Jason Leslie is the Principal at Matthew McNair Secondary School in Richmond, BC.
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
We Will Always Remember
Last Friday, J.N. Burnett Secondary School put on our Remembrance Day ceremony. A teacher committee, led by Mr. Marco Soriano, put together an extremely poignant program that left all who observed proud and reflective while also inspired to make a positive difference. Student performers did an exceptional job of showing how the sacrifices of many have led to the privileges we enjoy living in Canada today.
Students entered the gym walking past beautiful artwork that adorned the walls, created and displayed by Ms. Kirsten Taylor's Art 9-12 classes. The program began with Mr. Soriano's Drama students emerging from the audience while the Concert Band, under the direction of Ms. Sue Freeman, played A Bach Minuet. This cued a processional of Cadets, who carried in the British Columbian and Canadian flags.
Students then stood for the singing of O Canada, led by student, Ronny Au, who was accompanied by the Concert Band. Following O Canada, the Drama students performed a movement piece that paid tribute to fallen soldiers and ended with the statement, "Dulce et Decorum Est".
Amanda Fielding and Mrs. Lisa Zuccolo, accompanied by William Yao, then performed a stirring rendition of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah. This was followed by our Masters of Ceremony, Roydon Desouza and Moses Caliboso reading a short poem about why we continue to celebrate Remembrance Day. They then introduced a special guest, Master Bombadier Ms. Heather Walker, who performed the Last Post and Reveille. Following the Moment of Silence, the school Glee Club performed a magnificent version of Taylor Swift's Safe and Sound.
The ceremony ended with a powerful and inspiring video put together by Mrs. Cristina Carvalheiro (see below). The video showed an appreciation for the efforts of those who have served, but also gave an uplifting reminder of what we can all do to make the world a better place.
Thank you to the performers and planners of such a beautiful ceremony. I was moved beyond words and incredibly proud to be Canadian and a part of the Burnett community. It was a day to remember, both for the sacrifices made by those who have served and for the efforts of our students and staff in showing our appreciation. Lest we forget.