wsigns on fence of school yard

      Don Benito campus (Photo – Laura Hackett)

      While the Pasadena Unified continues to prepare its virtual graduation ceremonies for Seniors on June 24-26, students, parents and families of Kindergarteners, 5th graders and 8th graders in the Pasadena Unified watched and celebrated their students virtually last tonight.

      By Laura Hackett

      Heartfelt messages were sent by the principals of the students to the families.

      Jackson Elementary School

      Rita Marie Exposito, principal of Jackson Elementary delivered this message, ”I hope that the children enjoyed their last day of school with individual classroom celebrations. I want to once again congratulate the fifth grade class for their strength of character amid these difficult times. They have successfully concluded their years as elementary students and are on their way for success in middle school and beyond. I wish you and your families the very best.”

      Eugene Field Elementary School

      Daniel Wayne Bagby, principal of Field Elementary said “Well, we’ve made it to the last day of school and without a doubt, the close of the 2019-2020 academic school year will be one we all remember, perhaps for a lifetime. In reflecting on these last few months of school, I am truly amazed at the dedication and resilience I’ve seen demonstrated throughout this community. I am reminded of Margaret J. Wheatley when she said, There is no power for change greater than a community discovering what it cares about.’ With all the uncertainty around us, I remain grateful to be a part of a school community that cares deeply about the well-being of children and I’m hopeful for what the future may hold for Field Elementary School. The close of a school year is always filled with great emotions; especially as we send off our promoting 5th grade students on to middle school. Although we do not yet know what exactly the new school year will hold for students, teachers, staff and families; rest assured that we do have a caring and compassionate community ready and willing to offer love, guidance and support.”

      Altadena Arts Magnet

      Benita Scheckel, principal of Altadena Arts Magnet had a heartfelt message to share as well, she said “This year has been unprecedented. I hope tonight you can gather with your family and friends and celebrate your child and the many wonderful things we were able to accomplish in the first two thirds of the school year. The year was cut short and we know how hard you worked. We hope that there will be a time when you are in middle school and you come back to share with us your accomplishments as Cougars. Remember, once a cougar always a Cougar. You learned how to be respectful, responsible, and safe. You learned how to dance, sing, and paint. You learned how to be actors. You learned how to do amazing things. Altadena Arts Magnet is your home and will always be. Congratulations, you make us Cougar proud!”

      Don Benito Fundamental School

      In addition, students and parents showed their gratitude for the school principals, teachers and support staff. At Don Benito Elementary, the students participated in a shower of signs for the school staff. They thanked the school staff for a crazy but hard worked year. The children expressed their love and attached the signs around the school fence. They remembered all the people who helped them – therapists, aides, office staff, and custodians.  They gave a great loving goodbye to Dr. Chamberlain principal of Don Benito Elementary who retired at the close of this school year.

      Dr. Chamberlain, principal of Don Benito Elementary said that “all of your teachers are well and enjoyed working with you. They all missed seeing you and your cute little faces. They can’t wait until they can see you again! And, it is with mixed emotions that I announce my retirement at the end of this school year. I have been with PUSD for 7 years and 3 of my best years have been serving the community at Don Benito Elementary School. I want each of you to know I will miss you dearly and hope to see you again as well. Please stay safe and be well.”

      The virtual graduations, heartfelt messages, and signs show that although we cannot be physically together in the Pasadena Unified School District we are all connected as a community in our hearts.

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