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Stet Field Day: long-time tradition a fitting ending

Jan Witteveen, third and fourth grade teacher at Stet, embraces former student Ashley Still, a 2011 Stet grad, at the end of the Field Day Saturday. (Photo by JoEllen Black/Richmond News)

By JoEllen Black/Richmond News

Jan Witteveen thought she had a nice surprise for her third and fourth grade class last Thursday. Witteveen announced to her students that day, May 17, would be Stet’s last of day of school instead of the scheduled half day on Friday, May 18. Witteveen’s announcement, however, brought about a different response from some students who said they wanted the school year to end.

“Of the six students (in her class), four of us were crying,” she said. “We went to the zoo later that day and had a great time. The reality just sat in and they’ll be fine.”

As the community came to Stet school Saturday for its final Field Day, a reality check greeted them at the door as well. The administration offices were nearly bare and all of the school’s athletic trophies housed in glass cases were removed and placed in boxes. The classrooms were sparse, with much of the tables, chairs and other equipment to operate the school placed in the school’s gymnasium ready for auction.

One auction occurred for annexed school districts on May 21 and another for the public will be held June 9. People meandered throughout the building Saturday, peeking into classrooms, looking through books at the school library and surveying equipment in the gym. But most of the kids were busy having fun outside in a bounce house.

Kids and adults played volleyball or sat in lawn chairs taking in the activities and beautiful scenic view. Longtime bus driver for the district, Shirley Bisbee, coordinated the event, wa Stet tradition. Field day or the picnic, as one put it, used w“I wanted this as a last happy ending,” Bisbee said. “This will be our last time.”

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