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John Glenn High School’s Class of 2022 Celebrate Commencement With Pride

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John Glenn High School celebrated the Class of 2022 on June 24 at the school’s 60th commencement ceremony. The seniors marched on to the football field, clad in blue and white caps and gowns, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance, led by Senior Class President Maya Polese, and the national anthem, performed by the high school's band under the direction of Vicki Henson.

The ceremony also served as a farewell and salute to retiring Assistant Principal Leroy Cole.

“Mr. Cole, your mark on the Elwood School District will last for decades,” Superintendent Dr. Kenneth Bossert said. “We will fill your position but sir, you can never be replaced."

Dr. Bossert and Principal Carisa Burzynski both offered congratulatory remarks, praising the seniors for their achievements. Burzynski noted that the class had the highest ever number of students collectively earning cum laude, magna cum laude and summa cum laude since the school adopted the system.

“Your children are pretty remarkable,” Burzynski told family and friends of the graduates in attendance. “And they have helped us to earn some really amazing accolades over the years.”

“It has been an absolute pleasure to watch you mature into the young men and women you are today,” Dr. Bossert said. “You have brought positive attention to our school district and given us all reason to celebrate and be filled with Elwood Pride.”

Salutatorian Trinity Hausch, valedictorian Anson Kwan, All-School President Alexandra Haddad and featured speaker Max Slesinski all spoke on behalf of the students during the graduation ceremony.

Hausch touched on themes of growth and change. “I hope we are all excited to meet the people we will become,” she said. “And I hope we promise collectively never to stop learning, never stop questioning, and above all, never stop being kind.”

“We’ve smiled and we’ve laughed,” Kwan said. “We’ve stuck together. And I think that’s the beauty of Elwood. Our size is the reason behind our greatest strength – our community. We, as Elwoodians, have always supported one another. Elwood is a place that thrives because of its community. And it’s through that community that I’ve learned so much.”

Haddad spoke on the seniors’ bonds of friendship and memories before introducing Slesinski, who was selected by his peers. He lightheartedly told his classmates to always enjoy the moment, quoting singer Miley Cyrus’ lyrics, “It ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side. It’s the climb.”

After receiving their diplomas and turning their tassels, the new Knights alumni tossed their caps in the air, beginning the next chapter in their lives.

Date Added: 6/28/2022

John Glenn HS Celebrates Future Performing Arts Majors

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Elwood-John H. Glenn High School held a college commitment celebration for its future performing arts majors on June 8.

Students recognized included Omolola Adewal, who will attend Ithaca College majoring in BFA acting; Blake Ghoering, who will attend SUNY Fredonia majoring in music education with string bass concentration; Toni Meyer, who will attend SUNY Fredonia majoring in music education with vocal concentration; Aidan McNamara, who will attend the University of Connecticut, majoring in BFA acting, Kaitlyn Schieble, who will attend Pace University majoring in BFA in film, television, voiceovers and commercial acting; and Jenna Velez, who will attend Manhattanville College majoring in BFA musical theater.

“All students had to go through a series of auditions for a number of schools, which may have included prescreens, preparing scores, reading monologues and in-person auditions and theory skills tests,” teacher Rachel Nagle said. “Preparation starts early for the performing arts majors, and they work diligently over a long period of time to end up at the right school with the right major for their intended career. We are proud to have encouraged these students throughout their time in Elwood, and look forward to where these paths take them.”

Date Added: 6/24/2022

John Glenn Recognizes June Students of the Month

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John Glenn High School students Cole Madden (grade 9), Elizabeth Clarke (grade 10), Alessandra Aversa (grade 11) and Jenna Zacharakis (grade 12) were recently selected as the school’s June Students of the Month.

Since 2019, one Glenn student from each grade has been nominated by their classmates to receive this honor. Students who are chosen exemplify respect, responsibly and positive relationships. Recipients of the award are often described by their nominators as students who push themselves and others to do their best, demonstrate positive school spirit and show perseverance in the face of adversity. Each month, nominations are sent to the All School Student Council, who narrow down the selection to two nominees from each grade. The Student of the Month Faculty Committee is then tasked with making the final decision.

Date Added: 6/23/2022

Harley Avenue Second Graders Fund Fox Adoption

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After collecting pennies through a social studies project, second graders in Deanna Cammarata’s second-grade class at Elwood’s Harley Avenue Primary School used mathematical skills to collect and count the proceeds. The students then researched animals and habitats and voted to symbolically adopt an Arctic fox through the World Wildlife Fund.

Date Added: 6/22/2022

Elwood Board of Education Honors Staff Accomplishments

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During the Elwood School District’s June 9 Board of Education meeting, staff accomplishments throughout the district were honored, including administrators and teachers who have achieved tenure, staff and teacher retirees, personnel with 25 years of district service, and the SCOPE Award winner. The honorees received awards and certificates and were individually lauded by administrators for their dedicated service to Elwood’s schools.

“I appreciate that the Board affords us the opportunity here to celebrate some special members of our staff, those that will continue with us, and those who are departing from our school community, but certainly not our thoughts,” Superintendent Dr. Kenneth Bossert said.

“We have an amazing class of teachers retiring,” said Board President James Tomeo. “We have an exemplary staff of 25-year members who have put in a lot of work, and they don’t miss a beat. Our teachers come in every day and make Elwood unique. We are a very different district compared to others around us, and it’s because of the teachers within the halls. For those tenured teachers, look around you at the people setting the examples. In 25 or 35 years, I won’t be here, but hopefully the next Board of Education administration will speak of you as highly as we were able to speak of our educators and administrators this evening.”

Administrative Tenure
Corey McNamara

Teacher Tenure
Lindsay Brady
Brittany Chalmers
Christiana Dobra
Ilene Fucci
Michael Hoenigmann
Dylan Kilkenny
Laurie Oriolo

Administrative Retiree
Leroy Cole

Staff Retirees
Patricia Biscardi (deceased)
Josephine Castellano
Irene Dougherty
Kathleen Fanara
Anthony Gallo
Peter Janovas
Christine Marchetti
Donna Regensberger

Teacher Retirees
Shari Coopersmith
Eleanor Grady
Linda Halber-Romano
Kevin Harrington
Vicki Henson
Suzanne Hulme
Irene Kossowsky
Beth Noon
Patricia Vaccaro-Scisci
Susanne Woods

25 Years of Service
Kelly DiBiase
Jacqueline Hooghuls
Patricia Iadarola
Christina Kerensky-DeSimone
James Morris
Frank Schiraldi

SCOPE Award Winner

Dr. Maureen Hull

Date Added: 6/22/2022