Carmel High School Students Honored for Biliteracy Achievements

At the recent Board of Education meeting, the district recognized this year’s Seal of Biliteracy recipients from Carmel High School. 

The Seal of Biliteracy is an award given to students that have proven an intermediate high level of language proficiency in French, Italian or Spanish, in addition to English.  

Biliteracy Award students

“It is a big award that acknowledges our amazingly dedicated students,” said Kaleigh Thomas, World Language Department chair. “This was our fourth year, and the best year yet!” 

In order to qualify for the honor, students chose a cultural topic that they researched throughout the year, entirely in their target language. The project required them to conduct interviews, create and analyze surveys, write essays and journal entries, record videos and more. At the conclusion of the project, each student formally presented and defended their project to a panel of judges – entirely in the target language.  

The Seal of Biliteracy project is challenging,” said Thomas. “Add in the fact that they started this project after two years of pandemic schooling and learning. We are so proud that we had 16 recipients this year.” 

Presentation topics this year ranged from music, art, and fashion to crime, environmental issues, and women’s and LGBTQ+ rights. Each presentation was entirely different and unique to each student.  

This year’s Seal of Biliteracy Award recipients: 

  • Jerry Alonzo (Spanish) 
  • Keerthi Atluri (Spanish) 
  • Leila Bahssain (French) 
  • Robert Beanland (Italian) 
  • Francesco Bojorquez (Italian) 
  • Peyton Capolino (Italian) 
  • Gabriela Carneiro (Spanish) 
  • Julia Diorio (French) 
  • Sofia Harrison (French) 
  • Adriana Mastrangelo (Italian) 
  • Jake Montana (Spanish) 
  • Kathleen O'Sullivan (Spanish) 
  • Molly Radigan (Spanish) 
  • Julie Repanti (French) 
  • Sofia Sanchez (French) 
  • Gabrielle Santangelo (Spanish) 

“Congratulations to the students who received the Seal of Biliteracy,” said Lauren Santabarbara, principal of Carmel High School. “This is our highest number of recipients yet, and I am so proud and grateful to the World Language Department who put so many hours into this program. I was able to be present during some of the students' presentations in the past and their command of the target language is outstanding. Congratulations, again, to our Carmel High School students.”