By Hashina Sumy ’19
As high school students, we attend school for four years, and as the end of our senior year nears, many of us can’t wait to go to college and start a new chapter of our lives. Mr. Steve Basile, who has been teaching physical education and health for 36 years, will be retiring in June, and he is likewise ready to open up a new chapter of his life.
Mr. Basile has enjoyed his years teaching at Midwood. He has been teaching since 1982 and has taught at Midwood for 21 years.
Mr. Basile had always wanted to teach physical education.
He said, “When I was very young, in junior high, I wanted to be a gym teacher because I looked up to my coaches and wanted to pursue that career.”
Mr. Basile came to Midwood as a football and lacrosse coach for 10 years.
“Alan Arbuse, the former head football coach, told me about a job opening at Midwood, and he said that the best kids in the city go to Midwood,” said Mr. Basile. “I couldn’t agree more with the fact that the best kids in the city go to Midwood.”
Mr. Basile said, “I’ve had a lot of ‘best’ experiences in both coaching and teaching, and I don’t have any ‘worst’ experiences that come to mind.”
Mr. Basile’s job has changed significantly over time.
“The way physical education runs now is not what I signed up for in the 1982,” said Mr. Basile. “In 1982, the basics of physical education was to get kids moving and engage in physical activities; now they’re making physical education into another academic class rather than what it was meant for.”
When we think of retiring, we often think about buying a house or traveling the world. However, Mr. Basile has other plans in mind: horse racing.
“I have been involved in horse racing, and I hope to be more involved by spending more time at the track after retiring,” said Mr. Basile.
“Me and my friends own horses and we race the horses,” Mr. Basile added. “My horses race at Aqueduct Racetrack, Belmont Racetrack, and Saratoga Racetrack.”
Mr. Basile has been involved in horse racing partnerships for 25 years.
After retiring, Mr. Basile plans on spending more time in the barn watching the horses work out.
Mr. Roger Padula, a physical education teacher, has known Mr. Basile for 20 years. He has coached lacrosse with Mr. Basile and had met him on the field during a lacrosse game.
“My most memorable memory of him is going on an overnight school trip to Massachusetts with the lacrosse kids,” said Mr. Padula.
Mr. Padula said, “I will miss his infectious smile the most.”
Mr. Paul Leonetti, another physical education teacher who has known Mr. Basile for over 20 years, will also miss him dearly.
“Working together in gym, we always had a great time and we learned how to laugh,” said Mr. Leonetti. “We had a lot of laughs together. In a way, I feel like he was an older brother.”
Mr. Basile has had a good run teaching the kids at Midwood.
“I will miss the kids by far the most,” said Mr. Basile.