GALLIPOLIS — Guiding Hand School had its preschool transition and school-age graduation Wednesday to see a total of 10 students enter their next phase of life.
Preschool students and loved ones were greeted by Guiding Hand School Director Suzanne Eachus. After a round of “Pomp and Circumstance” was played, crowd members engaged in the “The Goodbye Song” as students were soon to leave the halls of their early childhood development and were followed by the song “Going Off to Kindergarten.”
Diplomas and certificates were presented by Eachus, as well as Superintendent Rosalie Durbin of the Gallia Board of Developmental Disabilities. Slide show presentations were given with photographs of students and staff.
Teachers Jodi Newell, Laurie Watts and Erica Leffingwell gave some parting remarks and shared experiences they had during the year with students.
Students transitioning include Jesse Arnold, Lee Cox, Franklin Eddy, Jacob Jenkins, Savannah Jenkins, Ethan Mullins and Reece Watson.
The school-age ceremony followed a few hours later with “Pomp and Circumstance” playing once more. Eachus and Durbin also presented diplomas for the graduates and faculty gave remarks about their times spent with the students. Slide show presentations were also shown of students and staff.
Austin Godwin, Dakota McCarthy and Joseph “L.J.” Shepherd graduated that day.
“I think each of our individuals are unique and each of them grow at a different pace and level,” Eachus said. “You don’t see those moments sometimes because they’re so small but when you look back, it’s like wow, this is where they started and see where they are now (in the learning process). I think it’s an overall observation over time. We have a lot of fun and learning at the same time. We really love seeing them become more independent with time.”
“I think they’ve had a really good year,” Durbin said. “The staff and students have worked well together. We had seven graduates from the preschool and three from the school-age students this year. I think the kids have really grown a lot in various ways and we have our great staff to thank for that.”
Eachus and Durbin also thanked attending parents as without them their children would not have gotten to where they are.
Dean Wright can be reached at (740) 446-2342, Ext. 2103.