The middle school graduating class of 2022 has probably had the most hectic three years of their lives. In September 2019, WMS was under construction. This resulted in all the students being moved to different schools. 8th-grade student, Aaron Crowell said, “I thought it would be like the Disney Channel movies, but in reality, it’s nothing like that.” 8th grader, Dylan Mastrola said, “I thought middle school would be scary and the older kids would be mean.”
The 6th graders were moved to Avenel Middle School from September to January. Then, we were at WMS for about 9 weeks, before the outbreak of the coronavirus caused all of us to go home on lockdown. We predicted that we would be back in school after 2 weeks, but it ended up being 1 and a ½ years. We learned through different video conferencing platforms, like Google Meet and Zoom.
The district then announced that we would be able to come back to school in person for our eighth grade year. We would still be required to wear masks in school until the mask mandate was lifted on March 7th, 2022. The only time they were allowed to be off was during lunch, during physical education, and whenever we were outside.
Around winter break, there was the Omicron variant outbreak across Woodbridge. We were all sent home for 1-2 weeks. All students were in doubt when this was announced, thinking back to what happened 2 years back. Thankfully, the spread of the variant was slowed down, and we were able to return after the predicted time.
Due to all the events that took place, the 8th graders missed out on a lot of opportunities. Most of the activities were either canceled completely or altered to fit the needs of that time. Crowell was disappointed that he missed out on the choir competition at Six Flags. 8th-grade student, Madelyn Brenner, was sad she missed out on 2 years of field day.
Although there was a lot going on, we were all able to look for the positivity in the situation and make some core memories. 8th-grade student, Josias Ortiz said, “I enjoyed being able to reunite with my friends after the lockdown.”
8th-grade student Jordan Waites said, “I have a lot of memories from lunch and the dance.” Brenner enjoyed playing sports in the gym with her friends.
We asked the graduating class what advice they would leave with the 6th and 7th graders. Here are some of their responses:
Laura Mazur and Crowell agreed that they shouldn’t get into any drama and stay focused in class or else they’ll fall behind.
Waites said, “Be yourself, and don’t care about what other people think.”
Brenner said, “Stay on the good side of teachers.”
After all that has happened, we all agree that these 3 years went by so fast. There’s a lot more in store for all of us, but we will never forget our origins at Woodbridge Middle School, where we had some of the best times of our lives.