Due to the hard work of three teachers, their students, and in recognition of their commitment to implementing the Open Space Stewardship Program (OSSP), the Islip School District received the title of “Outstanding School District” from the Educational Outreach Office at Brookhaven National Lab (BNL). The OSSP at BNL is a consortium of schools and districts spanning Long Island, Queens, and New York City. The goal of the program is to provide students with training and opportunities to perform authentic field science in and around their locales, while engendering an appreciation for the natural world. Every year, students are invited to a symposium held at BNL, where presentations detailing the work completed throughout the year are given.
High School science teacher Kelly Mackey, Middle School science teacher Ashley Bloch, and Middle School enrichment teacher Julia Johnson and their students have been actively participating in the program for the last five years, with their contributions to their symposium growing more substantial each year.
Mrs. Johnson's EXCEL students, as well as Ms. Mackey’s Introduction to Research Problem students have been actively studying the two ponds on the main campus, while the students in Ms. Bloch’s class submitted an application for and won beam time at the National Synchrotron Light Source at BNL to study water purification systems.