Board of Education Honors Students, Retirees

by Tom Walogorsky

When the Pawling Board of Education met on June 19, the evening was filled with celebration as students and faculty were recognized for their many accomplishments. The evening exalted not only ten exemplary students who are moving on to further their studies at colleges and universities, but also faculty members who were retiring or receiving tenure.

At a reception prior to the BOE meeting, the top ten students from Pawling High School were honored. Each student, led by Valedictorian Jake Koerner and Salutatorian Elsie Martin, was honored by the Board, which praised each of the top ten for achieving a cumulative academic average of above 100 percent. David Bellucci and Jennifer Hernandez, ranked seventh and eighth respectively, were also three-sport athletes. The students received a warm ovation from the many friends and family in attendance.

The Board next took time to honor District faculty who are retiring this year. Superintendent Dr. William Ward recognized each retiree individually, thanking them for their years of dedicated service. Among those retiring were elementary teacher Pamela Kozloski, science teacher Lucille Prendergast, technology teacher Christopher Rogine, and special education teacher Grace McColgan. This year will also see the retirement of Elementary Guidance Counselor Karen Nolan, as well as six members of the transportation department, three teacher’s assistants, and one member of the custodial staff.

The Board also announced the retirement of Christine Walters, a six year-veteran of the Board of Education, currently serving as Vice President. “It has been an honor to serve among some of the most dedicated residents in Pawling on the PCSD Board of Education,” Ms. Walters said, “and I thank my fellow board members for your compassion, patience, and tireless commitment to our schools. I’m proud that our District milestones both in and out of the classrooms have shown that Pawling Schools provide the top notch education that our community deserves, and my husband and I feel privileged to send our children to the district.”

After honoring the retirees, the Board commended the eight faculty members who have been awarded tenure. These include five teachers from across the District and one teaching assistant. Tenure was also given to Scott Rice, Director of Pupil Personnel Services, and Kim Fontana, Assistant Superintendent for Instruction.