(Publisher’s note: Beach Middle School has been corrected as has the spelling of Dave Polley’s name.)
About 200 eighth-graders said farewell to Beach Middle School Thursday night during a special ceremony witnessed by a standing-room only crowd of their teachers, family and friends.
The Class of 2017 will go from being the top dogs at Beach to the youngest students at Chelsea High School in September.
Dave Polley, this year’s honored educator, congratulated the students on their hard work during their three years, while taking them down middle school memory lane before prepping them for their future as high school students.
He told them to be curious and ask questions, and that the best was yet to come.
Nick Beatty, vice president of the class, received a standing ovation for his farewell speech, which was comprised of song lyrics. When asked how he came up with the idea, Beatty said he wanted to do something different and creative.
Second-year principal Nick Angel said the ceremony not only recognized the past but looked to the future.
“It’s a symbolic passage from one school to the next,” he said, adding that the Class of 2017 was filled with strong personalities and strong opinions.
Class President Lee Argir, reminded his classmates about what it was like to be new sixth-graders in the school, how in seventh-grade, things got more intense as they were allowed to participate in sports, pick new electives and step it up in the musical department.
He remembered eighth-grade as being a year for trips as the students traveled to booth Greenfield Village and Washington, D.C.
Polley reminded them that nine years ago they were in kindergarten and nine years from now, they would be paying mortgages and looking at careers.
He urged them to encourage each other and know that they have support from their parents and family, teachers, coaches, mentors and club sponsors.
Following the ceremony, the eighth-graders celebrated with a special dance to end the magical evening.