Closing the book on the 2022-23 school year

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Chase Alexander

As the temperature gradually rose and countless buds sprang into action, students and staff across the Granby Public Schools eagerly awaited the conclusion of the 2022/23 school year. From field day celebrations among younger students to crammed exam review packets in the hands of high schoolers, the serene emergence of summer’s natural beauty coincided with the arguably more frantic exodus of students from another school year. Another year was nearly in the books.

On June 13, the school community gathered in the GMHS auditorium for the closing ceremonies that signify the end of the school year. For some, the closing ceremonies marked a celebration; a milestone for having achieved another successful school year. For others, the concluding rituals conducted in front of countless faculty and staff brought an end to a chapter of their lives characterized by the values and peers that define what it means to belong to the Granby community.

Throughout the ceremony, several participants alluded to just how eventful and diverse a school year is in nature. David Peling, a rising freshman student, testified to the attention paid by several administrators at Granby Memorial Middle School to personalize his middle school experience. Kelly Lane students recalled their favorite moments from the year and their accompanying hopes for next year’s classes, while perhaps the most enthralling event of the day took place in the Kindness Rap Battle performed between Mrs. LaFlamme’s fifth grade class and a group of unsuspecting teacher volunteers from throughout the district.

For this writer, the closing ceremonies held significance for a different reason. As noted by several students throughout the high school, the 2022/23 school year existed as the first true year that demonstrated a return to normalcy. Yes, it’s true that preceding school years were monumental in delivering gradual returns to what many consider a “typical high school experience.” Yet these progressive achievements culminated in a complete, restriction-free school year beginning in August of 2022, a sure reflection of the tireless work by all the teachers and administrators throughout the district. As a student, there is nothing this writer values more than the district’s continued commitment to bettering the circumstances for every student to flourish.

As the ceremonies came to an end, perhaps the most intriguing observation from the entire day may have been the shared sentiment among everyone in attendance—how people ranging from auspicious learners in primary school to established faculty members entering retirement, all demonstrated the same enthusiasm toward contributing their very best during the school year while excitedly awaiting the freedom of summer break. To this writer, who can associate with both of those feelings, a return to normalcy this year has been appreciated. And as the community enjoys its summer, it is imperative that we remember the work throughout the district that shaped the ideal climate for students and staff alike to push themselves every day and be able to celebrate their achievements in an event like the closing ceremonies.