SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Every Spring, All-City Elementary at Jane Addams celebrates its 5th graders graduating and moving onto middle school. Since COVID-19 interrupted those plans, the staff instead put on a drive-by celebration today.
Graduating from 5th grade, and moving onto middle school is a major accomplishment.
“It means a lot to these kids. They have all worked so hard. They are just high achievers, and i just truly believe so many of them are going places. They were all worth celebrating today,” Principal Jane Hannemann said.
Students lined the sidewalk in front of the school while family, friends, and teachers drove by and celebrated their big day.
“I love hearing the kid’s voices and they’re excited to be together, even at a distance,” Hannemann said.
This year’s graduation ceremony was a little different than years past.
“It’s kind of the same because when we do it, we have all the 5th graders in a line, and then all the other classes get up in a line and then walk by the 5th graders. It’s kind of the same, but it’s a little different I guess,” 5th Grader Toby Hoekman said.
But special nonetheless.
“I feel like this one was even more celebrating, like celebrating seeing each other again, and celebrating moving on to the next thing, Middle School,” 5th Grade Parent Char VanRoekel said.
As these students move on up to Middle School, their principal hopes today shows them what’s important.
“All these people showed up today, not just the 5th grade families, but everybody from kindergarten on up through 5th grade. I hope all these kids realize how important the relationships are that they’ve formed here at school,” Hannemann said.
As part of their graduation, each student was given a memory jar. Each contain written memories from all their classmates to show each student what they all mean to each other.