Even though its been open since 1954, 2003 marks the first year that the Potomac-based McLean School of Maryland had a high school graduation.
Until 2000, the school only offered classes through 9th grade. They’ve added a grade per year since then and have now produced a previously unknown quantity — high school seniors.
“There were no older role models — people were really looking to them. They’re creating role models,” said Head of School Darlene Pierro.
The school had to develop traditions and define what it means to be a graduating senior. “That piece of it is very exciting,” Pierro said. One tradition that the students fought for was the opportunity to wear a cap and gown. Some of the seniors mentioned that administration had initially wanted students to graduate in formalwear.
“We took a stand and we won,” said senior Jennifer Hobbs.
Hobbs is only graduate to have been at McLean since Kindergarten. She took one semester to go to a different school, but returned to McLean. “I think, educationally, McLean is a great place.”
After thirteen years, Hobbs is ready to move on to new challenges and will attend Hood College in the fall. “I’m so ready to get out of here,” she said with the breezy confidence only known to high school seniors.
Of the 24 graduates, 22 will be moving on to a college in the fall, according to Pierro, and the other two have plans to attend in the future. All of them moving on, to schools as diverse as the University of Pennsylvania, Montgomery College, Hofstra, and North Carolina A&T, are excited about the challenges ahead. “I’ve been excited since sophomore year,” said Lindsay Robbins, who will be going to Indiana.