The 2017-2018 school year at Santa Maria High School has ushered in a new way to celebrate the achievements of students from all grade levels. Each season, teachers nominate students they believe have demonstrated exemplary skills in various activities such as sports or involvement in the classroom. Once each nomination has been made, the teachers vote on the candidates, choosing four students from each grade level. These students are invited to a special lunch celebration in the MMLC, and are encouraged to invite one teacher or staff member that has been their greatest influencer. Students are recognized with an award detailing their great honor. This great award gives validation to each student that their hard work and dedication to their craft is not going unnoticed. To join this exclusive group of sixteen students indeed takes unwavering dedication, and the winners are a direct reflection of their own success.
Introduced by Mrs. Martinez, the Saint of the Season honor was first awarded in the fall of 2017, again to sixteen students. This was the first time an award of this caliber had been awarded at Santa Maria High School, and saw a great turnout of students, teachers, and parents. For the winter season, the result was no different. Mrs. Martinez addressed the parents present and thanked them for their service to their child, saying, “[Your child] wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for you doing your due diligence to make sure that they were excellent students.” To the teachers, Mrs. Martinez also relayed a similar message, saying, “The students chose you to be with them, and that is such an honor because they had over 250 educators to choose from.” The rest of the celebration carried on with the awards being presented to each student, starting with the four freshman winners, and ending with the final four senior winners. Finally, the celebration was concluded with cake and special goodies for the students. Throughout the time, parents and teachers shared conversations about the students present, giving teachers the unique ability to explain to parents why the student was chosen and how the student has shown excellence inside and outside of the classroom. The Saint of the Season gathering was another successful activity that has certainly proven to benefit both students and teachers.
As the winter season concludes, Saints and teachers look forward to the next season and how the Saint of the Spring celebration will take place. Students work even harder to prepare for the last push toward the end of the year, and teachers keep their eyes on the students they feel have demonstrated the great excellence that Saints have proven to show each year. With each new coming season, one thing is certain: Saints and teachers of all grade levels will have the opportunity to be honored for their great achievements.