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Principal, district resident receive Pride Awards

4/17/2014 - West Side Leader
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By Scott Kriska

Highland community member Sheryl Barnes, at left, and Sharon Elementary School Principal Connie Marzullo received Highland Pride Awards.
Photo: Scott Kriska
Highland Local Schools Superintendent Catherine Aukerman presented the annual Highland Pride Awards at the Highland Board of Education meeting April 14.

The two awards are typically given to one school employee and one Highland community member, according to district officials. They were chosen by a committee based on nominations received and in recognition of the commitment, enthusiasm and generosity they have shown to the students and the district over the years, according to district officials.

This year’s award winners are community member and volunteer Sheryl Barnes and Sharon Elementary School Principal Connie Marzullo.

Aukerman said Barnes was nominated for her service to the school district, which includes her involvement with the Sharon Elementary School and Highland Middle School Parent Teacher Organization (PTO). Aukerman said Barnes also leads Girl Scout Troop No. 91 and has raised funds to buy books for the Sharon Elementary School Library.

According to district officials, Barnes, a Copley resident, volunteers several days a week at the Sharon Elementary Library and has chaired the Sharon Elementary Read-a-Thon for the past nine years.

Barnes works as a neonatal intensive care registered nurse for MetroHealth in Cleveland, Aukerman said.

“Sharon Elementary has a very special place in my heart,” Barnes said as she accepted her award.

Aukerman said Marzullo has been an administrator in the district for 22 years, 19 of them as principal of Sharon Elementary. At last month’s meeting, the board announced Marzullo will retire following the current school year.

“Under her leadership, Sharon has consistently been one of the top schools in the area,” Aukerman said.

According to district officials, Marzullo, of Hinckley, has led committees, attended numerous school and community functions and given advice to countless students, parents and staff members. 

“Forty years ago, I chose a career that fed my soul,” Marzullo said as she accepted her award.

Following her speech, Highland Board Vice President Robert Kelly said, “Connie, you’re going to be missed like you’ll never know.”

In addition to the plaques Barnes and Marzullo received, Aukerman said they will receive a lifetime pass to any event sponsored by the district. A brief reception followed the awards ceremony.

Also at the meeting, the board approved the following items:

  • financial reports for March 2014;
  • amendments to the Fiscal Year 2014 appropriations;
  • the acceptance of an exchange student from Campinas, Brazil, for the 2014-15 school year;
  • a $1,210 donation to the Highland softball team;
  • the use of school facilities for various purposes and waiving of associated fees;
  • a service agreement with Circle Lawn Care; and
  • various personnel items.

The next board meeting is set for May 19 at 7 p.m. at the Media Center in Highland High School, 4150 Ridge Road.

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