Community service

Stamford Athletics honored with two CIAC awards for fair play and community service

The holiday gifts arrived a bit early for the sports department at Stamford High School in December in the form of two CIAC awards.

Stamford has received both the Michaels Achievement Cup Award 2021 and the Fred Balsamo Sportsmanship Award.

Both awards reflect the sportsmanship of the student-athletes on the field and their commitment to the community in which they operate off the field.

“It’s a big deal. We expect a lot from our students and we are proud to represent the school and the city with this award, ”said Passamano. “These awards are given under the athletic umbrella, but we involve as many students and staff as possible. It cuts across sports, but it encompasses the whole school. Fortunately, our teams and our children here in Stamford understood the need to do something for their community. You can always help people in your community and our children understand this.

This is the second year in a row that Stamford has won the Michael’s Cup.


This year, the school was honored for the work done during the annual “Pink-Out” week at the school, which raises funds for cancer research and Thanksgiving food drive, which provides meals. holidays to more than 100 families.

“We tried to adjust the culture, to make it more community-based and team-based. It is what we are trying to do, ”said Passamano. “We submitted Pink-Out and Thanksgiving, but our teams and kids are helping the community all the time. Last week our boys’ basketball team was at AME Church wrapping gifts for children in need; our women’s basketball team volunteered at Americares; our football team was unloading Christmas trees. They all care about their community.

Schools submit nominations for the award based on their sportsmanship, community service, and participation in the CIAC Class Act program. This year, 22 schools received the Michael’s Cup.

Along with Stamford, the awards went to: Academy of Aerospace and Engineering, Academy of Science and Innovation, Amity, Bethel, Bloomfield, Brookfield High School, Cheshire High School, Civic Leadership High School, Granby Memorial, Joel Barlow, Ledyard, Masuk , Metropolitan Learning Center, Lyme-Old Lyme, Newtown, Wolcott Tech, Simsbury, Stamford, The Woodstock Academy, Westbrook, Weston and Wilton.

Bloomfield, Wolcott Tech, Simsbury and Westbrook share the distinction of being honored for their sportsmanship efforts for the fifth consecutive year.

Amity, Brookfield and Cheshire are recognized with a Michaels Cup for the fourth time in five years while Barlow, Ledyard, Lyme-Old Lyme and Weston are honored for the third consecutive year.

The Michaels Cup was created in the early 1980s on the initiative of Roy Michaels, owner of Michaels Jewelry, with the aim of recognizing outstanding athletic programs.

Schools can join the CIAC’s Class Act Schools initiative, “striving to follow an established set of behavioral guidelines at sporting events and creating a student-led group to monitor and resolve issues. sportsmanship within the school “.

The Fred Balsamo Sportsmanship Award is a new award named in honor of the Connecticut Association of Athletic Directors Association (CAAD) executive director, Fred Balsamo.

The award went to Stamford, Newtown, Lyme-Old Lyme and the Capitol Region Education Council (CREC).

The Balsamo Prize is awarded to schools which demonstrate exceptional sportsmanship and provide an enjoyable experience for athletics students.

Both awards were due to be announced at the CIAC Fair Play Conference on December 7, but that event has been postponed.

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