The Wheatley School celebrates Class of 2021

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By Ethan Marshall

 

The Wheatley School held its graduation ceremony for the class of 2021 on a beautiful Sunday morning.

In the latest sign of a return to normalcy after the COVID-19 pandemic, the ceremony took place outside the school with a large gathering of friends, family, faculty and the 147 graduates. It was fitting that the ceremony coincided with Father’s Day, which made a great present for dads seeing their children graduate from high school.

East Williston, where the Wheatley School is located, is one of only three school districts on Long Island that were open for students during the school year starting in September. Students and faculty underwent constant health screenings, wore masks each day and followed social distancing protocols in order to ensure safety.

Wheatley School Principal Dr. Sean C. Feeney spoke about how proud he was of the students doing their best to keep themselves and others safe while also expressing relief at the pandemic’s finally coming to an end.

“It’s simply wonderful to see faces I had not seen in full in over 15 months,” Dr. Feeney said. “Celebrate today. You’ve earned this occasion and certainly deserve it!”

The ceremony also included musical performances by several graduating students. Alexandra Levine sang the “Star-Spangled Banner;” a student musical group, “Take Two,” comprised of Nadeem Al-Okla, Benjamin Gilbert, Shruti Goyal, Aarushi Jain, Frederick Lin, Ari Mizhiritsky and Neil Shah, performed a cover of the song “Good Old Days” by Macklemore and Kaileigh Fiorillo; and Eric Ness performed a cover of “The Climb,” originally written by Jessi Alexander and Jon Mabe and performed by Miley Cyrus.

Additionally, Class President Manav Bansal, Sarah Hassan and Huda Ayaz spoke to their fellow graduates, with the latter two reading essays they wrote about their high school experiences.

10 COMMENTS

  1. The behavior of both the parents and the school was disgusting. Wheatley School should have been proud of having educated a student who could speak to world problems rather than the usual fluff that counts as graduation speech. And the parents…I can’t imagine the wolf pack that faced this young woman. I am proud to say I stand with her!

  2. As an educator, tolerance and acceptance of others should be one of first things taught at your school. We demand justice for Huda!

  3. youngsters should be encouraged to do their own research and have their own independent opinion on world issues rather than spoon feeding them a version of the big lobbies

  4. Congratulations to the class of 2021. You graduated in a time of uncertainty with remote learning. So happy to see that the world is starting to go back to normal. The speech that Huda gave was nothing inflammatory, these are facts that are laid out by the UN. What type of example is the principal and the school district setting by trying to muzzle free speech? The speech was given in advance, if the principal didn’t review it properly that is on him.

    Shame on the parents who made islamophobic remarks and even a bigger shame on the district that is not standing with their student. The principal is taking a cowardice stand by trying to deflect and blame a kid instead of taking responsibility for his own approval of the speech.

    In 2021 her speech shouldn’t have been controversial. We all need to stand together for the human race regardless of their race, religion or creed.

    #standwithuda

  5. The mere ignorant people who were bullying and mad a hell at the young talented and genius girl delivering her speech on graduation day should bury their heads in sand. She spoke the truth and exercise the freedom of speech.We the people of conscience stand with her and support her.

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