Three cheers for Hart School!
Before the Homewood-Flossmoor High School graduates celebrated as the Class of 2016 at commencement ceremonies on Sunday, those who graduated from Homewood’s James Hart School came back to remember when they were Hart School Class of 2012.
“The response was overwhelming,” said Hart Principal Scott McAlister. Hart graduates returned to their old school on Friday, May 27, for great conversation with former teachers and rounds of applause on their own successes.
“One couldn’t help but watch and listen with a huge smile as 86 students shared their plans for the future. I could not have been more pleased with how it all turned out,” the principal added.
The party was the suggestion of District 153 board member Debbie Havighorst who learned of something similar being done by another school.
“The best part about Hart? Definitely the theater program,” said Lucas Santefort. “That was probably the best moment for me.” Santefort will be attending Iowa State University.
Isabella Anderson also enjoyed the theater program and worked on the behind-the-scenes crew. Taking charge of make-up for the actors for a big deal then. Anderson will be going to Illinois State University majoring in medical laboratory sciences.
Greggareo Chambers said he didn’t have a particular liking for to math at Hart, but it now is his passion and he will major in math education at Iowa State University. He hopes to become a high school math teacher.
Santfort, Anderson, Chambers and friend Wesley Thrall agreed they had great times on the eighth grade trips to Springfield and Six Flags.
Hidemi Zoe Ihaza met up with her former teacher, Linda Barry, who taught Technology Integration. Ihaza remembered her teacher “used to push us a lot,” but the hard work paid off years later.
Through Hart’s foreign language program Ihaza started on her road to success. Her two years of Spanish at Hart got her placed into Spanish 2 at H-F. She continued on through Advanced Placement Spanish 5, has been on an excursion to Costa Rica and will major in Spanish at DePaul University.
Wesley Thrall enlisted in the U.S. Navy before graduating from H-F. He will be training in nuclear engineering. His favorite memory is the Foundation 153 walkathons. On one he was caught holding a girl’s hand and the teacher embarrassed him.
Eileen Wargo, an English/Language Arts teacher, was surrounded by girls who were James Hart poms. She coached teams for 13 years.
“For me, seventh grade was a fun year,” said Emma Anderson who will major in acting at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, “and it was because of Miss Wargo.”
“As an elementary school district we invest much time, energy and passion into working with our young students so that they are prepared to be successful as they leave us and matriculate to high school,” McAlister noted.
“It is easy to sometimes lose sight of how the very important work that we do has established the foundation for the success that our students subsequently achieve in high school, college and beyond.”