Duo is latest to receive Students Rock honors



Plainville High School junior Sergio Zaldivar and senior Elona Tanski were both honored with Students Rock awards on Dec. 20 at the school.

The award recognizes one male and one female student each semester who “simply do the right thing,” said PHS teacher Maria Colangelo, the event coordinator.

“This award gives me so much hope for our young adults,” said Colangelo. “It truly is an honor to work with the people who will lead our future.”

Each semester, PHS staff nominates students for the award then hold a vote to narrow it down to two winners. The students and their families are invited to the Students Rock Award recognition, where staff members have prepared statements to honor the award winners. The students also get their names engraved on the Students Rock plaque which is displayed in the showcase at the school’s entrance.

“I feel very proud to be getting this award,” said Zaldivar. “I just always look for ways to help people out.”

Tanski said she felt honored when she found out she would be recognized. “It goes to show that doing the right thing and being a generous person really pays off in the end.”

Staff members pointed to the students’ characteristics that were most notable in their considerations.

“Sergio is a respectable young man who displayed leadership skills in my class,” said Sarah Centore, physical education and life skills teacher. “He was a positive peer role model, always attentive and on task, and always performed above classroom expectations.”

Science teacher Jon Czerwinski said Zaldivar was “the type of student I hoped I would meet when I decided to become a teacher.”

And for Tanski, her art teacher and two English teachers had prepared kind messages for her.

“Elona thinks outside of the box, working out ideas throughout the creative process and takes great care in her work,” said art teacher Lena Pietri. “Difficulties are not roadblocks for Elona. She approaches them with a ‘can do’ attitude and smile.”

After the awards were presented to the two students, the entire room of faculty and staff rose for a standing ovation in celebration of their achievements.

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Plainville High School junior Sergio Zaldivar, left, and senior Elona Tanski with their Students Rock award