REFLECTIONS ON THE CLOSE OF THE YEAR FROM AN 8TH GRADE STUDENT

Cosette Sullenberger is an 8th grader at Bellevue Middle School. She was kind enough to write down her thoughts and reflections on a school year that abruptly ended this Spring. It was my intention to share this on Tuesday, but y’all know how the world goes these days, so I apologize. I urge you all to read and share in her reflections and thoughts. Thank you Cosetta, for your willingness to share.

For most people, monumental memories are made in the years of middle and high school.
Even more memorable moments may be in the transitions between years, growing up to new
grades, and changing schools. One of these such transitions is the movement from the end of 8th
grade to the beginning of high school in freshman year.
Along with hundreds of other current eighth graders, I am experiencing the strange
disorientation that comes with the reality of leaving middle school behind and progressing to
high school with a sense of unfinished business. School does not always seem like something
that could be pulled out from under your feet so quickly and without warning, and it certainly
doesn’t always seem like something crucial that holds a piece of your life in balance – yet here
we are, feeling confused and set adrift from the regular world. The loss of part of our eighth-
grade experience feels drastic and sort of like a hole that we know will never be filled. It will be
difficult to compensate for that loss and find some way to simulate the momentous culmination
of middle school.
For times like these, a certain notion of closure and moving on is needed. Many people
need a way to break off the times and events of the past in order to enter the times ahead with an
open mind and a semblance of readiness, a feeling of being prepared to continue to learn and
grow in more ways than one. However, in recent times of the coronavirus many students making
this transition feel abruptly cut off and as though this closure has been refused from them. So,
how do we plan to help students facing these troubles to find a sufficient conclusion to the past
school year?
For one thing, contact from person to person is not completely cut off during this time.
Video sessions and phone calls can be used to connect people and could be used as a solution to
our problem. Possibly, appointments made with this media between students and teachers and
other school administrators to help students talk through their outlooks for high school next year
will help incoming freshmen reflect over their year and prepare for August.
Depending on Metro’s decisions for the remainder of this school year, the actions and
timing of the actions necessary for incoming freshman to take will vary – Registration, class
placement, and other preparatory steps for next year are all uncertain and probably daunting for
many. However, despite the other choices Metro might make for their students, I hope that a time
before school resumes in the fall will be designated as a time for the eighth grade of last year to
consider the events of their years in middle school and contemplate the idea of moving on with
this year behind them. Hopefully, this will assist all of us in finding the best possible mindset for
high school and the goals that will aid us in our future


Categories: Education

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