PHS seniors earn praise, ‘Students Rock’ recognition

PHS seniors earn praise, ‘Students Rock’ recognition

Plainville High School’s Tianna Durham and Benjamin Royce are the recipients of the first semester Students Rock Award recognizing their outstanding contributions to PHS.

“The Students Rock Award is one of the most prestigious and, in my opinion, best awards a student can earn at PHS. It recognizes the impact these students have had on our school culture. Both of the students honored this semester embody what we hope for from all of our Blue Devils at PHS,” Plainville High School Principal Carl Johnson said.

Durham, a senior, was nominated by Plainville High School staff members Stephanie Aresco, Rachel Posner, Lori Johnson and Emily Wasley.

“Tianna Durham is such an exceptional young lady! I’ve had the honor of having Tianna in class this year in our Developmental Child Psychology course and what a great addition she has made!,” Aresco stated in her nomination. “She is consistently engaged, excited, and truly hungry to learn. She has exemplified what it means to be a kind and caring friend to her peers and always works her hardest on every assignment she is given. She is beyond deserving of this award!”

Royce, also a senior, was nominated by PHS staff members Steven Michaud, TJ Riccardo, Jill Miller, Kerry Patterson and Jenn Jambard. 

“Ben’s consistency in the classroom is most impressive. He is really interested in the learning process and becoming a better student. He has the desire to improve himself and the ability to achieve whatever goal to which he puts forth effort,” Michaud stated in his nomination.

“A great example of this trait could be seen in his progress in my Accounting class this year,” Michaud continued. “He is always fully participating in all of our class activities, whether it is taking class notes, answering a lecture question, or working on a problem. Ben can always be counted on to be on time, on task, and ready to learn. He is also highly respected by both the faculty and his peers. His positive energy and pleasant personality make him an easy choice for the Student Rocks Award at Plainville High School. Ben is the type of  student that this award was created for … a great student who only adds to our school community. It is my pleasure to recommend him.”

The Students Rock Award was established in 2010 as a way to honor students who “do the right thing” every day without looking for acknowledgement.

Once a semester, teachers nominate and then vote for one male and one female student they believe are worthy of this award. The students are honored, along with their family members and guests, at a staff meeting where they are awarded a book and presented the Students Rock plaque where their names are engraved. The plaque, which is displayed in the school’s awards showcase, reads: “awarded to students who assume responsibility for their positive contributions to the school and community.”

Durham and Royce were honored virtually on Jan. 27, during a PHS faculty meeting.

PHS faculty member and Students Rock program co-coordinator Eileen Hebert said, “I feel privileged to help carry on the legacy of the Students Rock program that was started by Maria Colangelo, now a retired faculty member. I have been fortunate enough to have both Tianna and Ben as students in my classroom. They truly are amazing and add such positive energy to our school each day.”

PHS faculty member and Student Rocks program co-coordinator Mikayla Wells echoed Hebert’s sentiment. “I am honored to have partnered with Eileen to continue the Students Rock Award. It is students like Ben and Tianna that make me excited to go to work at PHS,” she said. “They make our school better, and I have no doubt that they will soon make the world a better place.”

Superintendent of Schools Steven LePage said Durham and Royce ”are wonderful examples of the positive qualities and attributes that we hope all students will exhibit and develop during their years in our Plainville Community Schools.”

The superintendent added, “In a time where we are seeking positive role models for our upcoming generation of children, these individuals and this recognition is most timely and important.”

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