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Phoenix, NY 13135
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News and Articles for Phoenix Central School District.

EJD Middle School Students Receive Academic Honors

Several Emerson J. Dillon Middle School students have earned gold or silver stars for their academic achievements throughout the second marking period.

Students are awarded a gold star for achieving a quarterly report card average of 90 or higher. A silver star is earned for a quarterly average of 85 to 89.99. All honorees received a certificate of achievement and will be invited to participate in a special activity as a reward for their hard work.

Fifth-grade gold star recipients include: Kathryn AuClair, Chase Bacon, Isaiah Bergman, Allenmichael Borasky, Grayson Brady, Elisabeth Caltabiano, Courtney Carter, Emily Dunn-Hulett, Hayley Dygert, Michael Farrar, Madison Fatcheric, Evan Fox, Lindsey Goudy, Mia Graham, Kenidee Grover, Mallory Hess, Blake Hoyt, Mattie Hunt, Evan Isabell, Olivia Isabella, Alexis Izyk-Treece, Alan Jacques, Conor Jones, Chase Kenner-Carbonaro, Morgan Lynch, Brooke McCann, John McDonald, Peyton Nichols, Tateum Patnode, Jamie Pergrem, Cody Perry, Logan Petrie, Lillianne Quinn, Hannah Reilley, Sheriden Southworth, Zoey Stone, Ryan Thompson, Alexander Whaley and Austin Wilder.

Fifth-grade silver star recipients include: Aiyannah Bukowski, Donnivan Bukowski, Liam Campanino, Solomon Campbell, Victoria Cerullo, Meghan Clothier, Reghan Conley, Dominic Croteau, Blake Duncan, Milani Eldred, Mark Eusepi Jr., Robert Finch Jr., Damian Fratello, Shawn Froio, Zoe Gordon, Jason Hilton, Riley Huntley, Brandon Ingoldby, Dylan Jones, Mikayla Maxam, Jenna Moore, Edward Pitcher, Sahara Sardo, Lillie Shaffer, Adrianna Sullivan, Celia Tangorra and Julianna Williams.

Gold star awards were given to the following sixth-graders: Sarah Andrews, Sarah Ashby, Noah Bartholomew, Virginia Bednarski, Zackery Bennett, Mathew Bernard, Alissa Bova, Adrianna Breckheimer, Matthew Breton, Gracie Britton, Conner Calkins, Chloe Coughlin, Isaiah Gordon, James Hagg II, Jonah Hawthorne, Bethany Hook, Alexandra Hopps, Alaina Hubbell, Jayde Jacobson, Autumn Kelly, Grace Landis, Caitlyn Lando, Nevaeh Lando, Larissa MacDonald, Hannah McArthur, Grace McDonald, Erick Moreira, Jacob Neupert, Gabriella Payne, Katelyn Pyzdrowski, Kelsey Redhead, Ariana Richway, Kylie Russo, Taylor Smith, and Daniel Stellingwerf.

Silver star awards were given to the following sixth-graders: Landon Armstrong, Stephen Beal, Masson Bell, Ian Burgett, Brendan Champion, Jake Charleston, Jared Charleston, Kaitlyn Chesbro, Mary Crandall, Breannah Demo, Johnathan Dion, Matthew Files, Dominic Germain, Brian Gibbs, Joseph Green, Madisen Guerrero, Nicholas Hanson, Tye Hughes, Willyam Jolly, Karson Kimball, Maggie LaPine, Dominick Mason, Cody McFall, Max Morgan, Brady Munger, Weston Murphy, McKenna Neiss, Carson Newvine, Carter Norton, Carter Pinkley,  Curtis Pitcher, Hanadi Sardo, Nicholas Sisera, Jacob Smallman, Olivia Snyder, Brooke-Lynne Springer, Sean Stevens, Gaven Sutter, Ella Tangorra, Chastity Thomas and Austin Wagar.

Seventh-grade gold star awardees are: Isabella Allen, Shay Altman, Amaya Baker, Nicholas Bartlett, Haley Bowersox, Sara Brunell, Chloe Calkins, Cameron Cerul, Hannah Charleston, Emma Clark, Tabitha Clark, Sophia Crandall, Brielle DeRoberts, Alicia Durst, Francesca Goodell, Noah Gordon, Cierra Harvey, Alivia Lamphere, Miranda LaRobardiere, Jock Li, Megan Lytle, Owen Lytle, Zack Mills, Robert Minard, Garret Morrissiey, Andrew Quinn, Tyler Redhead, Connor Roberts, Lily Roberts, William Semanchuk-Enser, Aiden Southworth, Isabella Stacy, Nathaniel Sutter, Liam Sweeney, Zoie Tracy, Melody Trask, Sophia Trinca, Aidan Trumble, Thomas Uhl, Michael VanAuken Jr. and Mason Watkins.

Seventh-grade silver star awardees are: Emily Babbitt, Ashleigh Besaw, Natalie Brown, Kelsie Burgess, Kaelyn Cartwright, Alexander Coons, Hailie Dailey, Ethan Fox, Hailey Fredericks, Mattison Hess, Amanda Justian, Nathan Kosakowski, Patricia Lamach, Samantha McLoughlin, Alex Olschewske, Imari Piscitelli, Holt Reed, Keaton Renfrew, Brett Sears. Jacob Smith, Benjamin Thibault, Corinne Thibault and Ashlyn Wallace.

Gold stars honors went to these eighth-graders: Violet Ameele, Grace Arnold, Jadan Bruno, Danielle Case, Cheyenne Cook, Jeffrey Cooper, Michael Dion, Elisabeth Dona, Darren Fischel, Camron Fordyce, Caitlin George, Hailey Goudy, Allison Grabowski, Adam Hahn, Samantha Harrison, Keera Hazen, Brianna Horn, Carly Ingerson, Ann Joseph, Madison Kalt, Katelyn Kenner-Carbonaro, Jena Klimaszewski, Lauren Kraft, Brigid Lawless, Julianna Lewis, Tina Li, Chloe Lytle, Alexandria Mills, Caitlyn Mitchell, Joseph Murphy, Savannah Neupert, Keva Newby, Skyler Patnode, Taylor Petrie, Ethan Remington, Aubrianna Renfrew, Leah Schlachter, Ayden Slack, Jacob St. Laurent, Tamika Stobart, Sarah Thorn, Nicole Tulowiecki, Teresa Uhl, Madison VanAuken and Grace Vestigo.

Silver star honors went to these eighth-graders: Emma Allers, Riley Belknap, Olivia Bigelow, Mason Bresett, Alexis Capenos, Julia Francisco, Leah Green, Samuel Guthrie, Cassadee Handville, Paige Isabell, Laila Jones, Hailey Liscomb, Bradyn Lough, Joshua Lovins, Matthew Maestri, Amaya Malambri, Christian McKay, Abigail Meaker, Kelise Newby, Brooke Palmer, Madison Pelton, Love Phillips, Vanessa Rivera, Nicholas Vaverchak, Carissa Watkins, Madison Watkins, Seth Watkins and Paige Weldin.

PCSD Students Performed in NYSSMA Winter Conference

The tradition of Phoenix Central School District musical excellence continues with two John C. Birdlebough High School juniors’ participation in the New York State School Music Association’s 2015 Winter Conference at the Rochester Convention Center in December.

Zachary Thompson sang first tenor in the All-State Mixed Chorus and Brian Breen played percussion in the All-State Wind Ensemble. Both students performed alongside the best high school musicians throughout the state.

Preparation for the event included student selection and performance of an All-State solo at the NYSSMA solo festival in the spring. Those solos were evaluated and scored, and scores were sent to an All-State ensemble selection committee. Students were notified of their selection over the summer and were sent a packet of music to prepare for the winter conference. The repertoire for these concerts is at a correspondingly high level of difficulty, and the students spent several hours working and preparing prior to the conference.

The winter conference began Dec. 3 with a three-day marathon of rehearsals in preparation for their concert. Students stayed in the hotel at the Convention Center with other top high school musicians and were afforded opportunities to attend social gatherings.

Thompson said his experience of singing in a chorus of over 250 top-notch singers was life changing and that he would do it again in a heartbeat.



EJD Students Committed to Kindness

Students in Sandy Silky's class at the Emerson J. Dillon Middle School are performing random acts of kindness throughout the 2015-2016 school year. In January, students hosted a breakfast for staff members. In February, the class will provide a sweet surprise to one EJD classroom and teacher for Valentine's Day.

MAM Elementary Students Show Responsibility

Several Michael A. Maroun Elementary School students were recently honored during an assembly in the cafeteria for exhibiting responsibility throughout January. Students who embody the school’s character education traits are recognized each month for their efforts.

The following second-grade students were honored: Brandon Slater, Maddie Di Giovani, Emmy Strop, Madilyn LaRocque, Cadence Hunneyman, Raiden Cummings, Kendal Barnes, Edyn Darling, Ian Bova, Elizabeth Bullis, Thomas Jones, Avery LaRobardiere, Daizie McMahon, Sam Carno, and Kara Chape.

Raiden Cummings also received a responsibility award for art, while Lacey Goodman received a responsibility award for library and George Williams received the same award for showing responsibility in the café.

Michael A. Maroun Elementary students smile after being recognized for showing responsibility
throughout the month of January.



JCB Students Go "Back to the Future" at MAM

Several John C. Birdlebough High School students took a step back in time so they could explore a career that involves working with children by visiting their elementary classrooms.

The high schoolers assisted Michael A. Maroun Elementary teachers with lessons, interacted with students and gained unforgettable hands-on experience as part of the annual “Back to the Future” (BTTF) event. Elementary and High School Guidance Counselor Nora Germain said BTTF often serves as the high schoolers’ first tangible exposure of working with children in a formal setting.

The older students remained actively engaged in the elementary learning environment throughout the day. Alexa Hoag, 10th grader, began her day in Desiree Moore’s third-grade classroom by getting to know students as they finished their breakfast and practiced math skills. Hoag said she enjoys spending time with children and is considering a career in nursing. Down the hallway, repeat BTTF Participant and JCB Senior Tyler Gabriele assisted Second-Grade Teacher Joelle Hendry by using a SMART Board to record student answers to be used for a synopsis for parents of what the class accomplished throughout the week. Gabriele said he too enjoys working with children and he has a passion for computer science.

Both JCB Senior Chris Nicolella and JCB Sophomore Catherine Musumeci said they may consider careers in the field of education. They spent time in Lucille Mercer’s kindergarten class helping students with a number bingo game and rhyming activities.

The BTTF program also gave an opportunity for elementary students to learn about high school.

Other JCB students participating in the “Back to the Future” event included: Bryon Halstead, Josh Margrey, Emma Brown, Lawrence Karl, Jessica Jones, Evan Logee, Lauren Schmidt, Sarah Hoag, Corinne Januska, Brad Dietz, Ashley Margrey, Zoey Heckert and Wendy Li.

Michael A. Maroun Elementary Kindergarteners Emily Petrella, left, and Lana Thompson, right, enjoy
spending time with John C. Birdlebough Sophomore Catherine Musumeci during a number bingo game.
The annual Back to the Future event provided high schoolers first-hand experience working with children.

EJD Middle School NJHS Chapter Takes on Multiple Projects

Emerson J. Dillon Middle School’s National Junior Honor Society chapter members remain committed to becoming leaders throughout their school and community.

So far this school year, the group participated in a fall CROP Walk and raised $270 to help end hunger worldwide, sang carols and made Christmas cards for residents of Elderwood Nursing Home in Liverpool and organized a hat fundraiser day which collected $106 to help purchase stuffed animals from Build - A - Bear Workshop for children who require treatment at Golisano Children's Hospital in Syracuse.

In February, the NJHS will sponsor a Valentine’s Day dance and half of the proceeds will go toward the Phoenix Central School District’s Dollars for Scholars program. A family fun night will also be held in March.

NJHS requirements include maintaining a grade point average over 93 for two years, involvement in community service projects and leadership skills.

Pictured in the front row, from left are: Keva Newby (vice president), Allison Grabowski, Hailey Goudy and Grace Arnold. Kneeling in the middle row, from left are: Violet Ameelee (secretary) and Brigid Lawless (treasurer). In back, from left are: Sarah Thorn (president), Teresa Uhl, Catie George and Gracie Vestigo. Group advisors, not pictured, are Helen Abbott and Jennifer Mainville.

JCB Students to Perform in 2016 OCMEA All County Band

Several John C. Birdlebough High School students participated in the Oswego County Music Educators Association All County Band Festival Jan. 15 and Jan. 16 in the Altmar-Parish-Williamstown Junior-Senior High School auditorium.  All JCB band students were encouraged to audition for this honor in December.

Selected for this year’s ensemble include: Brian Breen – Flute/Piccolo, Mattingly Gleason – Oboe, Emily Roberts – Clarinet, Morgan Bajish – Bass Clarinet, Dixon Ameele – Alto Saxophone, Derick White – French Horn, Zoe Heckert – French Horn, Jacob Nicolini – Trumpet, Daniel Knowlton – Trumpet and Sean Sievers – Trombone.

These JCB students performed the following songs alongside students from throughout Oswego County: “See Rock City” by Brant Karrick, “O Magnum Mysterium” by Morton Lauridsen (arr, Reynolds), “Three Celtic Dances” by Brian Balmages, and “National Emblem” by EE Bagley.


John C. Birdlebough High School students were selected to participate in the 2016 OCMEA All
County Band Festival. In the front row, from left are band members Morgan Bajish, Emily
Roberts, Derick White and Zoe Heckert. In the back row, from left are: Dan Knowlton, Dixon
Ameele, Sean Sievers, Brian Breen and Jacob Nicolini. Absent from the photo is Mattingly Gleason.

EJD students earn Scholastic Art Awards

Fifteen Emerson J. Dillon Middle School students are among the elite artists in the region, as they were recently recognized with Scholastic Art Awards.

The annual art competition showcases student creativity in a variety of categories. Nearly 5,000 pieces of art are submitted from thousands of seventh through 12th-grade students, and a team of professional artists judge the submissions to determine the winners.

“We are pleased to announce that 15 EJD students were among the winning selections for the 2016 Scholastic Art Show, including three Silver Key honors and two Gold Key awards,” said EJD art teacher Ashley Modafferi. “Congratulations to the winners from EJD!”

Students Tamika Stobart and Savanah Neupert took home Gold Key awards, while Silver Key awards went to Alexis Capenos, Grace Arnold and Ayden Slack. Honorable Mention awards were presented to Brianna Buonagurio, Alexandria Mills, Vanessa River, Tina Li, Katelyn Kenner-Carbonaro, Natalie King, Danielle Case, Julianna Lewis, Teresa Uhl and Morgan Kosakowski.

The students’ artwork will be on exhibit from Jan. 15-26 at the Whitney Applied Technology Center at Onondaga Community College. This exhibit is free and open to the public. 



Phoenix eighth-graders prepare for high school

The eighth-graders of the Phoenix Central School District recently took a trip to John C. Birdlebough High School (JCB) where they were introduced to the many elective choices that will be available to them next year.

Students rotated through classrooms, exploring the words of art, music, technology, business and leadership. They were able to talk with teachers and get a feel for what the classes would be like. From band, to engineering concepts, to accounting principles, there is plenty for the students to get involved with next year.

Some electives even offer the earning of college credit at no cost. Guidance Counselor Nora Germain said that many students in the past have graduated with more than 20 credits, enabling them to graduate early from college. Parents were invited to the school that evening for the chance to explore the school and its classes with their students.

To conclude the morning, Birdlebough’s Chamber Singers put on a performance for the eighth-graders in the auditorium, singing the hit Disney song “Let it Go” from “Frozen” among others. Students from the singing group encouraged those in the eighth grade to plug in to what the school has to offer and to not miss out on the opportunities available to them.

Phoenix eighth-grade students Brianna Buonagurio, Taylor Petrie, Grace Arnold and
Madison Kalt display their welcome folders as they explore the art classroom of
John C. Birdlebough High school at eighth-grade orientation. 

Phoenix students launch fundraising campaign for OCAWL

Student council members from Emerson J. Dillon Middle recently launched the annual Adopt-a-Cause campaign to help a local animal care organization.

For the second year in a row, the students chose to support the Oswego County Animal Welfare League, which rescues and cares for pet until they are given a forever home.

Students have already started their fundraising efforts by hosting a candy counting contest. As part of the contest, students had an opportunity (for a small fee) to guess the number of pieces of candy in two separate jugs. The winners were Tatetum Patnode and Nicholas Hanson.

The fundraiser netted $212 for OCAWL. However, students are pushing to make an even bigger impact. More fundraisers are planned for the coming months, including a hat day, food and supply collection, and other activities.