From left are Emily Peralta, Michael Roccograndi, Simon Ratzenbeck and Ryan Graffius.

PENNSBURY >> Four district students were honored with character awards at the December meeting of the Pennsbury School Board.

Pastor Vicky Allen, representing Pennsbury LYFT, and director of student services Beth Aldridge were on hand to present the awards, which come with a certificate of recognition and a cash prize provided by the First United Methodist Church of Fairless Hills.

In conjunction with the District’s ongoing character education initiative, students at the elementary, middle, and high school levels are spotlighted each month during the school year for possessing positive character assets.

The honorees for December - Michael Roccograndi, Simon Ratzenbeck, Ryan Graffius and Emily Peralta

Michael Roccograndi - were singled out for exemplifying the trait of fairness and sportsmanship.

Roccograndi, a 7th grader from Charles Boehm Middle School, was nominated by Team 7B.

According to the team, Michael embodies fairness and sportsmanship and steps up to the plate when it comes to group work or competition in the classroom.

“He is sure to fully welcome any classmate into his group and make him or her feel like a valuable member of the team,” they said.

On the soccer field, Michael leads by example and even in defeat keeps the thoughts and feelings of his teammates and opponents in the forefront of his mind.

“Michael’s overall commitment to fairness makes him someone his family, teachers, and classmates can count on each and every day,” said the team.

Ryan Graffius, an 11th grader from Pennsbury High School, is the winner at the high school level.

Ryan was nominated by Lori Trickelwho shared that Ryan goes out of his way to include students who otherwise might not engage in activities.

“He is fair, fun and shows great sportsmanship in games and activities in the gym,” said Trickel.

“During basketball, Ryan consistently tries to include a particular peer, who helps with socializing and making friends,” she said.

At the elementary school level, the award went to Emily Peralt, a 5th grader at Afton Elementary School. She was nominated by Louise Hopkins, Craig Vandermark, Kristin Slota, Evon Moyle, Trish Baesher, Katie Bolger and Lori Gougher. They say that Emily is “a gem of a student in class and is able to work with any classmate.

“She exemplifies sportsmanship and fairness by being a leader, without showing off,” they said.

In SPARK class Emily “is a great sport, willing to be patient zero in an infection simulation. During PE, she gives the perfect combination of effort during games and compassion for others in her class.”

Also recognized at the elementary level was Simon Ratzenbeck, a 2ndgrader at Eleanor Roosevelt Elementary School. Simon was nominated by Mrs. Davisand Mrs. Dryzga.

“Simon is a very active boy who always listens and tries his best,” said his teachers. “He loves to play games and to win, but always makes sure that his classmates play by the rules.”

During games, Simon encourages his peers to try their best and when ap game is over, he always finds the other players and tells them “good game.”

“Simon also shows fairness daily in the classroom, displaying tolerance and approachability for others’ learning needs,” they said.

LYFT, an acronym that stands for Lower Makefield, Yardley, Falls and Tullytown, is a volunteer community coalition made up of individuals from all parts of the community to support and strengthen the youth and families of the Pennsbury School District.

Its mission is to create a more positive community environment where youth are safe and can thrive by working to reduce the risks that confront youth such as bullying, drug and alcohol abuse, mental health issues, school violence and delinquency. The coalition also provides support for parents and recognizes students who demonstrate positive character.

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