September 15 is El Salvador's Day of Independence from Spain. On Friday, September 11 the Grades 3-12 filled the bleachers in the gym. To add to the thousand four hundred students and hundred of teachers, there were parents of seniors. The ceremony starts with the top three senior male students and the top three female students marching around the gym carrying the flag. Behind them follows the top six Grade Eleven students to whom the flag will be passed at the end of the ceremony. This makes more sense in public schools where this is the end of their school year. Then there are speeches made by dignitaries and patriotic essays read by students.
The rest of the seniors come in folkloric costume. This is a pose with Mr. Erazo, Dean of Teachers, father of one of the marching seniors, the recipient of the most acclaimed teacher award, and a wonderful individual.
Then the seniors dance. Since there are 116 seniors, 110 dancing, they are divided into three groups, each with a different folkloric dance to perform. They practised for weeks!
The choreographer is a man named Arturo who is an assistant in the High School library.
The fellow with the pointed hat weaves amongst the dancers - he is a sort of clown. They were magnificent. This ceremony is very impressive, often gives me goose bumps.