WESTON, Conn. — It was a joyful moment as Superintendent of Schools Colleen Palmer certified the 206 graduates of Weston High School’s Class of 2016 on Monday evening. Ellen Uzenoff, chair of the Board of Education, then handed out diplomas in the front of a tent overflowing with happy family members.
The faculty speaker, social studies teacher William Moeder, was a hit with the parents, students and fellow staff members. Chosen to speak by the graduates, he entertained the crowd with about 10 minutes of stand-up, as he hurled a stream of one-liners that mixed wit with wisdom.
He told parents to enjoy their children’s accomplishment — “for two days” — then begin thinking about college. Later, you can stress over their jobs, he said. Then they get married, and you can question whether your son- or daughter-in- law is raising the grandchildren properly, Moeder said. Life moves on, he said, and soon they hand you this piece of paper, “something about power of attorney,” and you find yourself sitting in a small room, looking out at the water.
Turning serious, Moeder noted that 2016 is an election year, and he told the students, “many of you will be voting for the first time.” He told the graduates to “think for yourselves,” and that “too many people read to reinforce, not broaden their opinions.”
He closed by saying, “Your legacy will be how you treat others.”
Weston High Principal Lisa Deorio told the graduates, “You can’t reach your goals without knowing who you are.” She reminded them that wherever they go, “join something, be a part of your community … (and) drop by when you’re in town.”
One of the student speakers, class Co-President David Silverman, told his peers that if they have even a glimpse of an idea, start now and run fast after it.
In closing, he asked his classmates to thank their parents, and, speaking for all his classmates, he said, “We have the best teachers in the entire world. You are priceless.”