Heard Around the Watercooler

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Sleepy Hollow Middle School seventh grade students on Team Narwhal and Team Yeti collected more than 1,000 items for United for the Troops. This annual drive, founded by James Rathsmidt, was formed with the goal of sending a “little piece of home” to members of the military. The items were shipped overseas to men and women serving in the military just in time for the holiday season. In addition to items, students wrote cards of support and well wishes to be included in the packages.

Irvington Middle School students collected 501 toys, which were donated to families in need. This year’s toy drive, organized and run by the Spanish Club, surpassed last year’s toy drive record by 189 gifts. Spanish Club advisor Allyson Tempest said each homeroom in grades six through eight donated at least one gift. After all the toys were collected, the students and teachers participated in an afterschool wrap-a-thon. The toys were then donated to the Open Door Family Medical Center in Sleepy Hollow. “The members of the Spanish Club are most appreciative of the generosity of the entire Irvington Middle School community,” Tempest said.


Sleepy Hollow High School teacher Carlos Matute was recently featured on Univision television’s program, Maestros de Impacto Cambian El Futuro de sus Alumnus, or Teachers who Impact the Future of our Students. Matute was videotaped teaching his US History and Government class for ESL students at Sleepy Hollow High School and was recognized for his work creating a mentoring program for Latino students that meets regularly to discuss college goals, study habits, and other challenges faced by students who may not yet speak English fluently or may be new to the country. Matute started the mentoring program five years ago and recently received funding from the federal Project Exc-EL (Excellence for English Learners) to continue the mentoring program.
To view the Univision video, visit this link: http://www.univision.com/nueva-york/wxtv/noticias/educacion/maestros-de-impacto-cambian-el-futuro-de-sus-alumnos-video


Out of 10 teams across New York State selected this fall as top scholar-athlete teams, four were from Irvington High School. The Boys Cross-Country, Boys Soccer, Girls Field Hockey and Girls Cross-Country teams were named State Champion Scholar-Athlete Teams by the New York State Public High School Athletic Association. Varsity teams earned the state champion title by having all members maintain a GPA of 90 or higher. Members of the Boys and Girls Cross-Country teams held a GPA of 99.71; Boys Soccer, 96.67; and Girls Field Hockey, 97.42. “This is quite an accomplishment for these teams,” said athletic director Arthur McCormack. “It speaks to the commitment that our coaches and faculty have in working to support our student-athletes. The hard work and time management skills put in and developed by these athletes are evident with this achievement. These teams represent the spirit of high school athletics, which is to develop the whole student both in the classroom and in the athletic arena.” McCormack said the District has had a total of 29 New York State Scholar-Athlete Team champions, including this year’s champions, since 2002. The Scholar-Athlete State Champions will be presented with a banner for their school as well as a team certificate and pins for each team member. This is the 24th year of the NYSPHSAA Scholar-Athlete program.


Please send submissions about distinctions, honors, and awards given to local community members, students, and organizations to: thewatercooler@thehudsonindependent.com

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