SCA Makes School Fun And Fulfilling

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The Manhasset School Community Association (SCA) is the largest nonprofit organization in Manhasset. The SCA consists of parents, interested residents of the community and members of the school faculty and unites these various facets of the public school district into one dynamic and effective organization.

Its purpose is to promote closer cooperation between teachers and parents, school and community, to further at all times, the best interests of young people and to confer highest advantages in physical, mental, social and ethical education.

The SCA is run by an executive committee currently headed by Mary Beth Accurso and Nancy Schlaefer who are the executive presidents of the organization. Each school in the district has their own president and board who assist the school, along with myriad chairpeople, committees and liaisons. Volunteers are what make the SCA so successful.

“Parent involvement is a key to a child’s success,” says Accurso, who is the mother of five children. “Being a part of the Manhasset SCA for 17 years has given me the opportunity to develop close relationships with other parents, support our teachers and administrators, and provide a multitude of programs for the students due to the SCA’s fundraising efforts.”

The SCA provides special programs that target specific areas of a child’s experience at their school. Special programs are held throughout the year that give students in the district an opportunity to enjoy extracurricular activities and enrich their school experience.

“The SCA is all about community, and giving every family the chance to be involved and engaged no matter how much or little time they have,” says Schlaefer. “It’s incredibly gratifying to work with so many parent volunteers teaming up with our teachers and administrators to achieve one common goal: the best educational experience for our students.”

Numerous programs that used to be funded by the school have been supplemented or wholly assumed by the SCA, such as field trips for the elementary school students and morning and afternoon programs including Extended Extras, which provide classes, such as yoga, Spanish, Sign Language or S.T.E.M to elementary students before school begins. Saturday Series is a weekend program that is run in the fall and spring offering exciting courses like cooking, theater and so much more. All these programs are run with a budget and by volunteers from the community. They enrich elementary students’ life, but need an army of volunteers in order for the programs to be offered.

“I have felt connected with the community by sharing a common goal of creating the best educational environment for our Manhasset students,” says Accurso.

The biggest fundraiser for the SCA comes the first Saturday of May: the SCA Fair, held at Munsey Park Elementary School. The SCA Fair is set for Saturday, May 4, and it is the perfect family day for young and old. This time-honored tradition has been in place for 68 years. It will showcase the school’s talent onstage and offer shopping under the big tent, food from all corners of the world, games and, of course, rides for all ages. Parents are able to purchase all-day ride bracelets in advance of the date.

The fair is enjoyed by many, especially those bargain hunters who enjoy Attic Treasurers looking for beautiful plants to adorn their garden. Volunteers are desperately needed to help sell ice cream, tickets, food, books, rock-climbing sessions, etc.

Supporting the SCA enables a variety of programs to enrich the education and social life of Manhasset’s children through curriculum-related enrichment programs, including dance performances, guest authors, science museum presentations and more. The family theater series offers two live Saturday matinée performances each year. Recreational programs, such as Halloween parties and dances, are also organized.

Summer Studies Awards are given to high school juniors to explore individual areas of interest, and college grants are provided to graduating seniors who need financial help in paying for post-secondary education.

To learn more, visit manhassetsca.org.

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Elizabeth Johnson is former editor of Manhasset Press and Manhasset Press Magazine. Growing up in nearby Garden City and attending New York University, she is well-versed in the locale and knowledgeable about the beat she covers. Her community involvement is extensive and includes the Manhasset SCA, Kiwanis International, Manhasset Chamber of Commerce, St. Mary’s Church, and various civic and local charitable organizations. Curious by nature, her travels, community service, love of the arts as well as local sports give her the inside view to unique content. During her time at Anton, she has received several awards from the New York Press Association and the Press Club of LI, including the coveted "Best Community Newspaper" several years in a row.

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