New School Year Brings an Expanded and Renovated PMHS
The 2004-2005 school year opened with a newly expanded and renovated Patchogue-Medford High School. After over 2 years of construction, PMHS was ready to open its doors to new students on Sept. 7, 2004. For more than 25 years, PMHS was a 10th through 12th grade high school with the 9th graders attending the middle schools. The expansion project allows the new school to become a 4 year high school accommodating 9th through 12th grade students.
The new building has 76 additional classrooms, 2,950 students, 225 teachers, a second gymnasium, a renovated library and a cafeteria/sunroom for the faculty and staff. A unique aspect to the high school is the concept of two co-principals, Michael Locantore and Jay Matuk. Michael Locantore was previously principal at Saxton Middle School while Jay Matuk comes to Patchogue-Medford with several years experience as principal at Connetquot High School.
The “team” approach has been implemented at PMHS with each grade level assigned an assistant principal, a dean and a core group of guidance counselors. The 9th grade assistant principal/dean team is made up of Ken Costa and Linda Leto. The 10th grade team is comprised of Judy Soltner and Kevin Ray. The 11th grade team is made up Randy Rusielewicz and Paula Lindsay and the 12th grade team is made up of Michael Genovese and Gary Marangi.
The formation of “advisories” for the 9th and 10th grade students has been introduced this school year, as a way to help students adjust to high school life. Each advisory has only 15 students and it acts like a homeroom with an extra special touch. Advisory teachers are there for their students in any aspect that they may encounter whether it is a lost textbook, a jammed locker or any other situation that may arise. Advisory teachers also celebrate birthdays and special events for the students in their group. Pat-Med teachers received special Advisory training last May to help implement this new program in the high school.
Although quite large, the new high school building is welcoming to its students and faculty members. The new building opened with a smooth transition aided by the cooperative efforts of all the teachers.