Bright sunshine, blue skies, a sea of colorful tropical leis, a few grass skirts, and smiles aplenty greeted members of the Class of 2024 during the JGMS Moving On Parade celebration on Monday, June 15. JGMS principal, Kevin Tracey, with faculty members sporting tropical attire and leis lined the parade circle to greet the students who arrived masked and in decorated vehicles, both vintage and new. The atmosphere was festive and observed social distancing. Students were presented with their certificates, class gifts, and took advantage of a photo op with Principal Tracey and a colorful tropical backdrop.
Following the parade, Principal Tracey still attired in his Hawaiian shirt and lei presided over a virtual Class of 2024 Awards Ceremony. Moving On students and families were present via Zoom and others were invited to watch the live Bedford TV coverage. The National Anthem was presented by the Eighth Grade chorus led by Amy Budka and accompanied by Thomas Griffin. After welcoming everyone, Tracey took an opportunity to thank and acknowledge the many individuals (parents, JGMS faculty and staff,
Bedford school administrators, Davis and Lane teachers, and Bedford community members) who have supported the students throughout their educational experience and especially during this Covid-19 period of distance learning.
A Message from Mr. Tracey
Tracey’s message to the class was personal and heartfelt. “To the 8th grade Class of 2024: I miss you so much and am so proud of you. While the focus of our Luau today was on you, just seeing the students, families and my staff celebrating today made us all happy at the end of a year when we really need a reason to smile more.
“I refuse to minimize you by the nicknames of the COVID class or the Quarantined Tweens. In my eyes, you truly are an amazing, resilient, loyal, and talented group of young ladies and gentlemen. You have dealt with loss and confusion better than we could have imagined, but it still really hurts and resonates. From missing spring season athletics to the musical to the concerts to Canobie Lake to just learning and being together to our typical Moving On celebration, these wonderful rites of passage of middle school were taken from you. As I reflected about this class in particular, I began thinking of all of the little moments we missed from conversations at lockers and in the cafeteria to laughs shared in classrooms or advisory. And, yes. I do really miss even lunches. As a class, you will always stand out to me. Not because of the disruption, but because of whom I have found you to be over these past three years at JGMS. You are caring, kind, and inclusive. You can be a little crazy, but fun with a solid core of values and an impenetrable loyalty to others and to what is right. In the words of your teachers and staff who know you best:
“This Class of 2024 is tough. Ms. Mangini cites that it is filled with so many wonderful, hard-working, and kind students. Ms. Little declares that this class has kept her on her toes, but in all of the best ways. You question the status-quo, challenge the norms, and will not settle for a “that’s how it’s always been done” kind of answer. Echoed time and time again as I spoke to teachers and counselors about you, they shared funny anecdotes and stories, touching empathetic moments of a class that has grown together and in short, we all agree that as a group, you are one in which we will not soon forget. You are outstanding individuals and a collective force. One that has unlimited potential and is destined to bring about positive change. We wish for you all of the luck, happiness, and success in your future endeavors. And remember, we are always here if you need us.”
Four members of the class, Cate Galante, Julie Ke, Daniel Bendersky, and Healy Weisman were invited to share their personal thoughts, memories, and messages for the class.
Presentation of Awards
Tracey announced the following awards noting that “They are not only for a demonstration of academic prowess in a discipline. Their meaning goes far deeper. When deciding upon who receives subject area honors, my staff look to contribution – what has this child brought to the class that exemplifies passion, commitment, and a joy of learning. In our eyes, these children have consistently demonstrated these qualities and we wish for them to be acknowledged.”
- Excellence in Math: Andrew Lum, Caroline Liu, Angelina Vinh, Anthony Randazzo
- Excellence in English: Jackie Cutrona, Ethan Kaufman, Ada Cooprider, Paul Caruso
- Excellence in Civics: Healy Weisman, Ethan Martinage, Evan Kelly, Samantha Nappi
- Excellence in Science: Akira Ung, Samantha Sheahan, Pranay Shah, Caroline Liu
- Excellence in World Language: Evan Kelly, Bridget Sheahan, Christina Kolak, Elena Protasowicki
- Excellence in Reading: Camdyn Shoesmith
- Excellence in Art: Madalena Mola, Christina Kolak
- Excellence in Performance Arts: Hayden McAllister, Ben Sedran
- Excellence in Technology: Samantha Nappi, Andrew Lum
- Excellence in Physical Education/Health: Samantha Sheahan, Elena Protasowicki
- Principal’s Award: Christian Brickman, Cate Galante
- Citizenship Award – Silver: Ryan McWalter, Madison DiPerna
- Citizenship Award – Green: Rachael Hsu, Joe Patterson
- Geography Bee Winner: Zayd Qureshi
- Project 351 Representative: Harrison Sachs
“The JGMS Principal’s award is given to a student who exemplifies the attributes described in HEART. The student is honorable in that he/she always behaves in a manner that displays respect and integrity. Empathetic–reflects upon and tries to understand the feelings of others. Accepting–of all individuals and groups regardless of our differences. Responsible for their own actions, the well-being of others, our environment, and our community, and tenacious, displaying determination and grit when faced with adversity. This year marks the eighth year of many a JGMS student who will be given this distinction. As always, I found it unusually tough to decide on this year’s award recipient with so many deserving students from the Class of 2024. In turn, I chose two. I can do that–I am the principal!” explained Tracey.
Christian Brickman: Ms. Greenspan calls this student, “amazing” and always appreciated his courage to be a teacher and to help others. A number of staff said that this student can light up a room, adding positive vibes wherever he goes. When in conversation with a friend or an adult, this young man genuinely seems interested in how you are doing. A selfless and empathetic trait not normally associated with middle school. Ms. Beinert describes him as authentic and true to himself. He steps up to help and befriend others regardless of race, disability, social group, or status. He refuses to quit or let a team down as evidenced by his work in Tenacity this year. Mr. Nagle remarks, he is a born cheerleader and truly revels in the success of others. In the classroom, he is the student who will take the risk to speak first when others are hesitant. He does not do this to get his voice heard, but to break the ice and welcome others to take the same risk. Having this young man as a member of a classroom, a team, a committee, or just as a friend is a gift. I will only add that he will be dearly missed around the halls and classrooms of JGMS, but I have no doubt that his giving and humble nature, his strong values, and his tenacious work ethic will lead to success at BHS and in his future.
Cate Galante: According to my staff, this student is someone everyone wants on their team and in their class. She’s easy-going, but assertive, creative, and talented, unusually empathetic- a colleague commented that she can read every micro-expression on the faces of her peers and is quick to be an ally or companion when she knows a classmate may be struggling. Ms. Beinert is amazed with this student’s remarkable ability to see the good in anyone, her optimistic and cheerful personality balanced with a fierce determination and independence to dig in and get the job done in support of others. Ms. Mangini also uses the word “fierce”, but in reference to her sense of humor and her advocacy for what is right, adding “always done in a respectful way”. Ms. Little describes this student as “all in”, she dances into rooms, literally, and sprinkles joy everywhere she goes. Ms. Budka adds that she owns the stage and her talent and presence are motivating to all around her. I will only add. You deserve the accolades even though I know you may not be one who always relishes in being singled out. Your kindness, your acceptance of others, and your dedication to your classmates has made a real difference and is felt by me and all those around you. Please keep being you. We wish you luck at BHS next year.
Moving On ~ Congratulations to each member of the Class of 2024
Tracey closed the evening encouraging the audience to “Please give one more round of applause for our Moving On 8th graders, the BHS Class of 2024:
“Arielle Adams, Malak Alden, Giani Alvarez De La Cruz, Taylor Anderson, Gabriel Arakawa, Shae Arsenault, Darian Aviles, Kaylee Axtell, Jameson Baer, Bryan Bai, Thomas Barney, Andre Bell, Daniel Bendersky, Maya Billings, Germain Blanchette-Payne, Catalina Blando, Millie Bonneau, Ryan Bray, Christian Brickman, Oren Brosgol, Layla Brown, Justice Buchannan, Paul Caruso, Chase Chapman, Jacob Choi, Maureen Coffey, Matthew Colasante, Owen Coltran, Cameron Comeau, Pedro (Aledam) Contreras Rosario, Ada Cooprider, Nelson Crawford, Jacqueline Cutrona, Julia Dacayanan, Emmett Daley, Ava Derderian, Madison DiPerna, Mateo Doan, Josephina Donnelly, Kenneth Doucet, Michael (Misha) Drench, Charlotte Dreyfus, Sawyer Elliott, Robert Etringer, Tobias Favalora, Renby Fernald, Clare Fitzgerald, Lily Fonseca, Jose Fontanez, Cate Galante, Arnav Garg, Jonathan Garraway, Ann Girifalco, Domenic Giusti, Alejandro Gonzalez, Jeremy Gu, Noah Hamner, Tyler Hardy, Micah Harfield, Benjamin Harris, Faith Herlihy, Miles Herzog, Aidan Higson, Christian Hill, Grace Holland, Rachael Hsu, Margaree Hybl, Jireh Joseph, Ethan Kauffman, Jasleen Kaur, Julia Ke, Aidan Kelly, Evan Kelly, Daniel Kenny, Hamdan Khan, Nathan Kim, Corinna Klein, Rebecca Kohler, Christina Kolak, Ryan Kranz, Ricardo LaBoy, Damien Lackland, Lillian Leavell-Coldwell, Yeayoung Lee, Justin Liberman, Britton Lippe, Caroline Liu, Elizabeth Lovy, Andrew Lum, Dylan Lykins, Russell (Rusty) MacDonald, Emma Mandell, Isabella Martin, Ethan Martinage, Vincent Mascia, Caleb Mathew, Reyna Matrona, Alexander Mattson, Hayden McAllister, Anna McEachern, Ryan McWalter, Laney Mead, Riya Methratta, Jakob Mikhaylov, Allison Miller, Michaela Minott, Madalena Mola, Carlos (Max) Morales Gomez, Ava Morales, Cassie Morrison, Sean Morrison, Siddarth Nandakishore, Samantha Nappi, Victoria Naticchioni, Karen Navon, James Naylor, Anthony O’Brien, Lydia O’Neil, Kaylin Ortiz, Gianna Ostiguy, Eshan Pandey, Rita Pasquale, Joseph Patterson, Gabriel Paula, John Pearson, Francesca Pellegrino, Maya Pillai, Brenna Portlock, Elena Protasowicki, Zayd Qureshi, Julian Raho, Anthony Randazzo, Daniel Randhahn, Carter Rauch, Diego Reyes, Midrelina Rodriguez, Ajeya Ruffin, Xavier Ruiz, Aleksandr Ryabinkin, Nikolas Ryabinkin, Harrison Sachs, Carolyn Salem, Jonathan Sandler, John Sarno, Benjamin Sedran, Elton Sequeira, Kaylyn Sethakosee, Pranay Shah, Bridget Sheahan, Samantha Sheahan, Zachary Shen, Elena Sheth, Camdyn Shoesmith, Adeline Silva, Adrian Soto, Matsen Spirn, Alexia Stathakis, Klara Stevens, Jane Stewart, Blake Stuzynski, Michael Sullivan, Meghan Tassinari, Mackenzie Tierney, Madison Tierney, Ryan Touri, Ava Tulimieri, Akira Ung, Julian Van Praagh, Angelina Vinh, Marco Vitti, Sophia Vitti, Angelina Voong, Healy Weisman, Mason Wiggins, Sebastian Woolnough, Ezgi Yener, Jocelyn Young, Maya Young, Alex Zhang, Samuel Zhao, Cameron Zhu, Emily Zhu, and Thomas Zildjian.”
Finally .. .. ..
“Enjoy this summer and celebrate,” concluded Tracey. “You deserve it like no other class I have ever had either as a teacher or a principal.
“As we close, an enormous thank you to Lisa Kaushik and Jessica Fair, my MSPA co-presidents, our MSPA board, and their army of parent volunteers who have helped support this class over the past three years. One more thank you to my incredible staff, whom I credit for leading all of the important work we do at JGMS for the sake of kids. Last, but not least, students, please take the time to thank staff members who have supported you along the way. Congratulations! May you all be safe and well. Class of 2024 rules!”
You could almost hear the distant audience members cheering and nodding in agreement with Tracey’s remarks and good wishes for the Class of 2024.
Watch the 2020 JGMS Award Presentations, thanks to Bedford TV