Student of the Month


Celebrating Our Award Recipients


Students at Westwood Regional Middle School may be selected by teachers as a recipient for demonstrating some or all of the following qualities: citizenship, kindness, diligence, positive attitude, academic success, personal responsibility, accountability, empathy, and character.


Hayley Adkins

February 2017

Kalya Imbriale

Haley is a considerate, respectful, and hardworking student. She is a determined student who is conscientious and gives 100% effort, whether the instruction is whole group or small group, Haley goes above and beyond the expectations set by her teachers. Her assignments are completed with care and are always thorough. Haley is cooperative when working with a partner or in a group and consistently displays a positive attitude. She possesses all the qualities of being empathetic, accountable, and successful. Haley is a great role-model for all the students at WRMS.

Kayla’s work is exemplary. She consistently works hard and demonstrates exceptional understanding of a wide variety of subjects. On the rare occasion when Kayla does not get a 100% on a task or assessment, teachers double-check their own answer keys! Kayla is always on task, attentive and strives for excellence in everything she does. She works well with others and is a constant bright light in the classroom. A quiet student, she is modest and mature and very thoughtful, but her efforts and talents are far from unnoticed. She is a model of what every teacher hopes for in a student, is an absolute pleasure to have in class, and as such is our grade seven Student of the Month for February.

Sophia DiBari

January 2017

Jack Reilly

Jack Reilly is a conscientious, hard-working seventh grade student. He is always prepared for class and wants to do his best on every assignment, test or quiz. Whenever he is absent, Jack takes the initiative to look on the teacher’s webpages to seek out any assignments he missed and will try to complete them in advance to be prepared for class when he returns. He is accountable with his work, reliable, and always completes his work on-time. Jack is also a pleasure to have in class. He is an active participant and is polite and gets along with his peers and respectful to his teachers. One of his most wonderful traits is his intrinsic motivation; he genuinely wants to learn and find success in his classes. Jack is also involved in the school community. He enjoys playing football and is a member of the Bergen All-Star team that won the National Championship in the fall. He is a great part of WRMS!

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Sophia is a hard working and determined student with an incredible work ethic and inner motivation to continually strive to be academically successful. She also has had great personal growth throughout the year. In September she began her transition into a middle school student as a shy, quiet, sometimes timid young girl who preferred to sit in the back of classroom. As we settled into the school year, she was moved to the front of the room, I’m sure to her horror. We slowly began to notice a different Sophia. We would talk during class and get an occasional smile or a quietly asked question. She began to participate and become engaged in the activities in class, and she would occasionally join teachers at lunch for extra help or to review for an upcoming test. As she became more comfortable in class, her self-confidence grew and a new Sophia emerged. She began raising her hand and participating in class; she frequently requests ASL passes to join my study sessions; she is always a participant in my before school test prep crew, and now she actually giggles in class. What I am most proud of Sophia has been watching her become a student leader within the classroom and in her lab group. Although her academic success is important, some of her best qualities are that she is kind, considerate and helpful to her fellow classmates. She is truly a wonderful example of a student who deserves the honor of being a WRMS student of the month.


Matthew Ryan

December 2016

Reese Merkel

Matthew Ryan is talented, positive, and hard-working student, and has been a true pleasure to have in class. All of his teachers will agree that his presence can light up the room and he always tries his best in every task he is given. Matthew is a talented singer who performs with the Cardinal Chorus, the select vocal ensemble at WRMS. He was also selected to perform in the cast of “High School Musical” with JPAC this spring. For Engineering, he is always one of the first students through the door at the start of class, and he uses his extra time to gather the folders, supplies, and materials for all of the other students at his table. When they walk in, everything they need for class is waiting for them at their desks. In the short time he has been at WRMS, he has already proven himself to be accountable, empathetic, and successful, and deserving of the honor of being student of the month.

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Reese Merkel is a kind, polite, and hard-working 7th grade student. She has been a true pleasure to have in class for the past two years. Reese’s mature demeanor makes her one of the most reliable and responsible students in her class. With the addition of several new students at WRMS this year, Reese was selected to pair with two of them to introduce them to the school and help them with their transition. Reese’s talents extend beyond the classroom, as she is an avid dancer and a dedicated member of the WRMS Student Ambassadors. She will often come to meetings and generate ideas to go above and beyond to help others, especially those in need. Reese exemplifies all that we would want in an accountable, empathetic, and successful member of the WRMS community.


Wakaba Yamanaka

November 2016

Sydney McKoy

Wakaba Yamanaka is a conscientious, hard-working student. She is always prepared, follows directions, completes her work with detail and care, and gives her best effort in every class. She often goes above and beyond with her work, even taking the time to craft precise images to exemplify concepts when a simple sketch will do. She is making excellent progress with her English skills this year which is evident in all her classes. Wakaba is respectful to the other students and her teachers, and is a true pleasure to have in class. Additionally, she is also a highly-skilled gymnast, and her dedication and commitment to her sport carries over to her academic endeavors. Wakaba is accountable, empathetic, and successful, and a wonderful part of the Westwood Regional Middle School community.

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Sydney McKoy is a very conscientious, respectful, positive, and enthusiastic student who always arrives to class with a smile. Daily, she exudes positive energy in the classroom and her enthusiasm is evident in everything she does. She puts forth 100% effort in every subject, so it is no wonder she excels in Spanish and well as her other classes. Sydney is friendly and helpful toward her classmates and exhibits maturity and leadership skills during both teacher and student-centered activities. There has not been a day that has gone by when she has not volunteered in class to go up to the SMARTboard or raise her hand to answer questions. She is a wonderful role model and demonstrates all of the qualities that make her a deserving winner of November's Student of the Month.

Kyla Carney

October 2016

Sean Echavarria

Kyla is a creative and astute student. She has impressed her teachers with how conscientious she is. In particular, when absent for an extended period of time, Kyla made up all of her missed work quickly and was self-motivated to ensure all of the work was completed. She was fully accountable, made appointments with her various teachers to take missed assessments, and turned in her assignments within the extra time she was permitted. Additionally, Kyla is always prepared for class and ready to participate. She remains on task and engages in classroom discussions; her responses and comments extend and further the discourse. Kyla is a polite, friendly student. She often demonstrates PBSIS behavior by being accountable, acting empathetic, and striving to be successful in all aspects of our school.

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As a new student at WRMS this year, Sean has displayed all of the attributes we look for in our students. Sean demonstrates not only a high understanding of content, but consistently shows integrity and respect among his peers and with all of his teachers. Sean’s honesty and maturity are shown through his actions and work ethic. During a recent online assessment, Sean was uncertain if his answers had been submitted. He took the quiz again and scored higher with a 100% in his second attempt. His integrity was impressive; he contacted his teacher and reported his original score. This demeanor and enthusiasm for learning allow Sean to excel and truly be more than a “student of the month.”


Michael Kazigian

September 2016

Ava Santaite

Michael Kazigian is a conscientious, hard-working seventh grade student. He is always prepared for class and wants to do his best on every assignment, test or quiz. He seeks clarification on directions or rubrics he feels is unclear, and he plans ahead to take advantage of extra help and ASL times available. He is accountable not only with his work, but also with his commitments for extra help. He is polite, helpful, a pleasure to have in class and possesses a very witty sense of humor. Michael enjoys hanging out with his friends. When Mr. Maguire, our head custodian, heard that Michael had earned this honor, he was thrilled and recalled a story of how he took it upon himself to clean up a spill to help them out. He is a great part of WRMS.

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Ava is an energetic and enthusiastic learner who participates daily in class discussions. Ava isn’t afraid to ask questions to make sure she understands an assignment. She will often help her peers and explain a concept to them. She is a kind and thoughtful student who comes to class daily with a positive attitude and a smile on her face. She is polite and respectful to both her peers and classmates. Ava is already an active participant in our school community. She has fundraised a substantial amount of money for our upcoming Color Run. She even enthusiastically dressed up in all the crazy prizes students can win to help motivate the students with raising money. Ava possesses all the qualities we look for in a student of the month; she is empathetic, accountable and successful. She is a great role model for all students at WRMS.