J. Taylor Finley Middle School students always rise to an academic challenge, even when it involves a second or even a third language and the difficulties such studies can frequently pose.
Over 40 Finley seventh and eighth graders took the national French and Italian exams this past spring and their teacher, Dr. Gina Marie Trigian-Molvaut was thrilled to receive the extremely positive results.
This marked the third year that both exams were given in a digital format. Students took the exam on Chromebooks during a specially scheduled double period on the same date(s) as the thousands of other test-takers across the nation.
Finley’s participation in the national exam remains quite high as 10 seventh graders and eight eighth graders sat for Le Grand Concours (the name given to the national French exam) and 26 seventh graders took the national Italian exam. The two national exams offer students an opportunity to expand their language skills in a broader context.
Finley’s Dawin Preval led the school on Le Grand Concours, notching a silver medal after earning a ranking of fourth place in the Suffolk chapter and seventh in the nation.
Finley’s 44 national exam participants included (honorable mention award recipients denoted with an asterisk):
Le Grand Concours: Seventh grade
Doch-Annsler Antoine, *Sophie Bradford, Sergemio Cerome, *Kender Edouazin, Aislyn Franciscovich, *Annika Galvin, *Kieran Husselbeck, *Cecilia Kye, Danielle Mendikyan, Dawin Preval
Le Grand Concours: Eighth grade
*Sarah Berry Emma Brendel, *Cassidy Casabona, *Molly Fallon, *Jocelyn Kai, *Sophie Laserson, *Allison Neber, *Charlotte Soljanich
A dozen of the 18 Le Grand Concours Finley test-takers earned honorable mention recognition on the tough exam.
Le Grand Concours is sponsored by the American Association of Teachers of French. More than 85,000 students from all 50 states and many foreign countries participated in the exam, which is a premier event for those in grades 1-12 who are studying French.
Finley’s performance on the national Italian exam was exceptionally impressive. “Our results on the novice level exam for seventh graders were better than ever before because the exam now corresponds more closely to the first year Italian curriculum,” Dr. Trigian-Molvaut said. “We had more awards than ever in Finley history with the national Italian exam.”
Jamie Mejia-Ortez captured a Silver Award and Saray Castaneda-Gonzalez, Brad Nisipeanu, Estefany Quijada Mojica, Olivia Agosti, Miranda Bellissimo and Vincent Grassi all won Bronze Awards.
Also taking the national Italian exam (honorable mention award recipients denoted with an asterisk) were John Acompora-Miller, *Joseph Algieri, *Vito Aloe, *Stephanie Alvarado, *Anthony Annunziata, *Nick Barretta, *Victoria Befumo, *Nicholas Cesario, *Katerina Damiano, *Jack DelPonte, *Emma Hannigan, *Samuel James, Timothy Kusterbeck, *Isabella Lanfranco, *Daniela Luca, *James McCormick, *Gabriella Miller, *Kelly Morales and *Michael Mugno. Sponsored by the American Association of Teachers of Italian, the national Italian exam drew participation from 5,200 students from 20 states and Puerto Rico.
“I am very proud of all our Finley students who sat for the French and Italian national exams,” Dr. Trigian-Molvaut said. “By participating in this academic opportunity these students have not only demonstrated an extended interest in their acquisition of the French and Italian languages, but they have also implicated themselves as members in the Francophone and Italophone communities of our nation. They should all be congratulated for their personal investment and efforts to achieve academic excellence as middle school world language students of the Huntington School District.”