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Port Jefferson Middle School Orchestra Shines at Chamber Music Festival Downtown

The talented orchestra students from Port Jefferson Middle School. thumbnail259721
The talented orchestra students from Port Jefferson Middle School thumbnail259722
The talented orchestra students from Port Jefferson Middle School thumbnail259723
The talented orchestra students from Port Jefferson Middle School. thumbnail259742

The talented orchestra students from Port Jefferson Middle School once again captivated audiences with their exceptional musical prowess at the annual Chamber Music Festival held downtown at Harborfront Park. This marks the fourth consecutive year that the students have participated in this prestigious event, showcasing their dedication to musical excellence and community engagement.

Set against the picturesque backdrop of the Village Center, the Port Jefferson Middle School orchestra delivered captivating performances, enchanting attendees with their skillful renditions of classical and contemporary pieces. Their passionate commitment to music was evident in every note, earning them resounding applause and admiration from the audience.

We are incredibly proud of our orchestra students for their outstanding performances at the Chamber Music Festival, said Dr.Vanessa Salzman, orchestra teacher at Port Jefferson Middle School. Their talent, hard work, and enthusiasm continue to inspire us all, and it's truly rewarding to see. The annual Chamber Music Festival highlights our students' abilities to take a leadership role within a smaller musical ensemble. In addition to their technical growth, they are establishing social and emotional learning skills through experiencing this genre of music.

In addition to their musical achievements, the students have also demonstrated a commendable spirit of community service. Teaming up with the Suffolk County Legislator's Office downtown, they have actively engaged in efforts to support Baxter's Pet Pantry, a local organization dedicated to providing food and care for pets in need. Through their partnership, the students have reached out to sponsors and secured donations on behalf of Baxter's Pet Pantry, showcasing their commitment to making a positive impact beyond the realm of music.

Date Added: 6/14/2024

Port Jefferson Middle School Science Olympiad Team Excels in New York State Competition

Port Jefferson Middle School Science Olympiad team. thumbnail259223
Port Jefferson Middle School Science Olympiad team. thumbnail259224

The Port Jefferson Middle School Science Olympiad team showcased their dedication and scientific prowess at the New York State Science Olympiad Competition, held at East Syracuse Minoa High School. Out of 40 teams, Port Jefferson Middle School finished in the top third, at 12th place overall. The finish stands as a testament to the team’s hard work and commitment.

Throughout the competition, students demonstrated exceptional knowledge of scientific principles and engineering concepts while participating in various challenging tasks. Their efforts were rewarded with a total of five medals across different events, further solidifying their standing among the state’s top contenders.

Coach Adam Bouchard, a Port Jefferson Middle School science teacher, expressed his pride in the team’s achievements. “The students put a solid effort into preparing for the competition,” Coach Bouchard said. “I am proud of the team and I am looking forward to next year with the next group of students.”

The Port Jefferson Middle School team’s success was bolstered by their outstanding performance in events such as Fossils, Anatomy, Dynamic Planet, Forestry, and Tower. Medal winners include:

Second place - Fossils, Jonah Boerboom and Dean Zaltsman
Seventh place - Anatomy, Isaac Rubenstein and Klea Mehmeti
Seventh place - Dynamic Planet, Joshua Kwon and Jonah Boerboom
Seventh place - Forestry, Jonah Boerboom and Isaac Rubenstein
Fifth place - Tower, Dasha Zacharova and Bryan Hyrycz

Additionally, the team narrowly missed medals in four other events, including Can’t Judge a Powder, Crime Busters, Ecology, and Reach for the Stars, showcasing their versatility and depth of knowledge across multiple disciplines. Congratulations to all team members and medal winners for their outstanding achievements in the New York State Science Olympiad Competition. The Port Jefferson Middle School community looks forward to celebrating their continued success in future endeavors.

For more information regarding the Port Jefferson School District and its students’ many achievements, please visit the District’s website: and follow our Facebook page:

Date Added: 6/5/2024  

Port Jefferson School District Excels in 2024 National Latin Exam

Left to right. Kristina Shterengas, Eric Chen, Kevin Hong, Ollie Rhame, Clara Pearce, Narin Karakurum, Emily Snyder, Alice Snyder, Andi Kelly thumbnail257358
Sam Perez-Flesler thumbnail257359

The Port Jefferson School District is proud to announce the outstanding accomplishments of Earl L. Vandermeulen High School and Port Jefferson Middle School on this year’s National Latin Exam. With over 100,000 participants from all 50 states and 26 counties, the National Latin Exam is one of the nation’s premier Latin assessments, and we are so happy to see our Port Jefferson School District’s students excelling on it.

Proficiency in Latin as demonstrated on the exam merits one of 4 designations, Summa Cum Laude, which is awarded to students who scored the highest on the exam; Maxima Cum Laude, which is an award to students with the second-highest score; Magna Cum Laude, which is awarded to a student who surpasses the international core average by a significant margin; and Cum Laude, which is awarded to students who score above the national average.

“We are immensely proud of the exceptional achievements our students have attained in this year’s National Latin Exam,” said Jessica Schmettan, Superintendent of Schools. “Congratulations to all the winners, and thank you for showing us that hard work and determination truly pay off. We look forward to celebrating many more accomplishments in the future as our students continue to excel academically and beyond.”

To commemorate their success, winners of the Summa Cum Laude designation received a gold medal, winners of the Maxima Cum Laude designation received a silver medal, and the winners of the Magna Laude and the Cum Laude designations received certificates.

Port Jefferson Middle School:
Clara Pearce - Summa Cum Laude
Sam Perez-Flesler - Summa Cum Laude
Ollie Rhame - Cum Laude

Earl L. Vandermeulen High School:
Narin Karakurum - Maxima Cum Laude
Kevin Hong - Magna Cum Laude
Kristina Shterengas - Cum Laude
Madison Testa - Cum Laude
Alice Snyder - Summa Cum Laude
Emily Snyder - Magna Cum Laude
Andi Kelly - Cum Laude
Eric Chen - Cum Laude

The success of our students in the National Latin Exam is a testament also to the dedication of our educators and the supportive community within the Port Jefferson School District. We extend our gratitude to the teachers, parents, and community members who have played a vital role in nurturing a love for learning and fostering an environment where students can thrive. Together, we celebrate this momentous achievement and look forward to continued success in the pursuit of knowledge and excellence.

Date Added: 4/15/2024