Northport always commemorates the tragedy of 9/11. Each year, we invite local veterans, first responders, police officers and guest speakers to bring the tragedy of September 11 alive for sixth grade students in a meaningful way. This year, due to Hurricane Irma, our program needed to be rescheduled a month and a half later. However, its importance was not diminished. Students listened to testimonials from Bill Arnold (local veteran and Northport Veteran Partner in Education), John McIntosh (Director of Operations for the American Security Council), and one of our business partners; viewed a movie by Maryanne Warren educating students about 9/11 which focused on the country’s response and Northport’s response; and listened to a musical selection called “Count On Me” sung by Sandra Tyndale Harvey.  Their essential learning experience was deeply moving and educational.

Northport students from across the campus made posters and banners depicting the tragedy of 9/11, and teachers in classrooms integrated lessons and discussions into their curriculum. This year, sixth grade students have a very special opportunity to win an all expenses trip to Washington D.C. by participating in an essay contest for themselves and one parent. We are thrilled as a school community to have our students offered this once-in-a-lifetime chance to visit and tour Washington and to attend the National Wreath Laying at Arlington National Cemetery.

In addition, teachers will be present the rules and norms to students so they may participate in an essay contest.  The essays (500 words or less) will focus on the topic “What Freedom Means to You and What Protects Our Freedoms in This Country!” Essays can be submitted for Northport sixth graders at

Sixth grader, Kevin Parra from Mrs. Allen’s class wrapped up his feelings, “I learned so much about the plane crashes and the Twin Towers, the people, and especially the eight children who died. I just learned so much. It was so sad!” Northport Media Center is officially dedicated to the eight children who perished on 9/11. It is memorialized as “Northport K-8 School 9/11 Children’s Memorial Library.”   WE WILL NEVER FORGET!

Author: LYNNE Gruszka

Northport K-8 School Media and Marketing Specialist