Each year the day before seniors have their final checkout, they are sent off with a pep rally and a trip to Elitch’s. Each class at our school gives themselves a name that somehow relates to the year they graduate. This year’s class is the class of Famous, as in 15 minutes of fame.
The teachers get involved in the pep rally by sending them off with a dance. Each year the dance is choreographed by teachers, performed by teachers, and is laughed about with teachers. This year, because our theme is Famous, we danced dressed up like “Hollywood” and danced to songs like, “Paparazzi” and “Uptown Funk”. It’s a lot of fun and becomes a really great way for teachers to bond, if only for a moment of time.
The really special part is after the rally, though. Students and teachers alike come and give the dancers a hard time, and sometimes a compliment is thrown in here or there. Students ask for repeat performances in the hallway. Teachers talk about how brave it is to go out and make a fool of oneself.
On this day, the school bonds like no other.
Once the dance is over, the seniors leave for our local amusement park, Elitch Gardens, and the teachers make a gauntlet to see them off. There are a lot of tears, tons of hugs, and even more hopes and dreams that walk out the door with those kids. Sending off our seniors is special at my school. It shows the culmination of four years of caring, loving, and hoping.