My son's 8th-grade graduation is upon us. He will officially be a high school student this coming Friday evening. I have a hard time believing that he is 14 and about to embark on a new educational adventure. Life flies by in the blink of an eye.
One thing that I have endeavored to accomplish is to spend as much time as I can with my son. Doing things together. We have gone camping, hiking, backpacking and even out to play Airsoft together. For me, this is a big deal. Up until the moment that I lost my Dad at the age of 53, I always assumed that I would have plenty of time to spend with him. I was just 21 when my Dad passed away. I regret many of the choices that resulted in me not spending time with him.
That is why I do what I have to do to make sure that my son has plenty of memories of us together, enjoying the bond of father and son. He knows that I will be there for him. About 2 years ago, one of his friends wanted to give a Harry Potter wand to a friend of his. Well, Joseph told him that I could make it in my shop, no problem. I did a double-take when he told me, but I wasn't about to let my little buddy down. My Dad always taught us a can-do attitude. So I got to work and made a wand. Have to say it looked pretty good once I was done.
These are the things I want him to always remember and pass down to his children someday.
So, back to the graduation. It will be this Friday and then that chapter of his education will be done. He will be going to Aquinas High School and entering the Engineering Academy there. It took me by surprise that he wanted to be in the Academy. Because of COVID and mistakes made during the administration of the entrance exam, the scores did not reflect who he was academic. I had to advocate for him and make sure his classes were what he needed. Being that he was in honors math and English in junior high, it made little sense that he would enter high school assigned to algebra A (entry-level) and Earth Science (also entry-level). These classes would prohibit him from entering the academy. So, that was a no-go situation.
I had to make several phone calls, but once I reached the principal we came up with a workable solution. He will be going to summer school and taking math and English. The math teacher will assess his abilities and place him at a more appropriate level of math (the same will happen with English). The principal did place him in Biology. So 3 weeks of summer school and he will cement his placement in the academy. I don't doubt that he will get into the academy. He is smart and loves to tinker with his computer and the code on his games.
This week will be a whirlwind of activities for the graduates. Tonight is the final school dance for them. Thursday is the prayer service, the 7th grade hosted reception, and then a beach trip. Friday, they have all day to relax and reflect on their journey so far. That evening is the graduation mass and ceremony.
Still hard to believe it's here.
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