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A tribute to Seabeck Elementary

Amanda Clark, senior at Klahowya Secondary School, shares her past experiences as an elementary student at Seabeck for a celebration dedicated to the school’s current students. The event included a pancake breakfast for the seniors and a slideshow from when they were in the sixth grade. - Photo by Erin Beil
Amanda Clark, senior at Klahowya Secondary School, shares her past experiences as an elementary student at Seabeck for a celebration dedicated to the school’s current students. The event included a pancake breakfast for the seniors and a slideshow from when they were in the sixth grade.
— image credit: Photo by Erin Beil

It was the last celebration of its kind the school will see.

The Seabeck Elementary School gym was packed Thursday as students sat spellbound listening to the stories and experiences shared by seniors from Klahowya Secondary School of when they were there.

“This is the biggest turnout we’ve ever had,” said Lisa Pitcher, a fifth-grade teacher at Seabeck and celebration coordinator. “I think there’s an extra special feeling to it (this year) because it’s the last one.”

Beginning with a pancake breakfast, the seniors gathered in the library at Seabeck to watch their own sixth-grade slideshow, before they graduated to the seventh grade. Students giggled among each other at how young they looked, and how different the school looks now that they have grown up.

“It’s a little strange because everything seems smaller,” said KSS senior Amanda Fleck. “I run into teachers every now and then in town, it’s a little depressing to see (the school) close down.”

After breakfast, each senior was partnered with a kindergarten student to march them into the gym to “Pomp and Circumstance.” Then, teachers who had been at the school when the seniors from KSS were in their elementary years, each gave words of wisdom to the students as they prepare to embark into life after high school.

“I remember you (students) in some way or another,” said Carrie Riplinger, a library clerk at Seabeck. “I’m really proud of you all.”

Once each teacher had a chance to say something, a select group of students performed a musical number for the seniors and the rest of the elementary school students.

The most treasured part of the ceremony, each student from KSS individually recalled their experiences while at Seabeck, and something they learned from elementary school. Many told of stories that happened when they were at recess, in class, on field trips or at lunch, but most told the elementary school students they learned the true value of friendship, and to value friends from the elementary age all the way through high school.

“We wish you happiness and success,” Pitcher told the seniors. “Seabeck will always hold a special place in your heart.”

Pitcher added the importance of the seniors remembering their childhood memories and how the younger students look up to the seniors and their experiences.

“They learn so much from the older students,” Pitcher added with a smile. “It’s very important for the current children to see what happens here makes a difference when they get older.”

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