Chelsea IrizarryMay 10, 2018, 9:57 pmMay 11, 2018, 2:21 pm

‘If anyone can do it, so can I': Lindenhurst teen runs for seat on school board

The soon-to-be high school graduate was inspired to lead after demonstrating on National School Walkout Day


LINDENHURST — Elections for local school board members are next week, and this year, there are a few soon-to-be graduates running for open seats.

“If anyone can do it, so can I,” Lindenhurst High School student Gabrielle Anzalone said.

The 18-year-old will toss her cap in the air this June and officially become a graduate of Lindenhurst High School.

“The whole perspective of education has changed and we have to revolutionize it to fit today's standards,” Anzalone said.

The Long Island teen is striving to bring a new perspective to the district by running for a seat on the Lindenhurst School Board of Education.

"My main platform is bridging the generational gap between the current student body and current members of the board," Anzalone said.

Her decision to run stems from participating National School Walkout Day, a demonstration held to honor those who lost their lives in the Parkland, Florida, school shooting and to take a stand against gun violence.

"After the whole walkout event, we felt our voices weren't being heard," she said.

The district, concerned with safety, came up with other options for students to participate in the movement.

But Anzalone and others wanted to join the thousands of students across the nation, participating in the 17-minute walk out, one minute for each victim that died during the Parkland school shooting.

"There were 36 of us. We went outside for 17 minutes, and then we were suspended," she said.

The punishment was ultimately reversed due to Gov. Andrew Cuomo's request to drop any disciplinary action taken against students participating in the walkout.

Anzalone says although all have moved past the incident, it helped her realize that she wanted to lead the conversation when it comes to public education.

"There is a certainly a big learning curve. I'm always open to learning and trying my best," she said.

The senior will attend Molloy College in the fall, where she will take all honor courses.

“I'll be fine; it's all about time management in the end,” she said.

Anzalone will be running against Josephine Martino, a parent and former PTA leader at another school.

Polls open Tuesday.

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