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Promotion Day arrives for Cardozo eighth grade students
Eighth graders of Cardozo Middle School line up to receive their diplomas as part of the school’s promotion exercises, in the Angelo Novi Stadium on the Riverbank High campus. It was Thursday, May 23, as 160 of them anticipated receiving their diplomas and heading on to high school. Ric McGinnis/The News

‘Tis the season for promotions, graduations and other symbols of educational advancement, celebrated over the past week by schools in the Riverbank Unified School District.

On Thursday, May 23, 160 eighth graders from Cardozo Middle School briefly visited the high school campus as they celebrated their 2024 promotion ceremony.

That evening, after the processional Pomp and Circumstance brought them in, Class President Emily Ramirez led the crowd in the Pledge of Allegiance, followed by the National Anthem.

Then, Principal Kevin Bizzini welcomed the crowd to the Angelo Novi Stadium at RHS, where a number of these students will attend in the fall.

A number of awards were announced that some of the students had received, including the Laura C.C. Peterson Award. Presented by Vice Principal, Eduina Azevedo, it went to Leo Cox and Emily Ramirez.

According to notes on the program, Laura C.C. Petersen worked at Cardozo Middle School for many years. She always wanted to show her appreciation to the students who did well academically and who would go above and beyond to make things better at school, home, church, sports, band, arts and community. She believed that a well-rounded person could help improve the quality of life of those around them.

Peterson was a longtime teacher at Cardozo and became its first female principal.

Academic Excellence Awards were also mentioned by Azevedo, which went to 26 CMS students. They all have maintained an average GPA of 3.5 or above through all 12 quarters they have spent at Cardozo.

California Junior Scholastic Federation Awards were recognized by School Counselor Norma Ramirez and teacher Mr. Garcia.

Bizzini then introduced the speakers, Valedictorians Ramirez and Arizona Navarro.

Presentation of Promotion Certificates followed, then a farewell address by Ramirez, and closing remarks by Bizzini.

He announced his retirement next month, after 32 years in education, and thanked everyone that he was able to spend the last 20 here in Riverbank.

Similar Riverbank Unified School District advancement ceremonies occurred last week at Mesa Verde and California Avenue elementary campuses, as well as the Riverbank Language Academy, in addition to Crossroads Elementary School, in the Sylvan School District.

Dr aguilar
Riverbank Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Constantino Aguilar addresses the crowd of administrators, faculty, staff, parents, friends and the eighth graders awaiting their Cardozo Middle School promotion ceremony. It was on Thursday, May 23, the day before RHS graduation in that location, and just one of the many similar celebrations across the RUSD last week, as the school year came to a close. Ric McGinnis/The News