Celebrations Abound at BOE Meeting

Celebrations Abound at BOE Meeting  thumbnail143066
In what was truly a night of recognition and celebration, the Smithtown Central School District recognized the contributions of students, staff and even local workers who were available in a pinch during a special circumstance during the monthly board of education meeting on Nov. 12.

On Nov. 1, Director of Facilities Dan Leddy had to call PSEG because a nearby fallen tree caused Mt. Pleasant Elementary School to lose power. PSEG quickly scrambled a four-person crew to help.

 “These are true professionals,” said Interim Superintendent of Schools Russell Stewart. “This was a teachable moment for all of our children. To have something authentic like that right there in front of them was very valuable.”

John O’Connell, vice president of transmission and distribution, PSEG Long Island, said, “PSEG Long Island is committed to providing reliable power. We work every day to improve and maintain the electric grid. Thank you to Mr. Stewart and the Board of Education for acknowledging our team of line workers. We are proud of our employees. They work hard to provide customers with excellent customer service.”

This was followed by a presentation of two Unsung Hero awards, which were given by Smithtown Elementary School Principal Janine Lavery and Accompsett Middle School Principal Paul McNeil. Lavery handed an award to Pat Chiello, a head custodian at Smithtown Elementary School. 

“This is a wonderful opportunity for us to congratulate and celebrate Mr. Pat Chiello,” Lavery said. “He works tirelessly to do everything he can to make Smithtown Elementary an amazing place.”

Mr. McNeil then commended Annette Sammut, who for the past 27 years served as a secondary duty aide in the district. 

“She’s unwavering in her dedication to the school,” McNeil said. “She’s a leader in her efforts to support and serve others, and that’s something that really sets her apart.” 

Director of Fine Arts Michael Mastrangelo congratulated the district’s All-State music students. Accompsett Elementary School Principal Bryan Frank spotlighted some special high school students who brought the First Tea Golf Program to his building. The students said they plan to expand to other buildings, as St. James Elementary School is next on their list. 

The meeting also highlighted two athletes. Patrick Smith, the coordinator of physical education, athletics, health and nurses, spotlighted two special tennis players, an unlikely duo of senior Anya Konopka and seventh grader Lauren Schiraldi, who have earned All-State honors in addition to becoming very close off the court as well.