Year: 1995 – 1996
Place: Lockhart – Kirwan Terrace Elementary
Final Year in Elementary School – Yay!!
The school year had just started. We were in our final year of elementary school. I already had my seat where I wanted it. I didn’t mind the classmate sitting next to me. My teacher wasn’t too bad either. (Love you Mrs. Thomas) I knew most of my classmates throughout my years at Lockhart. All was well with the world.
Then Marilyn happened.
Hurricane Louis came through and we were okay. Marilyn however wasn’t having any of it. Our entire school was gone, just like that.
After the Storm…..
After things settled and school was ready to resume, my elementary school, where I had laughed, cried, fell in a puddle of mud, and loved was no longer a viable option for us to go to school in our senior year. Epic blow to my young heart. My final school year and I wouldn’t get to finish it at LES.
Second blow. The school we were going to attend was on the other end of the island. This meant that we had to go to LES everyday, then wave goodbye as we boarded buses that would take us down to Kirwan Terrace, our new schoolhouse, for the rest of the schoolyear.
Third blow. A lot of my classmates whom I’ve known since kindergarten, had either switched schools or had to leave the island because their parents choose what was best for them based on their circumstances. I understood some had no places to go, but for those who chose to go to a different school, my mind was warped. Why would anyone want to go to another school? That was like the ultimate betrayal for my young self who didn’t understand their logic for wanting to go anywhere other than where we grew up.
But then, we weren’t really going to the schoolhouse where we grew up, were we? My teachers remained the same. The rest of my classmates remained the same. But the new buildings that I didn’t know how to navigate on my first day, were not the walls that I stood against in my younger days.
Old Schoolhouse Memories
These halls were not the halls where I stood as hall monitor in my 4th and 5th years. The cafeteria was not the lunchroom where I stood at the door drinking all of my chocolate milk as I looked outside at the children who had already finished and were outside playing on the field and on the playground.
Those were the halls and the places that I had missed. Those were the halls that I would never get to walk again because this was my last year in elementary school. Next year I would be in Cancryn wearing white and maroon. This was my last year in blue and blue plaid.
I made the most of our unfortunate situation and still managed to have a good time, my last year of elementary school. I’m glad to know that now it is quite the opposite and serves as a shelter for people during the most recent storms that have once again wreaked havoc on our little islands.
But we rebuilt it then, as I know they will be able to rebuild themselves once again to become the Virgin Islands that I will always call home.
Did you ever have to switch schools during your final year? Let me know in the comments how that made you feel or how you coped with the change.