Today, I went to my oldest son's 8th grade graduation. I was very proud of myself, and even though I felt the tears welling up a few times, I never did cry.
Ryan has had a pretty awesome 8 years in public school so far. Yes, I did say 8 not 9 - he did his 6th grade online between the end of 4th grade and the beginning of what should've been his 6th grade, but ended up being his 7th grade.
He started out in regular public school, but was given a gifted test at the end of first grade and was accepted into the gifted program part time in 2nd grade, but then full time from there after. He has had some really awesome teachers that have molded and guided him into the student he is today. As I said earlier, he began doing virtual school at then end of 4th grade as a way to keep him busy during the summer. He did so well and loved it so much, we continued throughout 5th, and by the time he was to enter into 6th grade, he had completed all the requirements for 6th grade except two classes - keyboarding, and the 6th grade social studies class. Because different counties do social studies differently, Ryan had completed 7th grade social studies. We chose to complete that online and allow him to enter 7th grade. I originally thought that it might be the end of virtual school, but Ryan decided he wanted to continue taking a few online classes a year, which gave him more elective options, and allowed for more enjoyment in school. This past year he was in 2 band classes, jazz and advanced, culinary, PE and was a teacher's assistant in the library. Sometimes it takes a little prodding to get him to complete his work, but for the most part I am truly amazed at his dedication for his studies and his profound interest in his goals and his future.
So as he enters 9th grade next year, I hope and pray that he stays on the same tract that he has been on for the last 8 years. He is full of such hope and promise, that I know he can and will succeed in high school.
Ryan, I am so proud of you!!!! You will rock high school!!!