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Loomis elementary school students to graduate June 10

Loomis Union School District says goodbye to Class of 2009
By: Joyia Emard, Loomis News Staff Writer
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Eighth-graders in the Loomis Union School District just can’t wait for graduation day. The district will promote 358 students on Wednesday, June 10, at Del Oro High School’s football stadium. A graduation dance immediately follows in the cafeteria courtyard. The excitement is palatable at the six grammar schools where students discuss the ceremony, the graduation dance and the big world of high school. Loomis Grammar School eighth-grader Judith Morgan said she bought her graduation dress in September and has been waiting all year to wear it. “I’ve been thinking about graduation day since fourth grade,” Judith said. Loomis School is in charge of the much-anticipated graduation dance and Judith’s mom, Kerry, is helping organize it. “The theme is ‘Under The Sea’ and there’ll be kelp and these clear plastic bubbles. It’s going to look great. I’m pretty excited,” she said. Some eighth-graders aren’t too ruffled by the big changes taking place in their lives. Loomis School student Theo Mathias takes it all in stride. “My dad works at Del Oro. I go there every day after school. I know my way around,” Theo said. Fellow Loomis student Ali Pryor said she looks forward to “Del Oro traditions and the black hole (the student section at home football games).” Her classmate Emily Duss said she looks forward to “everything, pretty much.” According to Carolyn Cowles, Placer Elementary School principal and graduation coordinator, the 2009 group of graduates will be the last of the large graduating classes from the district. Next year’s class is slated to have almost 60 fewer students due to declining enrollment. Franklin Elementary School and Placer will each have one less eighth-grade class. Sarena Farrington, district administrative assistant, said the numbers will pick up again when Loomis Basin Charter School graduates its first group of eighth-graders in 2013. The charter school will have two classes of grades K through 5 for the upcoming school year. Ophir Elementary School will participate in the graduation ceremonies for the first time after officially joining the district last July. Principal Mary Zaun said the students are looking forward to it, but are still keeping some of their own traditions alive during their own awards night. New principals Andy Withers, at Penryn Elementary, and Shawn Shaw, at Franklin Elementary, will celebrate their first district graduation. “They are an amazing group of students and I’m very proud to send them to Del Oro,” Withers said of his graduates. “What a fun bunch of kids. We’ve had a great year,” Shaw said. H. Clarke Powers Principal Glenn Lockwood said his eighth-grade class is the first to complete grades K through 8. “I have 21 students that started in 2000 as kindergartners when the ribbon was cut, the doors first opened and they made it to the finish line,” Lockwood said. He also pointed out that Clarke K. Powers, grandson of the school’s namesake, is a member of this graduating class. Placer principal Cowles said of her graduates, “This has been an exemplary eighth-grade class. They have great respect, camaraderie and character values. They will be future leaders at Del Oro.”