Graduation day – snippets

Today was exhilarating and heartbreaking and left me with a much deeper appreciation of single parents.  Jesse and Josie both graduated from their respective schools today. 

Jesse is leaving Jones Spanish Immersion to become a middle schooler at Aycock next year.  Josie finished her three years at Aycock and is moving on to Grimsley High School next year.  Both of their awards ceremonies were concurrent and Jinni and I wanted to be everywhere all at the same time, but what happened was we weren’t able to witness all of either one of their very important events.  At least not together.

We both attended the 8:30 processional at Jones and hung around to see Jesse get his Presidential Fitness award about 45 minutes in, but then we had to head to Bryan Park’s auditorium (in separate cars) to see the Aycock 8th graders arrive at 9:30.  We both hoped to stay and see Josie recieve a highly coveted school-wide recognition for overall excellence that one of her teachers let us know she would be getting, but Jinni had to get back to Jones around 10:30 to see Jesse receive his graduation certificate – which she ultimately missed.

When the time for Josie’s award came, I called Jinni and held the phone up so she could hear the accolades that were heaped upon our daughter.  Earlier, Josie also recieved the award as Aycock’s Female Athelete of the Year (I think playing football helped).  Jesse scored a surprise upset by landing the most improved Social Studies Student Award (which we both missed).  All in all we need a trophy case to handle the hardware and certificates our kids (including Jack, who had tests all day) have carted home over the years.  

A side note:  Aycock’s principal, William Price, did not attend the Aycock graduation and I thought that was in very bad form.  The teachers noticed too, and many were not pleased with his absence.  I was told William was attending a “job fair”.  It is my understanding that this “job fair” was to recruit new teachers to Guilford County schools.  If true, someone did some very bad planning on when to hold such an event.  Teachers, and especially the principal, should be with their students on the second to last day of school, and most certainly they should be with their charges during graduation.  (Update:  William responds in the comments below)

If a single parent had been in our position today, he/she would have had to choose which child’s ceremony to attend because there was no physical way to be in both venues when the action was occuring.  If that same single parent was without independent transportation, such as our city’s bus system, the span of distance (12 miles) between Jones Elementary and Bryan Park would have been impossible for them to traverse.  I hate the reality of this, both for the lone parent and especially his/her affected children.

All in all though it was a great day filled with sadness and joy, as milestone days often are.  My puppies are transforming themselves into bigdogs.  It is not easy to watch but gratifying just the same. 

All three of our children give us great pride and joy.  If you don’t know them, you should.

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