentiate between real news and misinformation.

    Mr. Mike Morrow and Ms. Meredith Foraker shared their experiences teaching News Literacy with the LI Herald. Michael stated, "My big takeaways from it was how important it is that we teach these news literacy skills in the modern world.” He also added, “Everyone is getting so much information all day, every day, and it’s important to be able to weed through that information and be able to discern fact from opinion, know what’s verifiable, fake news.”  Ms. Foraker went on to say, students "really need to be able to dissect the information that’s put out there and differentiate between what is real news and what is fake news.”  Eighth grade students also spoke about the importance of being taught these skills. I feel like all kids should learn how to identify fake news,” said Baldwin Middle School student Jasmine Madera Morel. “It could help them in the future, so they don’t go believing everything they hear on social media or on the news.” She said she applies the lessons and tools she’s learned all the time when using the internet, social media, or consuming news.

    Once again our students and ELA teachers making us proud!


    To read the full article click on the following link: Baldwin School District Earns News Literacy Grant

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  • Cornelius Minor Visits Baldwin

    Posted by Georgia Amigdalos on 10/28/2020

    Cornelius Minor Visits Baldwin!

    "What leads us to equity?"


    On October 28th, 2020, Brooklyn based game changer, inspiring agents of change, grading equity advocate, author of We Got This, a book that explores how the work of creating more equitable school spaces is embedded in our everyday choices - specifically in the choice to really listen to kids visited (virtually) Baldwin. Cornelius facilitated the PD and led powerful conversations about established biases, pedagogy in today's landscape and creating experiences that embody our values of "every" child.   


    Some takeaways:

    • "Abandon yesterday's thinking, if it doesn't serve today's needs."
    • "Skills can transfer.  Content can be Googled."
    • "Change is participatory."


    Thank you Cornelius and to all the ELA teachers for being open minded, reflective and willing to pivot to ensure every student is given the opportunity to be successful.


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  • Baldwin Illuminated

    Posted by Georgia Amigdalos on 10/2/2020

    Baldwin Illuminated 2020

    From France to Napa Valley and Now—Baldwin Union Free School District! Baldwin High School students in grades 9-12 had their art and literature projected onto building exteriors around the high school campus. Based on the themes of Innovation and The Future, the free light show, also known as “projection mapping,” was among the first of its kind to take place at a school and was open to the community.

    Our English Language Arts students from Digital Storytelling and New Media courses created powerful Six Word Memoirs and others explored their heritage in multimedia displays of writing mission statements and Where I am From poems. A big thank you to our amazing teachers: Ms. McManus, Mr. Ryley and Mr. Morrow for guiding students to produce such moving work.






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  • Book Talk with Professor Graham - Columbia University

    Posted by Georgia Amigdalos on 6/11/2020 9:00:00 AM


       On Thurday, June 11th at 9am Mr. Buckley conducted a "book talk" with Austin Graham, professor of comparative literature at Columbia University.  Professor Graham is the author of a book entitled, The Great American Songbooks about the use of music in modern literature which includes an extensive section about the use of music in F. Scott Fitzgerald's works.  He has contributed to numerous publications on the topic of The Great Gatsby.

         Mr. Buckley thought outside the box and during a challenging time brought excitement to his class by arranging an opportunity that he believed his students would greatly benefit from via Zoom. 

         Mr. Buckley's class participated in a scholarly discussion on the novel we all know and love - The Great Gatsby

    Click the link to see how amazing our students are: Book Talk with Professor Graham - Columbia University




                     B B1 B3 B5 B4


    Thank you Professor Graham, Mr. Buckley and students!!! 

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  • Walt Whitman Birthplace Association THIRTY-FOURTH ANNUAL STUDENT POETRY CONTEST 2020

    Posted by Georgia Amigdalos on 5/1/2020

    Congrats to Dylan Pigott!!




    I am delighted to announce that Dylan Pigott in Ms. Hughes's AP Language and Composition class won the Walt Whitman Birthplace Association THIRTY-FOURTH ANNUAL STUDENT POETRY CONTEST 2020 for his category - 11th grade individual Poetry Anthology.  We are so proud!

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  • Mr. Ryley Makes the Cut

    Posted by Georgia Amigdalos on 3/23/2020

    Mr. Ryley Makes the Cut


    Early last year, Mr. Ryley was asked by one of his colleagues at Molloy College, Dr. Schiering, to submit a narrative for her book on differentiated learning. The book was published late last year and is titled Achieving Differentiated Learning: Using the Interactive Method Workbook. The workbook is designed to work in conjunction with another one of her books, Different Needs, Different Abilities: The Interactive Method for Teaching and Learning.  Both books are published through Rowman and Littlefield. 

    Towards the end of the last school year, Dr. Schiering asked Mr. Ryley to submit a chapter for another book she was working on about preventing school violence. She finished the book the end of 2019 and it was recently published through Rowman and Littlefield. The title of the book is Preventing School Violence: Guidelines for Teaching Civility. Mr. Ryley's chapter is title "Kindness Matters."   Great news for a great teacher!

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  • Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration

    Posted by Georgia Amigdalos on 1/17/2020

    Baldwin UFSD, in collaboration with Concerned Parents of Baldwin, held the annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration at Baldwin High School.  The theme for this year's event was "We Are the Children of the Dream."  A highlight from the evening included the Humanitarian award that was presented to two of our ELA students for the essay they entered and their commendable achievements and accomplishments.


    Left to Right: (Ms. Monifade Aderemi - Grade 11/Ms. Hughes' class and Ms. Reyna Palmer - Grade 8/Mr. Morrow's class)

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