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    Monday, August 08, 2022

    Honors for a Stonington educator

    Stonington High School guidance counselor Holly Saad, second from right, embraces senior Sandy McGugan as her sons Beckett, 4, and Hudson, 7, look on Tuesday, May 24, 2022, after Saad was surprised in the school commons with the district's Educator of the Year award. McGugan's mother, Lauren, had nominated Saad, who has been with the district for 12 years and was selected by a committee of past recipients of the award. (Sean D. Elliot/The Day)

    Stonington — A procession of school brass marched through the student commons at Stonington High School during lunch Tuesday to surprise the district's Educator of the Year with the award annoucement.

    Guidance Counselor Holly Saad turned to the booming voice of Principal Mark Friese calling for the attention of all those around as he announced the award bestowed upon her, followed by a round of applause.

    Saad, a 12-year veteran of the school, recieved bouquets of flowers presented by Friese, and her sons Beckett, 4, and Hudson, 7, and a hug and kiss from her husband, Nassim, who had known of the award since last week. "It was the hardest secret to keep," he said.

    Superintendent Van Riley read the announcement, followed by another round of applause and more hugs.

    Stonington High School guidance counselor Holly Saad hugs her sons Hudson, 7, and Beckett, 4, after being surprised in the school commons Tuesday, May 24, 2022, with the district's Educator of the Year award. (Sean D. Elliot/The Day)
    Stonington High School Principal Mark Friese, right, leads Associate Principal Alicia Dawe, center, and Assistant Superintendent Mary Anne Butler, left, through the school commons Tuesday, May 24, 2022, in search of guidance counselor Holly Saad for a surprise presentation of the district's Educator of the Year award. (Sean D. Elliot/The Day)
    Stonington High School guidance counselor Holly Saad reacts Tuesday, May 24, 2022, as Principal Mark Friese, right, and Associate Principal Alicia Dawe, second from right, announce her as the recipient of the district's Educator of the Year award in the school commons. (Sean D. Elliot/The Day)
    Colleagues, students and family members applaud Tuesday, May 24, 2022, as Stonington Public Schools Superintendent Van Riley, center, finishes reading the award of Educator of the Year to high school guidance counselor Holly Saad, standing right, in the school commons. (Sean D. Elliot/The Day)

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