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What is a Sparkle Award? A Sparkle Award recognizes individuals and student groups whose support of Rochester Community School students with special needs is exemplary. Love your child's bus driver? Nominate him! Is your child's para beyond compare-a? Nominate her! Every nominee will be recognized and receive a Sparkle Award at the Special Education Appreciation Evening ceremony. In addition, one nominee from each general category (i.e., Early Childhood, Middle School, Post-High School, etc.) will receive special recognition.


Who May be Nominated? You may nominate an individual or student group who has provided service to one or more Rochester Community School students in special education this school year. Besides RCS staff you may nominate a student peer! If you would like to nominate a group of staff, please fill out a separate nomination for each individual. Group nominations are for student groups only. Please reserve the honor of a nomination for those who have gone above and beyond in their service.

ECSE team accepts Sparkle Award

2023 Sparkle Award Information

Each nominee will be recognized and receive a Sparkle Award at the Sparkle Awards Ceremony on Wednesday, April 26 at Adams High School. Due to the increasing size of this event, we will hold a staggered schedule for the evening. The Early Childhood and Elementary School categories will be held beginning at 6:30 pm. The Middle School, High School, and Post High School categories will be held beginning at 7:30 pm. An afterglow will be held in the lobby after each session. 


One nominee from each general category based on age (i.e. Early Childhood, Middle School, Post High School, etc.) will receive special recognition at the event.  In addition, the judges will choose one nominee in each general session to receive a $250 grant for classroom and/or therapy supplies.

Our digital 2022 Sparkle Book, featured below, was a big hit last year and we plan to create another this year. This digital book showcases nominations and pictures for the community. Please let us know if you are willing to share your name, nomination, and pictures for use in this book in the appropriate section of this form. We would love more pictures to be submitted this year so that our book is even more engaging and we can create a slideshow for you to enjoy at the Sparkle Awards!

Upon submission of your Sparkle nomination form, you will receive an email to access or edit your responses. Please use this feature to come back to the form until MARCH 17th to add pictures or edit your nomination in some other way. Questions? Please contact Amy Kesler at 248 -250- 1320 or

Introducing the 2022 Sparkle Book

The 2022 Sparkle Book is a compilation showcasing this year's 350 Sparkle Award nominations accompanied by photographs of those who sparkle brightest in our district. We hope that these stories brighten your day and add a little sparkle to your life, just as the nominees have brightened the lives of our special education students and families. 


Our Sparkle Book can be viewed using the digital viewer below or downloaded as an interactive PDF. 




ECSE - Donna Giles

ECSE - Libby Hoffman

ECSE - Tara Karebian

Elementary - Hendrix Hall
Elementary - Kristina Nichols-
Elementary - Kari Kocher
Elementary - Bea Savoy Ferreira
Elementary - 
Miss Vallee’s Kindergarten Class 

Middle School - Jennifer Bland
Middle School - Toni Bisaro
Middle School - Abby Pudlo

High School - Cathy Gittner
High School - Paul Bernard
High School - Peggy McKinney
High School - Melissa Perkins

Post High - Dennis McDermott
Post High - Heather
Post High - Genet Haise



ECSE - Katie Schervish, Andrea Barry, Mary Kate Dawood, Cathy Welch & Anne Fossen

ECSE - Julie Lalik

Elementary - Delta Kelly 5th Grade Students

Elementary - Beth Winters

Middle School - Jacqueline Wood

Middle School - Laure Reinke

High School - Kim Filips

High School - Rochester High School Peer Mentors


Post High - Dennis McDermott

Post High - Katie Cloos


ECSE - Laura Washer

Elementary - Nicholas Aulph

Elementary - Laura Nazione

Middle School - Heather Poirer

High School - Gavin Kaiser 

High School - Mr. DoughRay Jr.


Post High - Kristi McAllister



Elementary - Lara Cornish
Elementary - Paula Kenny

Elementary - Dr. Amanda McKay

Elementary - Alexis Schwartz

Middle School - Sadie McCutcheon

High School- Elizabeth Bulat

High School - Alicia Perkins

High School - Corinn Rittner

Post-High - Peggy Dona


ECSE - Tara Karebian

Elementary - Yumi Matsushita 

Elementary - Jane Walsh

Middle School  - Paul Diegel

High School - Reilly Herman

High School - Alissa Miller 


Post High - Amy LaPorte

Post High - Tim Leader

Post High - Dennis McDermott

Post High - Brian Retzler


ECSE - Amanda Wald 

Elementary - Laura Hartner

Elementary  - Gina Belcastro

Middle School - Haley Sornig 

High School - Kelly Harper 

High School - Nick Schram


Post High - Julie Mielnicki



Early Childhood - Debbie Zimmerman

Elementary - Dawn Blackburn

Middle School - Matthew Aboud

High School - Sarah Mueller

High School - Rawaa Kareem


Post High - Dawn Heiple


Early Childhood - Chris Sundt

Elementary - Beth Booth

Elementary - Genet Haise

Middle Schoo l- Andy Jaracz 

High School - Amy Cosentino 

High School - Aaron Mize


Post High - Amy Chamberlain

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