By Lalig J. Musserian
LEXINGTON, Mass.—With skips and jumps, the student “bunnies” sauntered on the stage and began to hop around to kick off the Armenian Sisters’ Academy’s (ASA) hantes, which is always such a delight to the parents and grandparents gathered. The hantes has a new theme every year and for the 2008-09 academic year, it was a celebration of the four seasons.
After the students sang the uplifting Armenian and American national anthems, the program began with a delightful group of dancers, bunnies, butterflies, and other costumed kindergarten and nursery students dancing and prancing on the stage, while a big screen monitor provided close-ups of their faces and outfits. There were group and individual solo songs, followed by dancing and poetry recitals, with memorable renditions of “Mayrig,” “Yerevani Seeron Aghchig” and “Eem Yerpouni.” The students also performed many dances, including the lively music of Siroosho’s “Kele Kele,” while dressed in traditional Armenian costumes from the school’s costume collection.
Sister Cecile Keghiayan, principal, and Mayda Melkonian, the newly appointed vice principal, remarked on the school’s academic achievements and plans for the new school year ahead, including the reorganization of the Advisory Board, which will be providing strategic planning and undertaking other initiatives to continue growing and guiding the school. The graduates of the 8th grade presented Sister Cecile with a beautifully inscribed plaque to commemorate their years at the Academy and to thank the school for its commitment and dedication to their education.
Since the Armenian Sisters’ Academy is a preschool, elementary, and middle school, graduation ceremonies and scholastic awards followed for the 16 graduates of the 8th grade and kindergarten. Lucy Mesrobian and Aaron Campbell received the Presidental Academic Excellence Award. The Academic Achievement Award recipient was Andranik Bagdassarian, whereas the Armenian Language Award by the ARS “Lola Sassouni” and “Shoushi” Chapters was granted to Lucy Mesrobian. The graduates also received a souvenir from ASA.
Six of our students were winners of the ARS EUSA essay contest, which involved all of the Armenian schools on the East Coast. The prizes are distributed according to grade levels. Students winning prizes for their Armenian-language essays were Lucy Mesrobian (1st prize) and Andranik Bagdasarian (3rd) from the 8th grade; and Kayane Paravian (1st) from the 6th and 7th grade groups. Among the 3rd and 4th grade groups of the English-language essays, Anthony Rivera, Andrew Donabedian, and Sanjana Puri won the 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes, respectively.
The graduates of the 8th grade read essays they had authored to capture their feelings and experiences during their years at the ASA. And while their proud parents watched and sometimes cried, the pride and spirit of the students and the applause from the alumni in the audience was heartwarming.
At the end of the ceremony, Sister Cecile honored the teachers and staff for their dedication and hard work throughout the 2008-09 academic year.
While Armenian Sisters’ Academy may not be the largest private school in the region, the accomplishments and the way in which the school prepares its students are by no means small. The student-teacher ratios, and the individual attention each student receives in this environment is second to none. In addition, the school facilities, the grounds, and the location of the school are conducive to a strong learning environment without any outside distractions. Graduating students have continued their high school studies in such distinguished schools as the Belmont Hill School, Xavier Academy, Boston College High School, Lexington Christian Academy, Arlington Catholic, Matignon, Bishop Fenwick, and many others. The commendations and the demonstrated successes of the graduates speak volumes about how ASA students are groomed for success.
For more information, call (781) 861-8303 or email [email protected]. The school has an open-door policy for all parents and prospective parents.