Students celebrate end of year

New York Elementary kindergartner Bishop Jackovich soaks in the last day of school with a final go around on the playground bars on Thursday, May 24, 2012. New York students celebrated the end of the school year with a cookout prepared by the Lawrence Breakfast Optimists and lunch and an opportunity to eat lunch in the school yard.

The students at New York School won’t miss math, homework or having to be quiet. But they will miss gym class, recess, friends and teachers over the summer.

On Thursday the school celebrated the last day of school with a cookout lunch provided by the Lawrence Breakfast Optimist Club.

“This is awesome; we get to eat outside,” Tristan Chavez yelled as he ran from the lunch line.

Tristan plans to spend his summer at the pool, but he says he will miss gym class.

“It was great. I had a fun time,” Tristan said of the school year.

The Lawrence Breakfast Optimist Club, the school’s LEAP partner, hoped to start a new last day of school tradition by grilling 100 hot dogs and 200 hamburgers for the students.

LEAP stands for Lawrence Education Achievement Partners.

“It’s nice to do something like this at the end of the year,” club president Don Johnson said.

As they ate, students shared their plans for the summer and reflected on their school year.

“I’m kind of excited and sad,” first-grader Morgan Mendoza said of the beginning of summer. “I’m excited to stay home for the summer and sad because I’m going to miss all my favorite friends and teachers.”

Fourth-grader Katy Meston-Ward also will miss her friends. But there is definitely one thing she won’t miss.

“Being asked to be quiet all the time,” she said. “I like to talk a lot.”

Her classmate Cameron Krause said she would miss her teacher, Mr. Bode, but not math class.

“I’m happy that school is almost over,” she said.

The students aren’t the only ones ready for summer to start.

“I’m always excited for the end of the school year. It lets you look back on what you have accomplished and you get to feel good about it,” Principal Nancy DeGarmo said.

DeGarmo, who plans to spend the summer with her grandchildren, said she won’t miss all the administrative meetings, but will miss her students.

“I really miss the kids after about two weeks,” she said. “They are what keeps your motor going. Being around kids, you can’t help but be energized.”