Here is the text of the Graduation Speech by , Ph.D, principal of Port Chester High school, delivered on Saturday at ceremonies for the :
Trustees of the Board of Education, Dr. Kliszus, members of the central administration, parents, graduates, and distinguished guests, welcome to John Wynne Ryan Memorial Stadium and to the 128th Commencement ceremonies of Port Chester High School. I want to first thank the custodial staff and clerical staff who have worked very hard behind the scenes preparing for this ceremony. We are grateful for their often unsung but very much appreciated contributions to today’s graduation and to our children’s education.
This afternoon, I am pleased to share that we will be awarding to the young men and women of this graduating class 220 Regents Diplomas. What that translates into is that again well more than 90% of our graduates have met all of the rigorous requirements to earn this prized distinction. Year after year, our students prove that this is a high school on the rise and that this is a high school we should all truly be proud of. On behalf of the administration, teachers, counselors, and entire staff of Port Chester High School, I extend to the Class of 2012 our warmest congratulations on your successes and your graduation today.
It is often stated at graduation ceremonies that it doesn’t really matter what any of the speakers have to say because no one will remember anything except what you came here for. And those people would probably be right. After all, what hope do I have to instill anything new in you that we haven’t already accomplished after 13 years of educating you.
I cannot hope to improve upon the lessons you learned in elementary school: to share, to be honest, to follow directions, to pay attention, to treat others with respect, and to stand up for yourself.
I cannot hope to tell you anything about yourself that you didn’t learn in the middle school: that you aren’t the only person in the world, that your actions have consequences, that judging people is foolish, that hard work pays off, that you should ask for help when you need it.
And I cannot hope to stretch any more learning into your last few minutes as high school students: For it would be futile to teach you anything more about the many subjects you have excelled in or the qualities that we have nurtured in you.
All I can do is remind you that we have provided you with a rich educational experience and done our best to help you move along from one level to the next. The steps after this will be yours to take on your own.
Seniors, I hope you always treasure the memories you have made here and the contributions you have made to our school and community. Like the graduating classes before you, your academic achievements, athletic accomplishments, outstanding performances of all kinds, and youthful liveliness have helped to make this school what it is today. I know that you will be able to look back and say with pride that you graduated from Port Chester High School. You leave us with many special memories of your time here, and we join your families in celebrating the hard work that you have invested in earning your high school diploma.
I extend my personal wishes to all of the members of the Class of 2012 for continued success in all of your future endeavors. I have enjoyed working with you, and I am very grateful for the opportunity to have served you these past four years. I wish all of you a lifetime of success and the best of good fortune in the bright, promising future that hopefully awaits you. Congratulations to all of you and thank you.