Village School Students Honored By Board of Education

Each year, the Great Neck Board of Education acknowledges several Village students for their contributions to our school. At the February 12, 2018 Board of Ed. meeting this year’s winners were honored. Students who recognized were Brianna Kohler for Most Improved, Ben Reiss for Quintessential Student, Emma Strassberg for Community Service, Danielle Gruber for Academic Achiever, and Britney Trachtenberg for Rookie of the Year.  

When asked about why this evening is special, Steve Goldberg said, “First of all, it is validating to have the Board of Education recognize Village School, because sometimes we fly under the radar, and we forget how appreciated we are. Secondly, as an ungraded school, there are few opportunities to recognize special, individual student achievement.”  

Also, Steve said that such an award looks great on a college application, and since we at Village don’t have a lot of extracurricular options, the awards becomes valuable when creating a college resume. 

Lastly, Steve commented that, “the annual awards are also when we get the opportunity to show the Board what Village School is about, which allows for a greater appreciation of our school.”

Congrats to the students who won this year!

Express Delivery — Baby Delivered in the HOV Lane on the LIE

On Tuesday, February 27th, at around 5:35pm, Sergeant Pete Scheuerer, who was on HOV duty cruising eastbound on the LIE in Dix Hills, heard on his radio that a baby was being born on the side of the road, just one exit away from him. Thirty seconds and a mile later, Scheuerer found the Hauppauge couple, Janine and Edward Livote, pulled over in the westbound HOV lane.

Suffolk Police Sgt. Pete Scheuerer (left), and Janine Presley-Livote with husband Edward Livote and baby Charlotte (right).

After a jump over the four-foot-tall median, the sergeant found newborn baby girl, Charlotte, being held in the father’s arms. The 911 dispatcher, Jon Hallock, had coached the couple on what to do. They were on their way to NYU Winthrop Hospital in Mineola, but the baby, who was already four days ‘overdue’, balked at crossing the county line.

Scheuerer recalls telling Mrs. Livote, “I don’t think you’re going to make it [to Mineola].” “She started to laugh…” he said. “I’ve never seen a mother like this. She was really controlled, calm, talking to me.”

This was Scheuerer’s third time delivering a baby as an NYPD officer, so he was able to notice that Charlotte was having a little trouble taking her first few breaths. He and the father laid the baby on the mother’s stomach, and Scheuerer dislodged a little clot of mucus from her throat.

As Mr. Livote was removing his shoelace to tie off the umbilical cord, highway Officer Brian Baumeister arrived on the scene and rushed over with his medical bag. They tied the umbilical cord off with the string from a surgical mask.

An ambulance from Dix Hills Fire Department took the parents and their newborn baby to Huntington Hospital, where both were in stable condition by Tuesday night.

As for Scheuerer, he said he tells people it’s not only skill, but also luck that makes a job well done: “Half this job is being in the right place at the right time.”

Earthquake Strikes Southeastern Mexico, Many Homes Destroyed

On Friday, February 16th, an earthquake measuring 7.2 on the Richter Magnitude scale struck southeastern Mexico. The epicenter was in Oaxaca. No deaths or injuries were reported from this earthquake, but many homes were damaged.

13 people were later killed when a helicopter carrying Interior Minister Alfonso Navarrete Prida crashed in a town near the earthquake epicenter.

A building that was destroyed by the earthquake.

Mexico is a frequent hotspot of earthquakes due to its location – the country sits right on top of Earth’s three largest tectonic plates. During seismic activity, multiple areas are affected – especially Mexico City, due to its foundation being a lakebed.

Many in Mexico fear the earthquakes after the 2009 quake that struck in September killing over 200 people and leaving buildings in disarray.

New Restaurant Opened In Great Neck

Looking for a place to satisfy your craving for falafel or savory kabobs? The new Greek restaurant, Greek Xpress, can fulfill your desire for Greek food for sure! Located conveniently at 37 Great Neck Road, it’s accessible after a busy day of shopping in town or quick bite to eat on your way to the library.

The sign inside the aforementioned restaurant that is making its debut in Great Neck.

You can reach them at (516) 570-6814 and can order directly from their website ( or from sites like GrubHub or Seamless. Upon clicking on their site itself, you’re given the choice of delivery or pick-up, and can also contact them through their Facebook page (www.facebook/gxgreatneck) as well. Some menu features are fresh dips made-to- order, garden salads, appetizers, specialty entrees, dinner specials, and even burgers. Additionally, they have an ice cream bar, kid-friendly entrees, and healthy smoothies.

I went to the restaurant in an attempt to try to speak with the owner, and he politely declined, saying that he was too busy and had to help his customers. Even though I was disappointed, the trip still paid off – I was able to witness the movement vibe of the restaurant. Customers seemed very happy and delighted with their meals. I saw that the restaurant seemed to have a lot of business as well. The staff were polite when dealing with

The inside of the restaurant.

hungry customers and also allowed me to take pictures of the restaurant. They seem interested in serving this town Greek food efficiently and at an affordable price, as well as motivated to serve their customers.

The menu boasts that their food is “fresh”, “Greek,” and “delicious,” that their 

Sample of Greek Xpress menu. 

lunch specials, available Monday through Friday are “amazing.”  The restaurant is environmentally-friendly and only includes napkins, utensils, and other single-use items on take-out orders by request only, as stated on the bottom of the menu on the last page. They also offer vegetarian options such as spinach pie, zucchini fritters, and falafel. It is a casual eatery with affordable dishes that makes this a place for everyone. 

There is not a set column for entrees on the menu and instead they sort it by what types of food. For example, all the different types of burgers are grouped together and all the different dinner specials are grouped together. They have many different foods to offer and they really seem to want to get as many different groups of people through the door as they can.


Village student wins Gold Key Award

An excerpt of Danielle’s poem, “Total Darkness.”

Recently, freshman Danielle Gruber’s was selected as a Gold Key winner by the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards in her region for her poem submission,  “Total Darkness.” The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards is a non profit organization that acknowledges writers and artists and their talent and ingenuity. This year there were more than 346,000 submissions and Danielle’s work was selected by a panel of judges and professionals. Currently, she has won a Gold Key level award, which will allow her work to advance to national judging. She’ll then be considered for and nominated for National Medals, which will be announced on March 13th, 2018.

We at Village are very proud of her and wish her the best of luck as the next round of judging commences!

Police Brutality and Racial Profiling

Two men shown holding up a banner showing deaths by police force

The police are the people who protect us, the people we feel the safest with. Right? Well, it’s a yes and no, in my opinion. Over the years, the police have been abusing their power and instilling fear and terror in citizens rather than feelings of safety and relief. All of these things are parts of what is called police brutality. Police brutality is the unnecessary force used by police on civilians including assault, abuse of weapons, and even murder.

Though this unnecessary force can be used on anyone, police brutality is more commonly used against people of color. In 2015 alone, police killed around 104 unarmed black men, twice the number of white men. Out of the 104 cases, only 13 case offenders were tried and charged.

An example of police brutality is the brutalization of a pregnant black woman, Charlena Cooks in 2015. The woman was charged unlawfully, after Cooks was caught in an argument with a white parent while dropping her child off at school. When police asked Cooks to identify herself she denied, which is allowed in certain states. A little while after denying to identify herself, Cooks was wrestled to the ground even after alerting the authorities she was pregnant. ACLU police say that she was charged with “resisting arrest,” but the charge was later dropped. This is just one instance of police brutality and racial profiling.

There are other instances of police brutality against other genders and races. In 2014, a 13- year- old Latino boy, Andy Lopez, was shot while walking through a vacant lot. A sheriff’s deputy mistook Lopez’s air soft gun for an automatic weapon, and shot Lopez to death. The deputy claimed that he fired because he feared for his life, for his partners’ lives, and for the community.  The officer was not charged.

Though these cases spurred protests and political debate, police brutality and racial profiling has not declined since.

Black lives matter activists being sprayed with tear gas in Phoenix

In 2017, the United States police force revealed 1,129 individuals have been killed in the span of just one year.

This just shows how violent someone in the police can be, and how they could over abuse their position. The fact that police brutality even has a name for it shows that there have been enough cases and enough events for it to be defined and classified as something. Police brutality shouldn’t be happening, it shouldn’t continue. In the black community, kids are taught at a very young age what they should do when a police officer approaches them. Certain races, even what sexuality one identifies with can make and individual more susceptible to encounters with the police thus opening the door for police brutality. Historically, police brutality occurs during protests and marches, not because the police officer is mad or upset, nor because he enjoys it, but instead as a tactic for safety or to control the crowds– pepper spray and tear gas are used to disperse groups that the police deem threatening, even when they may not be. To use force, or threaten force, during peaceful protests acts to “normalize” this sort of policing.

There should be changes happening, and a lot. For instance, policemen and women should be properly trained and taught alternative, positive intervention protocols. Most police brutality cases involve use of weapons including shooting their guns, tasers, and their plain fists, as first mode of intervention, rather than a last resort.

Additionally, all police brutality cases should be tried equally and perpetrators should be charged depending on the severity of the case and police officers should be tried as citizens, not as individuals above the law.  In order to decrease police brutality and fix police departments across this nation, proper education on different scenarios, races, and ethnicities should be given.  There should also be a wider diversity on a police force, rather than one race dominating the whole task force.  Some have suggested that police officers  who don’t have certain degrees, and pass certain tests both mental and physical, should be deemed unfit to fill their positions.

If these changes occurred, a lot of would change, less people would be going to prison, getting hurt, and even getting killed. Police brutality should be brought to an end, so should racial profiling. No one else should be getting hurt or murdered for silly reasons or bias.



Valentine’s Day Shooting

Parkland students participate in a candlelight vigil on February 15, the day after the shooting.

On Valentine’s day, Nikolas Cruz, a former student of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, entered the school armed with an AR-15. Cruz was wearing a gas mask and threw smoke grenades before pulling the fire alarm. This caused students to exit their classrooms into the hallway, where Cruz opened fire. He shot at least 31 students and staff before he was captured by police. The death toll is 17, and students who were in critical condition have stabilized, since the writing of this article. Cruz has been charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder.

Great Neck North High School’s Wrestling Competes in Qualifiers and Nassau Counties Tournaments

Leon Taryan

Saturday February 3, Great Neck North High Boys Wrestling team competed against other Nassau County Division 1 schools such as Great Neck South, Wantagh, North Shore, Mephem, Plainview, and Bethpage. The qualifiers tournament is what determines if a wrestler gets ranked among his or her weight class. If he is a wrestler in a certain weight

Johnathan Rismany

class, then he would have to rank first to third place in the Qualifiers tournament to move on to Counties, which is the next ranked tournament. After that, the wrestler would then move onto the States tournament.

Ariel Arabian

Four boys, Jonathan Rizmany-152; Ariel Arabian-160; Leon Taryan-285; Roy Livian-145, from Great Neck North High ranked in Qualifiers and moved onto the Counties tournament which was held during the weekend of February 10-11th at Hofstra University.  None of North High Schools contestants made it beyond Nassau Counties.

Two Teens Take Home Gold in Winter Olympics


Image result for red gerard

Red Gerard, gold medalist in the snowboarding slopestyle event.

USA athletes Chloe Kim and Red Gerard, both 17 years old, won gold medallions in the 2018 Pyeong Chang, South Korea Olympic Games. Gerard won the medal in the slope-style event on February 11th, and Kim won on February 13th in the half-pipe event.  Kim is the first female to complete a 1080 on the halfpipe. 

Chloe Kim, of the United States, reacts to her score during the women’s halfpipe finals.


When asked about her win, Kim said “it really hasn’t sunk in yet.”