The sounds of cheers and car horns could be heard within a block radius of Wishart Elementary on Wednesday morning as staff said goodbye to students at a drive-by farewell.
“Though some students returned to our classrooms for the final few weeks, a lot of them have studied from home,” said Wishart principal Ruchi McArthur. “We miss them and this is a way to send them off for what we hope will be a great summer.”
McArthur said the drive-by event is just another way of showing the community how grateful they are for their support during an “upheaval” of a year. Former principal and beloved community member Scott Manning died of cancer in February. Only a month later, all SD62 schools would be closed due to the pandemic.
SD62 welcomed back 23 per cent of their overall elementary population, 15 per cent of students at the middle school level and five per cent of their secondary students for in-person support at the beginning of June.
Grade 3 teacher Michelle Bevan was one of the first staff members to propose the idea of setting up the drive-by. She clutched her heart-shaped sign towards the road as cars beeped and students waved back at her.
“We were trying to learn the ukulele when the pandemic closed the schools,” said music teacher Giles Borland, who recently transferred to Wishart. “It’s been amazing to see my students and I hope we’ll be able to get back to learning music in the fall.”