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Stissing Mountain High School awarded for excellence on the field and in the classroom

HUDSON VALLEY —  The New York State Public High School Athletic Association  (NYSPHSAA) announced its 2021-22 Scholar-Athlete School of Distinction and School of Excellence awards winners on Aug. 3. One school from the Harlem Valley was named, with another nearby school likewise honored. The awards are meant to unite varsity coaches in challenging their teams to achieve a success in the classroom as well as on the field.

For 2021-22, Stissing Mountain Jr./Sr. High School in Pine Plains, a Section 9 school with 13 teams, was named one of 148 Schools of Excellence.

Among the 86 schools honored for in that year’s sports season, Arlington High School in nearby LaGrange earned the School of Distinction Award. Arlington is a Section 1 school with 27 sports teams.

According to NYSPHSAA Executive Director Robert Zayas, the awards shine a light students who work hard and play hard.

“The School of Excellence and School of Distinction awards highlight the best student-athletes in New York State,” Zayas stated, adding the fact that 234 member schools were honored “for their commitment to academics as well as athletics… a testament to the outstanding leadership and student-athletes we have in his state.”

Schools must apply to be selected for the honors. To be a School of Distinction, 100% of the school’s varsity teams must be awarded the Scholar-Athlete Team Award during their respective sports season. To qualify for the  School of Excellence Award, 75% of a school’s varsity teams must qualify and receive the Scholar-Athlete Team Award. 

School of Distinction winners received  a certificate and a commemorative award; School of Excellence winners were awarded a plaque.

The honors are open to schools with interschool athletic programs for grades seven through 12.

NYSPHSAA is a voluntary, nonprofit educational service organization. Members come from public, parochial and private institutions of learning.

The group strives to make way for equitable and safe competition students of member schools in New York.

NYSPHSAA held a total of 52 championship events last year. The group also governs the rules and regulations of high school sports in the state.

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