Half Hollow Hills Central School District
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|Half Hollow Hills
Central School District
Perfectly blending academics,
athletics, and the arts
|525 Half Hollow Road
Dix Hills, NY 11746
Suffolk County, New York
|Asst. Superintendent(s)||Patrick Harrigan, Mary A. Rettaliata, Anne Marie Marrone Caliendo, John O'Farrell|
|Accreditation(s)||New York State Education Department, Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools|
|Schools||two high schools, two middle schools, five elementary schools|
|Budget||$222 million (2012–3)|
|Students and staff|
|Student-teacher ratio||13.08 (2010–1)|
Half Hollow Hills Central School District (#5) is located in parts of Dix Hills and Melville, New York, as well as small parts of Wyandanch Deer Park and Wheatley Heights. The district includes parts of both Huntington and Babylon townships. The school district comprises nine schools (five elementary, two middle, and two high schools).
The district has two high schools (East and West), two middle schools (Candlewood and West Hollow), and five elementary schools (Otsego, Paumanok, Signal Hill, Sunquam, Vanderbilt).
High School East is located at 50 Vanderbilt Parkway in Dix Hills, New York, across the street from the Dix Hills branch of the Half Hollow Hills Community Library. Hills East is fed from West Hollow Middle School and is the larger of the two high schools in the district. The current principal is Dr. Jeffery Woodberry, who started in fall of 2007. The building was once used as both a middle school and a high school, which were located side-by-side and connected to one another, so the building is sprawling. For the same reason, Hills East has redundant facilities: two main offices, two nurses' offices, two gymnasiums (and two pairs of men's and women's locker rooms), two auditoriums, and two cafeterias (one has since been converted to a weight room). The class of 1978 was the last class where East was the exclusive high school in the district; commencing in 1979 there were graduating classes from both high schools. In 2013, Half Hollow Hills High School East ranked #314 on Newsweek's list of Best High Schools in America. The Hills East school mascot is the Thunderbird, which wears the school colors of red, black, and white.
High School East features a Planetarium, located one floor above the main office. It features a Spitz A3P planetarium projector, and is usually used to host class trips from the middle and elementary schools, in addition to being the home of the Hills East Astronomy Club, where students are taught about the night sky, astronomy and mythology by fellow students and teachers.
High School East also contains the Eugene Orloff Auditorium, which seats a total of 2,200 on two levels, making it the second largest not-for-profit auditorium on Long Island. It hosts various school events throughout the year, including the Spring Musical, Graduation, Academic Awards, and Athletic Awards. The space is also rented out to local companies for events throughout the year. The stage is a full Broadway-sized stage (88 feet wide, 49 feet deep, three stories tall for fly space (hanging scenery)). The stage has an orchestra pit containing two pistons (although only one functions) that are capable of raising and lowering the pit. The Eugene Orloff Auditorium is infamous for its low quality acoustics, as it was constructed of concrete and never completed. The music wing of the school is located in the hallway right behind the stage. The school also has a recently renovated Lecture Hall. It is usually the host of small gatherings and meetings, as well as Advanced Placement exams.
High School West, also known as Hills West, is located at 375 Wolf Hill Road in Dix Hills, New York. In 2013, Newsweek ranked West #248 on its Best High Schools in America list. In the 2011–2012 school year, it had 1,480 students and 101 teachers, for a student/teacher ratio of 14.68. The school's demographics are 63% white, 16% black, 6% Hispanic, 14% Asian/Pacific Islander, and less than 1% American Indian, Alaskan, or two or more races. Its male–female ratio is 53–47. The school receives Title I funding and 11% of its students are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch.
The school was built in 1975 and includes a track, turf field, and natatorium. The natatorium is adjacent to the "North Cafeteria" and is primarily used for swim meets, community events, gym classes, and occasional school trips from the other schools within the district. The school grounds of High School West are adjacent to those of Signal Hill Elementary School, which is located at the intersection of Wolf Hill Road and Caledonia Road. West students generally attend Candlewood Middle School from 6th to 8th grade. As of Fall 2013, Dr. Michael Catapano is the West's principal.
Hills West has been successful in a variety of sports including Cross Country, Track, Football, Basketball, Soccer, Swim, Dance, and Volleyball. In 2009, the Cross Country team won the Suffolk County A Championship. In 2010, they once again won the Suffolk County A Championship, however a disqualification of one of the runners led them to take second place. The winter track team won 7 straight county titles (2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011) and in the spring of 2007, 2008 and 2009 the spring track team has won the league by going undefeated. In addition, the Colts have fielded strong baseball teams over the years, winning multiple league titles, two county championships, and a state championship in 2003. The Varsity Boys Basketball team has won 3 Suffolk County AA championships (2008, 2010 and 2011) And won back to back Long Island Championships (2010 and 2011). The first time that has been accomplished in school history. The Boys Basketball team has made the class AA playoffs every year since 2006. In 2009, the Football team also won its first Long Island Championship in school history. Head Coach Bill Mitaritonna was named Newsday's HS Basketball Coach of the Year (2010). The Varsity Soccer team made the state semi-finals in 2007. The Hills Swim team has gone undefeated and won league and county champs. The Varsity Football Team has made the playoffs the past 5 of 8 years and were the 2009 Long Island Champions. In 2014, The Hills West Girls Softball team won its first ever Suffolk County Championship with a 22-4 record. Hills West Dance team, the Wranglerettes, are the 2007 champions in the Long Island Kickline Association competition, winning in the jazz category for the 14th year, and in the newly created hip hop category. The official school mascot is the Colt. The school's colors are red and gold.
Candlewood is the second middle school that underwent renovations in 2003. The school is located at 1200 Carll's Straight Path, Dix Hills, New York. The current principal is Andrew Greene. The mascot is the Cougar and the current school colors are Red and Gold. A track has been completed. Roughly 1,200 students attend the school.
West Hollow is the largest middle school in the district. It was built in 1970. It is located at 250 Old East Neck Road, Melville, New York. The current principal is Milton K. Strong. The mascot is the Wolverine, the current school colors are Red, White, Black and occasionally blue. Around 1,700 students attend the school.
At one time there were 8 operating elementary schools: Manasquan (now a district office) fed Burr's Lane Junior High School (Now Five Towns College campus), Vanderbilt, Otsego, and Forest Park feed to Candlewood and High School West, and Signal Hill, Chestnut Hill, Paumonok, and Sunquam feed to West Hollow and High School East. Two have recently been closed, Chestnut Hill and Forest Park, one from each High school's tracks. The newest of the elementary schools, Sunquam, was opened in 2000 after being shut down for several years previous. It is still operating today, and is located across the street from a branch of the Half Hollow Hills Library.
Half Hollow Hills is known for its district-wide theater programs that extends to all schools in the district. This opportunity begins in 5th grade with the "Hills On Stage" program.
Both High School East and High School West are known for their research departments, which have produced a number of Intel Science Talent Search, Intel ISEF, and Siemens Westinghouse Competition finalists over the years.
The Fran Greenspan Administration Center (formerly Manasquan Elementary School) serves as the central administration building for the Half Hollow Hills School District. It is located on Half Hollow Hills Road, on the same property as High School East. In addition to housing the offices of the Superintendent and other administrators, Central Office serves as the location for a small mock-astronautics program for children and certain community events, as well as child care services. The Academically High Aptitude Program (A.H.A.P) of the district is also held at Manasquan for 3rd-5th graders along with a preschool and Reach CYA.
- Stephen Bowen, West '02, professional football player
- Tobias Harris, West '10, professional basketball player
- Mark LoMonaco of The Dudley Boyz, East '90s, pro wrestler
- Ralph Macchio of The Karate Kid, West '79, actor
- Kyle Merber, West '08, professional runner
- James Metzger, East '77, businessman and philanthropist
- Greg Mottola, East, writer-director of Superbad and Adventureland
- Northern State, West '90s, hip hop trio
- Michael Prywes, writer-director
- Debbie Wasserman Schultz, East '84, American politician
- Issler, Mackenzie (February 13, 2013). "Half Hollow district to keep all schools open". Newsday. Archived from the original on February 15, 2013. Retrieved February 15, 2013.
- "Search for Public School Districts – District Detail for Half Hollow Hills Central School District". National Center for Education Statistics. Institute of Education Sciences. Retrieved February 15, 2013.
- Half Hollow Hills: OUR SCHOOLS
- Half Hollow Hills: HIGH SCHOOL EAST
- "2013 America's Best High Schools". www.newsweek.com. Retrieved 2015-07-27.
- Half Hollow Hills: CLUBS AND ACTIVITIES
- "School Detail for Half Hollow Hills High School West". National Center for Education Statistics. Archived from the original on June 28, 2014. Retrieved June 28, 2014.
- Molinet, Jason (February 5, 2002). "Bowen Takes a Break to Sign With Hofstra". Newsday. Cablevision. Archived from the original on December 27, 2013. Retrieved December 27, 2013.
- "Stephen Bowen, DE for the Washington Redskins at NFL.com". NFL. 2013. Archived from the original on December 27, 2013. Retrieved December 27, 2013.
- Sleter, Greg (March 5, 2012). "Harris Gets First Start Vs. Orlando". Patch Media. AOL. Archived from the original on December 28, 2013. Retrieved December 28, 2013.
- Mallozzi, Vincent M. (November 12, 2011). "Still Waiting for That N.B.A. Moment". The New York Times. Archived from the original on December 28, 2013. Retrieved December 28, 2013.
- Cacciola, Scott (February 10, 2011). "A Paint-by-the-Numbers Star". The Wall Street Journal. News Corporation. Archived from the original on December 28, 2013. Retrieved December 28, 2013.
- "Boyz to men". Sunday Mail. Kuala Lampur. October 22, 2000. p. 74 – via ProQuest.
Buh Buh graduated from the Half Hollow Hills High School East in the early 1990's.(Subscription required.)
- Gay, Verne (March 21, 2011). "ON TV: Macchio mambo?". Newsday. Cablevision. p. A14 – via ProQuest.
Ralph Macchio, the original "Karate Kid," ... was born in Huntington, raised in Dix Hills, and attended Half Hollow Hills West High, graduating in 1979.(Subscription required.)
- Kaufman, Bill (April 26, 1983). "Roughening the edges to become an 'Outsider'". Newsday. Cablevision. p. A21 – via ProQuest Historical Newspapers: Newsday (1940-1985).
Macchio, the son of Ralph and Rosalie Macchio and a 1979 graduate of Half Hollow Hills High School West ...(Subscription required.)
- Pawel, Miriam (May 14, 1981). "SHOWBIZ: Promoted to star, ex-student comes home". Newsday. Cablevision. p. 11 – via ProQuest Historical Newspapers: Newsday (1940-1985).
... Macchio ... graduated two years ago from Half Hollow Hills High School West in Dix Hills.(Subscription required.)
- "New York Boys' Track Athlete of the Year". ESPN. August 18, 2008. Archived from the original on February 17, 2016. Retrieved February 17, 2016.
- Halley, Jim (February 3, 2008). "After Millrose win, Merber right back to work for school". USA Today. Archived from the original on February 17, 2016. Retrieved February 17, 2016.
- Vaccaro, Chris R. (March 10, 2012). "Hills Alum James Metzger Starts Lacrosse Endowment". Patch Media. AOL. Archived from the original on December 28, 2013. Retrieved December 28, 2013.
- Parks, Steve (March 13, 1997). "THE DAY TRIP THAT NEVER WAS / With $60,000 and lots of imagination, a Dix Hills filmmaker takes his first feature along the LIE to Soho". Newsday. Cablevision. p. B4 – via ProQuest: Newsday (1985–present).
[Mottola] never dreamed of making movies while going through Candlewood Elementary School or even after graduating from Half Hollow Hills High School East.(Subscription required.)
- Guzmán, Rafer (March 26, 2009). "Dix Hills' Greg Mottola relives 'Adventureland'". Newsday. Cablevision. Archived from the original on December 28, 2013. Retrieved December 28, 2013 – via ProQuest: Newsday (1985–present).
... Greg Mottola, a Dix Hills native whose 1984 summer job there inspired his new film, "Adventureland," may have an explanation. ... His 1996 debut, the satirical drama "The Daytrippers" (featuring Hope Davis, Liev Schreiber and Parker Posey), followed a dysfunctional Long Island family on an eventful drive into Manhattan. His second, more famous film, "Superbad," was a super-crude comedy starring then-unknowns Jonah Hill and Michael Cera.
- Stark, Ian J. (July 19, 2013). "Checking in with Hesta Prynn". Newsday. Cablevision. Archived from the original on December 28, 2013. Retrieved December 28, 2013.
- Lipson, Karin (April 23, 2003). "A Rookie Savors His Baptism by Fire Island / LI filmmaker shoots 'Mickey Stern' at his parents' beach house". Newsday. Cablevision. p. B2 – via ProQuest: Newsday (1985–present).
He was inspired, Prywes said, by the burgeoning Long Island indie scene, especially the work of two fellow alumni of Half Hollow Hills High School East ...(Subscription required.)
- Palmer, J. Jioni (April 1, 2005). "TERRI SCHIAVO 1963-2005, LI roots, divergent views". Newsday (Nassau and Suffolk ed.). Long Island. p. A44 – via ProQuest.
... Wasserman Schultz, a 1984 graduate of Half Hollow Hills East High School ... hasn't lived on Long Island since leaving to attend college ... but she returns frequently. 'My best friend still lives on Long Island,' she said.