Last month, Sassarini Elementary School selected fifth-graders Guadalupe Gutierrez and Mason Cox as the school’s Students of the Year.

A student at Sassarini since kindergarten, Gutierrez was chosen by the Sassarini faculty and staff because she exemplifies Student of the Year qualities at all times. She is a leader both inside and outside the classroom. She is described by the staff as “kind, mature, conscientious, helpful and compassionate.” She is known for always thinking of others and never missing an opportunity for deeper understanding. Friends and teachers appreciate her sense of humor, her curiosity and her empathy. Gutierrez said that her favorite subjects are social studies and history and she loves music. After the school day is over, she usually stays to participate in the after-school Boys & Girls Club program at Sassarini. Outside of school, she enjoys playing with her cousins. She looks forward to attending Altimira Middle School next year.

Since coming to Sassarini in kindergarten, Student of the Year Cox is described by his teachers as modest and humble, despite the fact that he exhibits numerous strengths and talents inside and outside the classroom. He is known to be reliable and responsible and to take his schoolwork seriously. He takes pride in being a Sassarini Seahawk and he has a broad group of friends.

One teacher said, “What stands out most when thinking about Mason is his integrity. Mason can always be counted on to do the right thing, regardless of the choices of others around him. This is a lifeskill that will carry him far and ensure his success in life whatever his path.” Outside of school, Cox loves basketball and soccer and playing outside with friends. He also looks forward to attending Altimira next year.

Congratulations to these hard-working and inspiring young students on this honor and to their families and teachers for encouraging their academic and personal success.

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This article is the fifth in a series that profiles each Student of the Year honored in Sonoma.