Students, Veteran, Board Members Honored in East Meadow

 Students, Veteran, Board Members Honored in East Meadow Photo

Recognitions and accolades abounded on May 25 as the district’s Board of Education acknowledged outstanding students, administrators, fellow Board members and community members during its communication meeting.

Throughout the evening, the Woodland Middle School vocal jazz ensemble, Meadowbrook Elementary School choir and advanced band, and George McVey Elementary School chamber orchestra performed for the Board members, administrators, faculty and community residents in attendance. 

Kicking off the recognitions, Board President Marcee Rubinstein presented Superintendent of Schools Leon J. Campo and Board Vice President Joseph Danenza with certificates of appreciation for their tireless efforts and ongoing commitment to advancing the success of the district. 

The evening proceeded with Cindy Munter, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, and Kathryn Behr, Director of Music and Art, receiving the School District Partner of the Year Award from the Tilles Center for the Performing Arts. Since 2013, the district has set records for attendance at the center by bringing nearly 5,000 students to to see world-class performances in dance, theater and art. The district has also established Enrichment Through the Arts, a powerful early childhood art literacy program, through the close collaboration of Munter, Behr and the Tilles Center. This program gives all district kindergartners an opportunity to explore the arts through teacher-artist visits, theater performances and field trips. 

Acknowledging three years of partnership, Stephanie Turner, Director of Education and Outreach at the Tilles Center, said, “East Meadow is a district that understands that incorporating the arts into teaching and learning is a valuable practice. The arts have the power to make us sympathetic, aware and sensitive to the world around us.”

The attention then turned to veteran Angelo Auletta, who was presented with the Distinguished Service Award by Campo and the Board for his bravery and devoted service to the U.S. during World War II. 

“It is a privilege to recognize individuals who served our country,” said Campo. “All of us are here today because of those who sacrificed to protect our freedoms.”

Following, Robert Schoen, Area 11 Director of the New York State School Boards Association, presented Danenza with the Board Lifetime Achievement Award, NYSSBA’s highest recognition for a Board member. Schoen also bestowed Rubinstein and trustee Brian O’Flaherty with the Board Mastery Award. All three members received these honors for continually striving to expand their knowledge and skills for better board governance by earning credit through NYSSBA training opportunities.

Concluding the evening, students in grades 6-8 were honored as the May and June “Terrific Kids,” in accordance with the East Meadow Kiwanis-sponsored program that recognizes sixth- through eighth-graders who continuously improve as individuals, students and community leaders. Certificates of recognition were presented by the Board, W.T. Clarke Middle School Assistant Principal Linda Lynch and Woodland Middle School Principal James Lethbridge. 

“We are very proud of our Terrific Kids recipients,” said Campo. “They are role models who set an example for others, and who will be the leaders of tomorrow.”