Graduating third graders from Sickles School made the transition to incoming fourth graders at Knollwood School, in a ceremonial ride to their new school on June 11. Then on June 18, a separate ceremony marked the transition of Knollwood’s Class of 2015 to the next freshman class at Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School.
From press materials furnished by Fair Haven School District
The Fair Haven School District celebrates the “transition” of students from third grade at Viola L. Sickles School into fourth grade at Knollwood School in a big way. Held on the afternoon of June 11, this year’s Transition Day saw teachers and students from Viola L. Sickles School cheering from the sidelines on Willow Street, as the third graders began their journey on bicycles and the big red trolley. Escorted by members of the Fair Haven School District staff and administration, as well as eighth-grade Peer Leaders, the students headed toward Knollwood School on Hance Avenue. They were greeted along the way by many well-wishers holding signs and shouting encouragement.
At the grades 4-8 Knollwood School, the third graders were given a tour by the eighth grade Peer Leaders, learned about the school’s music program, and attended a brief assembly hosted by Principal Kevin Davis, who remarked that “It’s always so much fun to greet the incoming students at Sickles School and bring them over to Knollwood.”
Then in a separate ceremony on the evening of June 18, the graduating Knollwood School eighth graders marked their own transition to the next stage of their education career — as incoming freshmen at Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School.
During the ceremony at the RFH auditorium, inspiring “I Believe” statements were shared by many of the students, and the Class of 2015 delighted the audience with a beautiful performance of the song “Breakaway,” directed by Knollwood School Choral Director Vince Mottern.
Diplomas were presented to 111 graduates, who returned to Knollwood School after commencement to take part in an enduring tradition: the walk back to Sickles School, where many of them began their grade-school education. Well-wishers lined the streets as the students made their way to the Graduation Dance at Sickles School Auditorium, magically transformed into a cruise ship deck thanks to the hard work of parent volunteers led by Decorating Committee Co-Chairs Danielle Gasperini and Maria Mitterando.
In his address to the Class of 2015, Fair Haven Superintendent of Schools Nelson Ribon reflected on Stokes State Forest in the spring of 2013; describing it as “an amazing learning experience disguised as a four-day fun camping trip with all of your friends…schoolmates, parents, and teachers.”
“This is where I believe your particular group turned the corner as a class and started on the path to maturity and preparedness for your next journey into high school … I enjoyed watching you make friends, become better friends, and truly appreciate the small things in life that make the biggest difference,” he said. “Whether it was tactics, mountain hike, ravine, canoes, survival, or cleaning the ‘white house,’ you became even better people and learned from experiences that most children your age do not get the privilege to have.”
Students were recognized with the following Awards for special achievements –
- The Bud Dupree Volunteer Award – Emma DeSantis
- Daughters of the American Revolution (D.A.R.) Citizenship Award – Nicholas Glassman and Nicolette Kuras
- Dr. Patricia B. Campbell Outstanding Artist Award – Evan Davis
- Dorothea Degano Music Award – Quinn Nolan and Lucas Tucker
- Nancy Field Collier Music Award – Andrew Phelan and Noah Sullivan
- Living the Writerly Life Award – Grace Katich
- John L. Measley Physical Education Award – Jacqueline Hanson and Luke Reid
- World Language Award/Spanish – Shaanti Choi-Bose
- World Language Award/French – Sarah Finley
- Historical Association of Fair Haven, Inc. – Olivia Rehder
- Michael Mekenian Science Awards – Isabella Mitterando and Nicholas Moscardelli
- F.H.E.A. Award for Academic Excellence – Grace Saad
- Superintendent’s Outstanding Student Award – Lucas Tucker