Westchester School District 92½

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2017 Person of the Year

The Board of Education Proudly Announces the 2017 Person of the Year

The Board of Education for the Westchester Public Schools is very pleased to announce that Mrs. Laura Panuska has been named District 92½’s “Person of the Year” for 2017.  Mrs. Panuska will be honored at the annual Chamber of Commerce event, “Celebrate Westchester,” on Saturday, January 20, 2018.

Mrs. Panuska has served as the School Secretary at WMS since October 2009.  Her nominators stated, “Laura Panuska exemplifies excellence on a daily basis.  She goes above and beyond for the staff, administration and the families of WMS.  She challenges those around her to make them better professionals and leaders for our children.  The staff recognizes her support for the job she does to make WMS a warm and welcoming environment.  She is the “go-to” person for numerous staff districtwide.  She provides assistance to the district secretaries, eSchool support and was instrumental in implementing the online registration process.  Mrs. Panuska keeps the day-to-day operations in the office running like a well-oiled machine so that the building administrators can focus on students, teachers, curriculum and everything else that makes a school run.  The students know that she is the person who helps with their needs and go to her when they are sick, need support, or have a problem.  When you ask Laura what the most important part of her job is, she will always respond, ‘The children.  It is all about the children.’”  

For her commitment to excellence, we are pleased to honor Mrs. Laura Panuska with the District 92½ "Person of the Year" Award for 2017.  Please join the Board of Education in extending congratulations to Mrs. Panuska.

We are also pleased to share with you that Mrs. Barbara Lappe (1st Grade Teacher at WPS), Mr. Otis Randle (Board Member), Mr. Philip Salemi (Superintendent), Mrs. Ricki Schlau (1st Grade Teacher at WPS), and Mrs. Lisa Weber (4th Grade Teacher at WIS) were nominated and considered by the Board of Education for the “Person of the Year” award.  We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to Mrs. Lappe, Mr. Randle, Mr. Salemi, Mrs. Schlau, and Mrs. Weber for all that they have contributed to our schools.  People working together on behalf of the district’s students are what make the Westchester Public Schools a special place to work and learn.








Pictured from left to right:  Superintendent Phil Salemi, WMS Health Clerk Karen Litwin, Board President Donald Slager, 2017 Person of the Year Laura Panuska, WMS Principal Greg Leban, and WMS Assistant Principal Nate Molby.