By Paul Tennant firstname.lastname@example.org
---- — NORTH ANDOVER – The School Committee has often said it wants to promote academic achievement and last night the board honored six students who scored in the top 5 percent on the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test.
The commended students, all North Andover High seniors, are Joshua Brown, Haley Kosheff, Mia Koulopoulos, Naveen Kumar, Rachel Levantovsky and David Rose. They took the 2011 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test during their junior year.
More than 1.5 million students took the test nationwide. The six commended students from NAHS are among 34,000 students who placed in the top 5 percent, according to North Andover High Principal Carla Scuzzarella.
Before the start of last night’s meeting, some of the students said they weren’t sure why they were asked to attend. Brown admitted he gets good grades, but he said he did not know the specific reason for the invitation. Brown and his peers each received a letter of commendation from the high school and the National Merit Scholarship Corp.
“Recognizing academically talented students plays a fundamental role in the advancement of educational excellence within our nation. These young people recognized as commended students represent some of the best and brightest minds in our country as demonstrated by their outstanding performance in our highly competitive program. We sincerely hope this recognition will provide them with additional educational outlets and motivate them in their pursuit of academic achievement,” a representative of the National Merit Scholarship Corp. said.
The school system’s 27 custodians will be receiving a bit more money in their paychecks as a result of the board unanimously approving two contracts.
The first contract, covering the two fiscal years ending June 30 of this year, won’t give them any increase, but the new agreement for the three years ending June 30, 2015, grants them a 3 percent hike over the term of the contract.
School Committee member Christine Allen, who took part in what she called the “lengthy negotiations” with the custodians, said they are “motivated” to keep the schools clean and safe.
“They do a great job,” she said.
Allen also noted their numbers have been reduced over the last few years due to financial challenges.
“These guys know their schools,” she said.