Eighth Graders Celebrate Moving Up to High School

Eighth Graders Celebrate Moving Up to High School
Syntax NY

Eighth graders celebrated an important milestone in their academic careers during a moving-up ceremony before an audience of friends, family and administrators on the school’s front lawn on June 18.

The students heard remarks from Principal Joe Mercora, as well as select student representatives – Annie Jaquette, Cullen Krause, Memsy McCarthy and Logan Siegel – who addressed their classmates and reflected on their experiences in middle school.

In her address, Jaquette expressed pride in her classmates’ accomplishments and her belief in the potential of the Class of 2028 to continue to achieve great things. She recalled challenges and growth she experienced and the importance of learning from mistakes. She also described that her classmates have embodied the Bronxville Promise through various activities and experiences and she felt confident they were ready to continue to make a positive impact in high school.

“I’ve learned that sometimes it’s okay to not be the best at something, it’s okay to make mistakes,” Jaquette said. “It’s all going to give you more opportunities to grow and improve as a person. There were many obstacles that me and everyone else beside me had to overcome – tough tests, tough subjects and more. I realize that everyone here has had a different experience, but I can guarantee that every person on these steps has become a much harder worker, greater team player, and overall, a more well-rounded person.”

During his speech, Krause praised his middle school teachers and staff for showing him kindness and compassion and believing in him, and reflected on the profound impact his principal, Mercora, has made on his life with his positive, encouraging and understanding outlook.

“The Bronxville School is a community where kids are nurtured from kindergarten through graduation,” Krause said. “In a lot of ways, school and, in particular, this school, is all about the kids. But it works because it has a community of teachers, parents and administrators who work their hardest to make sure kids get through these toughest years with humor and grace. We have so much to look forward to with high school in our future.”

In her speech, McCarthy thanked everyone for their support as they transition to high school, reflected on the lessons learned and emphasized the importance of making connections and being kind to everyone. She shared memorable experiences from middle school, including the Boston trip and playing school sports, expressed gratitude for her time at Bronxville and looked forward to making new memories in high school.

“I especially learned that in life you have to learn to find your own path,” McCarthy said.  “I’m not saying don’t follow your teacher, coaches or parents’ rules and advice, but you have to make your own choices, or you’ll never be happy. I learned this from my parents because they always told me to be a leader, not a follower, and with this idea you can accomplish a lot.”

In his remarks, Siegel reflected on what he learned throughout his middle school years, including working with his teachers, accepting challenges and learning from mistakes. He recalled the experience of playing with the high school band and joining a program to share his knowledge and experience with incoming middle school students.

“Mr. Mercora calls middle school a bridge, a connection between elementary school and high school,” Siegel said. “On this journey, we discovered who we are and found our voices in the world. Through our music, arts and sports, we found the courage to take risks and hone our skills… I know that everyone on these steps has crossed their own bridge filled with accomplishments and challenges, and I know that we are prepared to cross the next one.”

In a heartfelt address to the graduating middle school students and their families, Principal Mercora reflected on the eighth graders’ journey and achievements. He highlighted the success of the PBIS Program’s “thank you” theme, involving a kindness contest, reminisced about cherished moments with the students, praised their legacy of innovation and emphasized that middle school is a transformative bridge to high school. In his speech, he also encouraged the students to embrace growth, kindness and respect, and urged them to continue being innovators and leaders, fulfilling the Bronxville Promise.

“I am in amazement of how much you have grown and how you have become such amazing students and people,” Mercora said. “I know there is no limit to your potential, and I look forward to hearing about and seeing all of the amazing things you will accomplish in high school.”

Signifying the conclusion of one chapter and the beginning of another, the students were called one by one to accept their certificates. They will embark on the next phase of their educational journey as high school freshmen in the fall.