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WMS Class of 2024 Moves Up

WMS Class of 2024 Moves Up

Mr. Mungioli said it perfectly as he welcomed students, faculty, Board of Education members, and families to the 2024 Moving Up, “The weather is perfect and today is an amazing day.” 

He thanked his colleagues for their leadership and praised the Board, the WMS office and custodial staff and Westlake’s partner organizations including specifically the Education Foundation for its unwavering support and funding and the PTA for bringing “organized chaos” to the school in the very best ways. Mr. Mungioli also recognized the retiring members of the Westlake Middle School family, Honoring retirees Dawn McFarland, Donna Murphy, Susan Cowles-Dumitru, and Lorrie Villalba. He then invited his 8th graders to face the crowd and give all those who have supported them along the way a huge round of applause.

Dr. G took the podium and said, “As a result of your good work, teachers and staff, we are gathered today to celebrate these fine Wildcats! Students, three years ago together we arrived at Westlake campus ready to take on the world and today I am filled with hope.”

He told a story of a parent and child chasing the northern lights. He reflected on the questions and feelings associated with seeing the aurora borealis. He likened peering into those magical lights to looking ahead to high school. He advised his rising 9th graders to enter high school with curiosity and open minds, to prioritize discovery, and embrace opportunities. He said “It will lead you to great things. Carry with you wonder, awe and belief that good things are possible. Congratulations WMS class of 2024 and WHS class of 2028.”

Eighth grade student representatives Alexandra and Desi spoke beautifully to the crowd. Alexandra said “We have matured into confident young adults. We know we are prepared. We made friends, joined clubs and sports and took chances. Westlake has become our second home; We’ve got this!”

Desi told his classmates, “We know we are headed to high school next year. The next time we stand on this field together that will not be the case! We will be asking ourselves where do I want to be in the future, what will my job be, how will I get there…I wish us luck in this new phase of life! Thank you to our teachers and families that will help us get to where we are meant to be.”

“Good morning 8th grade. I want to start by saying you’ve got this!” Mr. Mungioli was the final speaker of the event. 

“I get to meet you in 6th grade and get to watch each of you figure out who you’ll become on your journey toward young adulthood. You don’t even realize how much you’ve changed. What has not changed is something that was evident from way back in 6th grade, you are a grade that understands investments and commitment. Your parents and the school community invested in you and we saw quickly that it would be worth it. You responded to challenges by committing to do better. I saw throughout this year that you’re not little kids anymore. You have mastered the art of the possible. I have watched you take something you can barely see in your mind and make it real. Continue making your vision and picture bright and bold. We can’t wait to see what you accomplish, WMS class of 2024!

View a Slideshow of the MS Moving Up Ceremony