Welcome, Class of 2036: Incoming kindergarten students enjoy ‘signing day’

LAMBERTVILLE, Mich. — A Michigan elementary school is welcoming new kindergarten students with a ceremony similar to national signing days for college-bound athletes

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More than 55 incoming students representing the Class of 2036 signed pledges at an open house hosted by Monroe Road Elementary School in Lambertville on May 2, The Monroe News reported.

School staff members created the atmosphere high school students experience, complete with the school’s Bedford mule logo and a table filled with baseball caps, according to the newspaper.

The ceremony included “contracts” that children signed with hand prints and paint, WXYZ-TV reported. Students pledged to attend school daily with a smile, a good night’s sleep and a positive attitude.

“It was a big deal and it was amazing. I didn’t know what to expect,” Tiffany Smith, whose son will be attending the school in the fall as a kindergarten student, told WXYZ.

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The school’s principal, Alex Chapman, said he got the idea from viewing social media posts.

“I thought about high school athletes when they sign, like a college baseball player or football player. School districts make a big deal out of it,” Chapman told the News. The parents come in and they get a picture with the principal and the athletic director and there are hats on the table.

“I thought, what if we did this for every kindergartener that came into our building? They’re committing to Bedford schools for the next 13 years.”

Chapman said the signing day idea was more interactive and fun than simply giving a tour to incoming students and their parents.

“I got to meet every incoming kindergartener and their families,” Chapman told the News. “Not only did I get a photo with them, I got to shake their hands, hear their names and meet their families. I would not have had the opportunity if I was giving tours.

“It was much more personal and meaningful.”

The fall term begins on Sept. 5, the News reported.

Smith told WXYZ that her son can look forward to the upcoming term and has a contract to show for it.

“It’s a good confidence booster. Right away we went home and hung it up and he looks at it,” Smith told the television station. “I think it’s a good little reminder for him to look at over the next couple of months until he officially starts.”

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