Colton Hopwood was ready to finish out the school year strong when Century High School let out for the last day of school Tuesday afternoon — with strong vocals, that is.
The 15-year-old sang a CupcakKe hit while he danced through the sunroof of his friend’s Honda CRV as she drove in circles around the high school’s parking lot. The rising sophomore said he’s looking forward to a summer hanging out with his friends, recent Century graduates Kyleigh Baker and Gabrielle Thorne, and a trip to Myrtle Beach.
The rest of the school day was par for the course, as Century students celebrated their last day alongside the county’s other public schools Tuesday. Students enjoyed their last hours with their teachers and friends before heading out for summer break, and participated in end-of-the-year parties with their advisory groups — small groups of students led by a staff adviser who meets with them weekly to help with everything from career planning to financial aid for college.
The school’s principal, Troy Barnes, said students finished up makeup examinations in the morning and entered into the “ceremonial kind of phase” of the day after lunch, when kids would head to their advisory groups for little celebrations to cap off the year.
“The students actually get pretty tight, because they’re together for four years,” Barnes said.
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With final examinations held Monday for underclassmen, attendance for the past couple of school days has been “pretty similar” to normal attendance, he said. There’s been a “little bit of decline” because of the extension to the school year, but not enough to be a noticeable difference, he added.
Cortni Richard’s advisory group had a spread of brownies, fruit, veggies, and chips and queso to munch on during its celebration. Cortni, 17, said she’s become good friends with some of the people in her group, especially since she transferred to Century during her sophomore year and didn’t attend the same middle school as many of the other students.
“It’s always faces that you know,” the rising senior said.
Brittney Monroe, 18, said the last day of school was laid-back and “really fun.”
“All of our classes were relaxed, we just got to hang out with our friends and watch movies, and say goodbye to everybody for the summer,” said the rising senior, who is most excited for her late start to the school day next year while she does dual enrollment at Carroll Community College.
Sarah Bartling, who teaches English to ninth- and 10th-grade students, said they were in “rare, weird form” on the last day as they came up with creative activities and played games. They asked “ridiculous, fun questions” about English and social studies in a “Jeopardy-esque” fashion.
“We had a blast,” said Bartling, who added this was her favorite year of teaching. “It was a great last day.”