Congrats to the PS1 Class of 2018! As is tradition, PS1's Graduation ceremony included a speech from the Head of School to each Grad, and a speech from each Grad to the community. The ceremony also featured a commencement address by a PS1 parent, whose 18-year tenure at PS1 is coming to a close (see excerpt below). The event was moving, poignant, witty, wise, and joyful. We thank the families and students of the Class of 2018 and wish them well on their next adventures as they head off to 14 different middle schools!
An excerpt of the Commencement Address by Richard Gabriel, PS1 Parent:
Our children are our superheroes, and they will save the world. Their superpowers are their compassion, their curiosity, their challenge, and their cooperation. We need these powers now more than ever for our country, our culture, and our planet.
It is easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of our busy lives - the helter skelter of work, sports teams, classes, and tutors. It is easy to get caught up in the ambitious cycle of achievement – the right grades, the right school, the right career, the right job, the right car, and the right house. We have smartphones, but they don't make us smart. We have a universe of information and data literally at our fingertips. But information/data are different than comprehension. Comprehension is different than knowledge. And knowledge is different than wisdom. You only get to wisdom by knowing who you are and the meaning of what you see, hear, and feel. For meaning, questions are often more important than answers, creativity more valuable than content, and empathy more worthwhile than ambition.
This school will always be your school, your community, and your home. You will come back. I have seen it. You will sit in the yard under the big oak and listen to that joyous kid cacophony. And you will remember. The songs at circle times, the 'smores on camping trips, pajama days, bake sales, the smiles of your teachers. And the man with the mustache.
You have your final leaf. May you always hear the rustling of leaves of the oak and let that sound bring you back to yourself.