Ritenour High School’s Graduating Seniors Don Caps & Gowns During One Last Stroll through their Former Schools
Thunderous cheers by younger students and former teachers celebrated graduating seniors from the Ritenour class of 2023 as they made one final emotional stroll through their former Ritenour elementary and middle schools and Ritenour High School on May 23.
But for many of the graduating seniors, the celebration wasn’t only about them. It was about their tribute to all the teachers and staff who played a role during their Ritenour journey to help them achieve success and prepare them to cross the stage on June 3.
Seniors donned their caps and gowns for the first time as they visited their elementary and middle schools and walked the halls at RHS, soaking in the cheers from younger students and giving and receiving big hugs from former teachers, office professionals and other support staff.
For senior Jayden Bock, who spent her entire career in Ritenour since preschool, seeing former teachers and classrooms now through the eyes of a soon-to-be graduate flooded her heart with wonderful memories.
“Walking through my elementary school, middle school, and high school was a very sentimental experience,” said Bock, who attended Iveland Elementary and Hoech Middle School before RHS. “I felt the love from all the Ritenour community whether I remember students and staff or not, it still was very loving. Everything became a full circle moment, realizing that these were the last times that I was going to be walking through the halls in the Ritenour School District.
Graduating senior Lewis Clay, who has been in Ritenour since first grade, was eager to give former teachers hugs at Marvin Elementary. It was an emotional day for him as he reminisced about elementary school.
“Seeing all my teachers and seeing that they are still doing for other kids what they did for me, well it’s really amazing,” said Clay. “I wouldn’t have gotten through to graduation if I didn’t have these teachers here at Marvin. They did so much to help me.”
As she approaches graduation day, Bock said she will hold onto the roots that Ritenour gave her as she prepares to go to college.
“Ritenour has given me so many opportunities and I am forever ever grateful for the school district,” said Bock. “Starting from preschool on up, I’ve created so many bonds and connections with the staff, that I will carry with me for a lifetime, and I couldn’t be more grateful for all that they have given to me. Ritenour has given me family, love, and community. Ritenour will always be my forever home.”