The last day of this program is always bittersweet. I witnessed too many touching moments to count today, but I would like to share just a few with you. This morning at Poly, there was an extended morning meeting. Every teacher and intern got to say goodbye to the students and impart some words of wisdom or love. Three seniors gave their "This I Believe" speeches, one of which stood out. A senior boy took the stage and delivered a speech about friendship. He described meeting another senior boy eight summers ago at Chandler, and the deep and abiding friendship they have developed over the years they have been in the Partnership! At the end of his speech, the boy's friend ran up on stage and hugged him while the entire audience cheered for them. Theirs is but one example of the relationships built through this program.
I headed over to Chandler next, where the boys were playing on a giant bounce house/water slide and having the time of their lives. The teachers were in on the fun, spraying the boys with hoses on the field. After drying off, they all settled in to watch The Lego Movie with popcorn and candy. Next I visited Westridge. I arrived in the middle of a big dance party, with all of the girls line dancing right alongside the teachers and interns. Most of them were still holding the stuffed animals they had brought for the parade! After the dancing, the girls got excited for a carnival that involved face painting, Wii dancing, Twister, and arts & crafts. Later in the afternoon they had a giant Slip N Slide and a BBQ! Over at Mayfield Junior School I arrived when there were about 30 minutes left in the movie Akeelah & The Bee. It's an inspiring and uplifting film, but I was still completely blown away by the students' reactions to the drama of the scene at the national spelling bee. They were rooting for the characters so much that they kept bursting into applause each time one of them spelled a word correctly! I have never witness such joy from a group of young people watching a film. What a great way to end the day, and to end the program. I hope all of our students enjoy some time off before heading into the school year with confidence and a commitment to doing their very best. Stay tuned here and check your mail for information about our community events throughout the year!