Before recognizing individual teams and athletes, Athletic Director Dave Sunkes announced that all nine of the district’s fall varsity sports teams were named New York State Scholar Athlete Teams. The distinction is awarded to teams whose grade point average is greater than or equal to 90 percent.
Sunkes went on to recognize the High School Girls Varsity Volleyball Team for their achievement this season, as they reached the Section II Class AA championship match this season, ultimately losing to Shenendehowa.
“We had many, many individual accomplishments, but if you were at the sectional championship game, we played Shenendehowa at Saratoga High School, there was a feeling there. It was electric,” he said.
“We had a great showing, in a program that has been building for years and years and years and has now reached a pinnacle. Now we are playing for sectional championships. Now we are doing things that we had hoped for a few years ago, and that has a lot to do with the ladies in the back, the work that they put in and our coaching staff.”
Sunkes also recognized the five members of the Girls Varsity Swimming and Diving Team who qualified for the New York State meet this year. The five athletes are Tierra Damico, Emma Hoffman, Annalise Pepper, Corinne Pepper and Emma Swistak.
Lastly, Sunkes recognized five students who reached first team all area, first team Suburban Council status in their individual sports.
The students are sophomore soccer player Caitlin Wania, junior football player Jake Cook, senior football player Elijah Washington, senior volleyball player Laiken Fox and senior soccer player Schuyler Mann.
Sunkes went on to announce that Mann had been named to the first team for all of New York State on Tuesday.
Board of Education President Kevin Schaeffer congratulated the students saying, “I think it’s wonderful that all of our teams are student scholar athletes.”
Schaeffer noted that the success of the teams and individual players comes not just from skill, it also comes from their desire to succeed, which he said will carry them to future successes.
Following the student recognition, district officials recognized seven teachers from three buildings for their effort and achievements.
Three teachers from the Ballston Spa High School were recognized for being selected to the New York State Master Teacher Program. The program is offered to the highest performing science, technology, engineering and math teachers.
The program creates a network of teachers and offers a number of professional development experiences to deepen teacher’s understanding of STEM content and the best methods of teaching their students in their particular communities. The goal of the program is to attract students to STEM related careers.
The three teachers named to the Master Teacher Program include John Balet, Matthew Glogowski and Ank Meuwissen.
Marissa Bongo from the High School was recognized for her innovative teaching methods and her willingness to utilize technology to impact learning. Bongo was recently asked to give a presentation to master’s students on the subject.
Cailin Rabideau of Milton Terrace Elementary School was recognized for planning and organizing the Veterans’ Day Assembly hosted at the school. Many veterans from all branches of the military and their families attended and participated in the event.
Another Milton Terrace teacher, Megan Haessig, was recognized for her work supporting her colleagues with professional development. From the summer to December Haessig provided or arranged 14 professional development sessions that 201 teachers participated in.
Finally, Wood Road Elementary School Psychologist Jana Miller was recognized for her work providing support to students, families and staff members alike on a day to day basis and in times of crisis. Miller helps teachers develop behavior plans, discusses strategies to help students succeed in the classroom and listens when the teachers simply need someone to talk to.