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Saugus fifth-graders celebrate the end of their elementary days

Billy Bouley, Marissa Bridges and Rhianon Brown at their "moving on" ceremony at the Oaklandvale Elementary School. (Owen O'Rourke)

SAUGUS — A small group of Saugus graduates crossed the stage Wednesday morning, bright eyed and excited for their next chapter—middle school.

Fifth graders at the Oaklandvale Elementary School celebrated the end of their elementary school days with a “moving on” ceremony, attended by their parents.

Rhiannon Brown, 10, who was one of three students to receive an award for earning final grades between 90 and 100 percent for both terms of fifth grade and the final term of fourth grade, had a word of advice for her peers as they prepare to enter the Belmonte Middle School.

“Wake up on time and do your homework,” said Brown. “We should stick together.”

Brown, who was nervous about the ceremony because she said she didn’t want to believe it was real until she had the certificate in her hand, said she felt good about the transition.

“It’s a lot more freedom and opportunities to do more stuff,” she said.

Pedro Daltoe, 11, said he was a little nervous for middle school, and he worried about adjusting to a new routine.

His advice to his classmates was to work hard.

The biggest honor of the morning was bestowed upon Principal Eric Jones by his students. Jones, who has been at the school for six years, has accepted a principal gig in Stoneham.

“These kids started with me in kindergarten and now they’re leaving at the same time as I am,” said Jones. “It’s a strange feeling. I’m going to miss these guys but I’m excited for what’s next.”

Students surprised Jones by presenting him with a gift, a bouquet of flowers, and a kind message about how helpful and understanding he has been as a principal.

“Congratulations to all of you and thank you to all of you for the last six years,” said Jones.

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