Our Eighth Grade class breathed a collective sigh of relief on Friday, May 29 with the completion of their Graduate at Graduation Panel Presentations. This rite of passage is something these students have been working toward since they started school at Saint Patrick. Over the course of their 8th Grade year, students were challenged to look back and, with honest self-discernment, write an essay about their growth in The Life of Mind, The Life of Spirit, The Life of Vocation, The Life of Relationship, and The Physical Life. To help them remember all the way back to when they were Wolfhound pups, they were able to use their Journey Portfolios, a collection of schoolwork, photographs, awards, and reflections that the students have gathered since kindergarten. Using their essays as a guide, the students then created an oral presentation to give to a panel of adults made up of parents, teachers, board members, community members, and alumni. One student acknowledged the challenge this way, "How do I sum up 10 years in 10 minutes?" Well, this student, and his classmates, rose to the challenge and spoke with eloquence, confidence, and honesty about their triumphs and struggles.
This year the Panel Presentations looked different than years past – they were given over Zoom or presented in-person utilizing our new Outdoor Classroom utilizing safe social distancing. Construction of the Outdoor Classroom was completed last month, so this was the first time our students were able to use this space. And, in another first for Saint Patrick, we had an international panel presentation. One of our Eighth Grade students returned home to Colombia at the start of the pandemic and presented via Zoom from Bogota. Congratulations to all off of our amazing Eighth Grade students for a job well done!