By SHERIDAN ROY
At the end of each school year, the Southington Board of Education not only celebrates the graduating class, but also says farewell to the student representatives on the board.
Two Southington High School seniors, Bianca Spataro and Nicholas Mangene, will be leaving the BOE and moving on to higher education. Spataro served as a student representative for two years; Mangene served for one year.
“Their role as student representatives is very important to us,” said BOE chair Brian Goralski. “Their role allows us to learn firsthand what goes on not only at SHS but what their experiences through school were like.”
Student representatives attend each BOE meeting and are encouraged to offer input on discussions. They also come prepared with reports of school happenings during each meeting.
“We learned these two are experts. They’ve helped us with budget items, curriculum items, and most importantly, offered a student perspective to help us teach better and safer, and as a whole, our community is better because of them,” said Goralski. “Tonight, we sadly send them off, and wish them well in college.”
Spataro looks ahead to a college experience at Smith College in Northampton, Mass. and Mangene will be attending the University of Connecticut.
“Thank you all for creating such a great environment for us to express our opinions and views and for permitting us to be here,” said Spataro. “I have truly grown so much from this opportunity. It has certainly been a positive experience for me and I will take the skills I have learned here to college and beyond.”
Mangene thanked the board, as well.
“I’ve made lasting memories and will bring this experience with me to college and use it every day,” he said. “I’m extremely appreciative for the opportunities that this has given me.”
As Spataro and Mangene move on, two new student representatives—Amrit Kaur and Brett Sheldrick—have taken their place and join Trevor Messina. Messina served as a student representative alongside Spataro and Mangene. He will be a senior in the fall and will begin his second term of service with the BOE.
Students undergo an application process, an interview and a screening process in order to be selected as student representatives.
To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Sheridan Roy, email her at SRoy@SouthingtonObserver.com