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Letter to the Editor: St. William the Abbot Offers Top-notch Sports Program

Principal from Seaford Catholic school addresses recent athletic accomplishments and sports opportunities available.

If you are looking for an opportunity for your seventh and eighth grade students to participate in a competitive sports league, then your local Catholic elementary school may be the place for you. 

Years ago, Catholic schools on Long Island offered few, if any, inter-school athletic programs. The Catholic Middle School Athletic Association (CMSAA) has changed all that.

in Seaford, joined the CMSAA in the fall of 2006 with a boy’s basketball team. The following year girl’s basketball and boy’s baseball was added. 

Now, the school competes with girl’s volleyball and softball teams too, bringing a tremendous amount of school spirit and excitement to the entire St. William community. Fans fill the stand for games and the cheerleading squad pumps up the crowd. 

Success prevails at St. William the Abbot.  For the second year in a row, the girl’s basketball team won the Catholic Middle School "A" Championship after an undefeated season.  The girl’s volleyball team also finished the season with no losses. The boy’s basketball team finished their season in second place after an exciting championship game decided by just one basket.

The CMSAA is a run by volunteers from each participating school. At St. William the Abbot, Tobie McGovern and Nancy Delaney have worked countless hours building the middle school sports program. They and the many volunteer coaches share their gifts and talents with the students enabling St. William to offer successful programs that promote good sportsmanship and Catholic values.

The CMSAA sports are funded entirely by the students’ families. Typically it can cost between $75 and $125 per season; a very reasonable cost for middle school sports. At a time of austerity and cuts in local school budgets, St. William the Abbot offers an array of middle school sports opportunities that is tough to beat!

For more information, on these programs and other activities at St. William the Abbott School, go to www.stwilliamtheabbot.net or call 516-785-2752.

Chris Wendt March 28, 2012 at 04:36 PM
This is a very interesting outreach. I read this several times, each time with a slightly different take-away and intent to comment. I find this letter to be thought-provoking, and I hope others are thinking about what possibilities, both immediate and longer-term may be opened up for consdieration or even action by this. Should SSS open a dialogue with St. Willaim the Abbot?
Risa March 28, 2012 at 04:45 PM
Pardon my question if it should be an obvious one, but does this mean that students outside of St. William's and Catholic Schools period, could participate in the CMSAA sports teams?
Michael Conway March 28, 2012 at 05:04 PM
St. William's softball is off to a great start with a victory in their first game yesterday beating St. Agnes 8-4. Julia Calabro lead the charge pitching 6 great innings with 18 strike outs and hitting a 2 run homer. Hope our success continues with our next outing Tues against St. Elizabeth Ann Seaton in Bellmore. GO ST WILLIAMS!!!!
Tobie March 28, 2012 at 05:50 PM
No, you must be a registered student at the school, same as public school. The CMSAA(Catholic Middle School Athletic Association) is a group of Catholic grammar schools who formed a league to give their 7th and 8th grade students an opportunity to play for their school.
Lorraine DeVita March 28, 2012 at 06:03 PM
Congrats to the St. Williams girls softball team! Well aside from a GREAT education at St. Williams it seems they also now offer competetive interscholastic Sports for their 7&8 grade students. A wonderful alternative for parents to seriously comptemplate for their children in the coming months and years. afew other pluses of going to St. Williams from a pratical standpoint : a) not held to the whims of a budget B) Built in religious ed courses no running around after school-for communion or confirmation classes c) clothing costs are ALOT less and no morning fighting about what to wear or NOT to wear! (big plus for the mom on the go reduced DRAMA in the morning) BUT most importantly: A warm caring nurturing respectful educational family & community environment for your child to learn and grown. I believe St. Wiliams also offers extended day services also.. A wonderful alternative that should be seriously considered by parents. And its about time St. Williams got some press!
Risa March 28, 2012 at 06:49 PM
Thanks Tobie! That's what I assumed but after re-reading the first paragraph and some reader comments, I was unsure and wanted to clarify. Good luck to all of your teams this year!!!
Chris Wendt March 29, 2012 at 11:01 AM
Volunteer coaches... ...sports...funded entirely by the students’ families... ...a solid program not subject to outrageous fortunes, those slings and arrows of ridiculously high taxes, unpopular budgets, voter discontent, and an ax-wielding school board. There's three ideas to mull over. Incomprehensible is the fact that SSS has raised good money, hard cash, and a lot of it...and there is no spring sports season for the Seaford Middle School. As Regis Philbin quips in his current banking ad: "That's RIDICULOUS!" (Please do not recite the ridiculous "rules" in response). GO ST. WILLIAM!
Lorraine DeVita March 29, 2012 at 03:47 PM
Ah chris, dont you realize Seaford is alike an aging Athlete who gained weight- He keeps looking in the mirror and only sees the Star Athlete he was 15 yrs ago, not realizing everyone around has seen the progressive deterioration, the gradual bloated weight gain first 5 lbs the 10 then 20 and now at 30lbs overweight and even though his performance has dropped he is STILL in denial and sees no reason to develop an action to get BACK into shape to compete . He would rather live in his fantasy world and rest on the laurels of his past glory. He is the quinticential poster boy for Seaford SD. Denial, No Plan of action, certainly no sense of urgency and sadly of all no accountability or ownership of his condition..
Lorraine DeVita March 29, 2012 at 04:12 PM
Whats saddest of all is he is taking his TEAM down the toilet with him..The .SD and all those holding on to the past and the glories of yesteryear are letting THIS community down because it they are in denial, and while semi competitive, unless there is a drastic awakening, an immediate action plan put into place and a total 180 in "eating habits" an ephiphony of idealogies, this fat, sleepy SD is going to gradually be less and less competitive less and less in demand, reducing BOTH market value and student performance. Nice place to live if you want a cheaper home with sky high taxes where academic performance is average @ best and quite a few of your neighbors are THIS close to lis pendis or REO or BO because the powers that be didnt see the writing on the wall vis vi the economy and didnt make the appropriate adjustments to compensate. The aging overwieght athlete who could still be competitve- but he refuses to acknowledge he aint what he was. and is doing nothing to rectify the issues.
Hard Workin Mom March 29, 2012 at 08:42 PM
Lorraine why do u think so many folks in this town send their children to Catholic High School?? Because the educational ans sports programs are top notch, benefit them on college level , and the parents get their moneys worth without all this heart ache and drama!!!!
Lorraine DeVita March 29, 2012 at 09:25 PM
Hard working Mom, Totaly agree, thats what I did , except I sent my son to St. williams for 6-7-8 , wish I had done the same with my daughter,however they both attended Catholic HS and I couldnt be happier or prouder. Your also right when colleges see Catholic HS's,on applications, entrance is almost a given to the schools they apply to..Doors open quicker, and easier also academic and athletic scholarships are more frequently offered & obtained. Typically when students graduate Catholic HS's they are better prepared for the rigors of college even without AP courses.. Its a whole different mindset..and while no teenager is drama free the environment is ...
Lorraine DeVita March 29, 2012 at 10:11 PM
When students graduate in the top 100 of a catholic HS thats as if they are graduating int he the 25 of their respective public schools. Rankings and ratings of the SD effect college decisions. What is top 25 in one school may only be top 50 in another more academically challenging environment. When you havent SEEN the difference in quality you simply cant judge. An educated parent is their childs best champion. For those who think Catholic school parents dont care about passing a budget you couldnt be further fromthe truth. We CARE because the VALUE of our homes RIDES on the VALUE/Rating of the SD. If the SD is not rated high We lose value and you lose value + getting the best possible education for your child.Plus We pay a hell of alot more then a public school parent. We pay our full share of School taxes, our child is costing the school district 90% LESS by attending Private or Catholic schools PLUS we pay tuition and extra for all the bells and whistles our child takes advantage of. DeFeating a Sd budget is the furthest thing from any sane persons mind, It deflates the value of your investment, the largest investment most people have, their home. HOWEVER when the patients are running the insane assylum and the VALUE or ROI is not there because of mismangement or plain downright stupidty in some cases. then YES we stand make our voices heard and we question and sometimes we do vote no because our money isnt being spent wisely and YOUR kid isnt getting the best !
Chris Wendt March 30, 2012 at 10:34 AM
Beyond NY Public Schools, pay-to-play is fairly common. The "pay" part is not all on the parents of athletes, however. Paid commercial sponsorships are very common, and often the source of the 'big money' for lighted venues with turf fields, oh, and the those signs that indicate who the sponsors are. Yes, in pay-to-play situations parents are expected to pay a fee, and as with most things that involve parents and public or even private/religious schools, there are exceptions based on financial ability or need. In Connecticut and Pennsylvania, those exceptions are treated as 'scholarships' with money coming from a pool partially funded by the regular fees paid by parents and partially funded by fundraising activities. If you go to a game in PA, you will be expected to buy a ticket. Sports in some places in PA are so good that many townsfolk attend--and pay--for the true sports entertainment value, in addition to hometown 'spirit'. I think that, if NY State does not allow school districts to host paid sports sponsorships in the future, at some point school districts will be renting out their (empty) fields and gyms to the non-school sports leagues that will eventually have to replace school (taxpayer) funded sports programs, on a commercially sponsored and pay-to-play basis. And with private sector leagues will come those advertising signs. And lights. And other good stuff not subject to taxpayer anger and bad decision making by ax-wielding school boards.

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