Many seventh and eighth grade students at Amity Middle School Orange (AMSO) submitted essays this year to shadow fifteen different local positions in the town. Above are pictured the students who had the opportunity to shadow local town government officials. The students learned about local government from Town Clerk Pat O’Sullivan and were also able to take a private tour of historical buildings in Orange Center with First Selectman Jim Zeoli.
October has come to mean Government Day in Orange and on a bright Wednesday morning, fifteen students were able to not only learn about some early events in their town’s history including its separation from Milford, but also about the founding families of the town, including the Treat and Clark families who have played pivotal roles in the Orange community. Students had an opportunity to introduce themselves to local government officials and explain why they wanted to participate in the day shadowing local leaders. They were even interviewed by the OGAT channel!
By the end of the day, students walked away with knowledge about the mil rate, tax codes, the philosophy of Orange to purchase open space and even the process of the upcoming elections. In addition, they participated in first hand experiences with town personnel.
This year, students who participated in the day included: Frank Cavallaro (police chief), Caitlyn Shanley (Town Clerk), Madison Samoncik (Assessor), Jasmina Krehic (Librarian), Spencer Stratford (Sanitarian), Mason Beaudette (Tax Collector), Alana Abrams (Fire Marshal), Adam Glassman (Town Engineer), Colleen Shaw (Building Inspector), Landon Rocchio (Registrar of Voters), Jade Krukar (Park and Rec. Director), Anna Varholak (Director of Community Services), Zoe May (Public Works – Highway Garage Crew Chief) and Aayan Chaturvedi (Director of Finance).
AMSO students were encouraged to know their local history. As First Selectman Zeoli told the students, “You have to know where you came from in order to know where you are headed.” By participating in the day’s events, students had that wonderful opportunity. Government Day is only possible because of the willingness of local town officials to support local students. The school and the town look forward to another great event next year.
Back row: Adam Glassman, Landon Rocchio, Frank Cavallaro, Mason Beaudette, Spencer Stratford, Aayan Chaturvedi Middle Row: Jade Krukar, Anna Varholak, Alana Abrams, Zoe May Front row: Jasmina Krehic, Madison Samoncik, Colleen Shaw, and Caityln Shanley
By Jennifer Marganski