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Bayview grads move on

"As graduate Venessa Cleary tries to pay attention to guest speaker Jim Freeman at Thursday's Bayview High School commencement, her daughter, Destiny, looks at a small diploma given to her by school staff. Graduate R.J. Erickson, right, is just as curious to see what is on the diploma.Matt Johnson / staff photoConfident that their students are ready to join the adult world, teachers from Bayview High School kindly and gently showed the school's 13 graduates the door Thursday afternoon.With more than 50 friends, parents, and family members watching, as well as members of the South Whidbey School District's Board of Education, the Bayview class of 2001 was sent off to learn and do the work for which their teachers have prepared them. School administrator Diane Moondancer said that in leaving the school, the graduates were heading into a world filled with more possibilities than she and the Bayview teachers could offer in the confines of their small school house.We're here to celebrate the closing of one door and the opening of another, Moondancer said.During the ceremony, each student stood in front of the gathered well-wishers at Bayview Hall as their teachers said a few words about their time at the school. Teacher Scott Mauk spoke at length about graduate Stephanie Linclau, who spent almost her entire high school career at Bayview. Mauk said the defining period of Linclau's education came in 1999 when she decided to go back to school at South Whidbey High School. Linclau returned to Bayview mid-semester.I knew she'd be back, Mauk said with a laugh.The day she returned to the school, Linclau and the other Bayview students traveled to Seattle to observe the WTO protests. Mauk said the event was an awakening for Linclau.Not everything the teachers said about their students was complimentary. While talking about Rebecca Smith, Jean Shaw said Smith was often crabby and uncooperative at school. But she worked through those feelings and graduated with both the necessary credits and the respect of her teachers.Shaw said Smith wanted her to talk about both the good and the bad of her time at Bayview.She wouldn't want anyone to think she was perfect, she said. Perhaps the most touching moment during the ceremony came when Bayview staff members gave a child-sized diploma to graduate Venessa Cleary's 2-year-old daughter, Destiny. The little girl spent some time looking at the diploma while sitting on her mother's lap.After receiving their diplomas from South Whidbey schools Superintendent Martin Laster, the graduates held a small graduation party in Bayview Hall. "

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