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Devon Forest's past, present and future show 'graditude'

Published Tuesday, May 22, 2018

graditude photo

A DFE student runs from a car to a row of soon-to-be graduates who once walked the halls of the school. (BCSD photo)

It’s arguably one of life’s most beautiful events. It’s a series of moments marking a milestone – and with it come smiles, laughter, crying faces and memories of what set the stage for life’s next series of adventures.

We’re talking about high school graduation, and as thousands of Berkeley County School District’s seniors prepare for their big day, they’re capping a series of moments with “graditude.”

Students who began their learning at Devon Forest Elementary School in Goose Creek visited the campus Tuesday morning to thank former teachers, be honored for their achievements and share their excitement with the school’s current student body.

 “We just thought it would be great to get them all back and get to see them again and wish them well,” DFE Principal Cristie Mitchum said.

Several teachers were overcome with emotion – frozen as tears glazed their cheeks. For a teacher, there isn’t much that’s more special than witnessing how the lessons from your classroom transform children into young adults ready to begin the next stage in life.

“I think seeing them (former students) walk down the hallway in their graduation outfits, in their caps and their gowns, it just really brought it back home how amazing, how wonderful they’ve done…” Mrs. Mitchum said.

This year was the first that DFE has held a “senior walk.” Administrators admitted they weren’t sure what to expect for a turnout at first.

That’s when retired teachers like Mrs. Kim Snyder got involved, reminding soon-to-be graduates of the role DFE played in their lives. Mrs. Snyder was at the school Tuesday and struggled with others to control a rollercoaster of emotions as Devon Forest’s past gave hi-fives, fist bumps and hugs to the school’s present and future.

“I wanted a chance to get to see my children,” Mrs. Snyder said. “I’ve felt so many different emotions, pride and love.  …To hear the things that are going on in their lives, is exciting to me.”

Stratford High’s Grant Domingo said reminiscing about time spent at Devon Forest Elementary was rewarding. The most rewarding part was witnessing the excitement on the faces of the children who made signs, cheered and supported the graduates as they walked the halls for a final time.

“All the elementary school kids get happy that they’re seeing graduates,” he said.

CLICK HERE to view BCSD's schedule of high school graduations.

If you are a senior or know a senior, please help us share "graditude" by using #BCSDGraditude on photos/video shared on Twitter and Instagram. We hope to share images from the past and present!

Brian Troutman