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Manteca Unified 8th graders step up
Gabrielle Pitman-Flau holds her Outstanding Social Studies Achievement award she just received during the Promotion Ceremony for Shasta School eighth graders held Tuesday evening in the Manteca High School gym. - photo by ROSE ALBANO RISSO

In the words of New Haven School Principal David O’Leary, Tuesday was the eighth graders’ “day in the sun – and wind.”

But nobody was paying any attention to the Tuesday evening weather in the rural northeast Manteca area where the school is located. The standing room only gathering of the graduates’ proud family members and friends had its collective attention on the 65 students who were being recognized during the Promotion Exercise which signified their completion of their elementary education and their next academic adventure in high school.

The outdoor ceremony was held in the school’s courtyard. On hand to congratulate the 2012 8th-graders for successfully completing the requirements for graduation was Manteca Unified School District Board of Trustee Michael Seelye.

Shasta School

Shasta School’s Promotion Exercise for its 8th grade class was held in the gym of Manteca High School. The bleachers were packed with family and friends of the Hornets’ 100 eighth graders who are moving on to greater challenges in high school in August.

The evening ceremony featured Summer Kirby, Aarron Griggs and Mariana Aguiar as the student speakers, with Alyssa Orta singing a graduation song. Academic awards were presented to the following eighth graders: Rey Anaya and Madi Seibel-Perry for Outstanding Math Achievement; Andy Anderson and Giselle Aranda for Outstanding Language Arts Achievement; Cynthia Valdez and Carlos Ramirez for Outstanding Science Achievement, Gabrielle Pitman-Flau and Juan Valdovinos for Outstanding Social Studies Achievement, and Kyle Thornburg and Hope Palomar for Overall Academic Achievement.

Additional awards were presented to Summer Kirby for Scholar Athlete, and Aarron Griggs and Maritssa De La Torre for Character Awards. Also recognized were students with 4.0 grade point averages. Don Scholl, vice president of the Manteca Unified School Board of Education, was the district official who formally accepted the promotion of the eighth graders. Shasta School Principal Audrey Green presided over the awarding of the certificates to the students being promoted to high school.

Nile Garden

The traditional Pomp and Circumstance that marked the start of the Promotion Ceremony for Nile Garden School’s eighth graders began at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday. Serenading the students being promoted to high school, the next level in their quest for education, were members of the school band and choir who performed the patriotic and sentimental musical numbers “Firework” and “Homage to America” as well as the Star-Spangled Banner. The school band also did the honors of playing the music for the processional and recessional.

The program’s featured speakers were Sam Rohovit who gave a lively talk on “Panther Purr-fect Memories,” with Arlena Gavino and Yovana Garcia jointly sharing uplifting words in their speech, “Endless Possibilities.”

Leading the flag salute was Monica Oblin, with Jordyn Posz and Emma Broderick giving the concluding remarks of the program.

Nile Garden Principal Deborah A. Noceti did the honors of presenting the Class of 2012 with Board of Trustee Wendy King handing out the certificates of promotion and awards to the eighth graders.