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The Tony Pompelio and Schoolmates Award of Courage is probably the only award that has nothing to do with grades. More significantly, it is an award that students, and students alone, decide who receives it. Sparta High School Seniors are invited to state, in writing, who he or she believes should receive this award of courage, and why Tony’s family, based solely on these written submissions, selects the recipient. That has

been the tradition since this award was first granted thirty-five years ago in 1989.


Courage is not always measured by doing something heroic or newsworthy. Often, courage is demonstrated by ordinary people persevering, even when the odds are against them. For this award, Sparta Seniors interpret the definition of courage.


“Tony was an ordinary, average kid who had the courage to challenge us to look at ourselves and each other and maybe laugh a bit when we became too serious. If he felt strongly about something, he refused to compromise his principles and he would not be intimidated by the fear of confrontation.”


Please contact us if you are interested in nominating a student or learning more about the award.




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SHS Class of 2024 Tony Pompelio and Schoolmates Award of Courage Recipient Megan Armstrong, pictured with Richard and Ann Pompelio and Presenter Karen Scott.

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