Today is the last day of school for seniors. They will graduate on Monday. As the tech students have passed through the room, I've tried to think of one last thing to say to them. Something wise that they can take with them, but I haven't come up with anything yet. One asked for a hug. Another shook my hand with the most serious expression on his face. As a collective whole, we've done everything we could. They don't belong to us anymore, and all we can do is hope that they are ready. For college, for work, for whatever is next.
They remind me of the last day of school when I taught. In January, it seemed that that day would never come. By the time the last day actually arrived, I wondered where all the time had gone. Every day, the kids would line up by the door at the end of the day. Just outside the door they would split up - after-school care kids one way, walkers another, and car and bus riders with me. But on the last day, I would stand at the door to say good-bye to each of them. Most of the girls were huggers. The boys were suddenly uncomfortable and shy. Some wanted a hug, some just waved, eyes down. Someone always cried a little about leaving. Sometimes, even the teacher's eyes were a little wet.