Wild Rose fourth-grade students grooved to and sang “Can’t Stop the Feeling” in celebration of the renaming of their school as Wild Rose School of Creative Arts during a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Sept. 7.
The school now integrates visual and performing arts across all core curricula to enhance learning. Students can explore their interests while honing their creative outlets in various fields, including vocal music, show choir, dance with California Dance Institute, ceramics and band.
Fifth-grade student Joshua Menlove, who participates in theater, dance and arts lessons, told fellow students, community representatives, parents, and school leaders during the ceremony that he is excited about attending a school dedicated to the visual and performing arts (VAPA).
“I am happy that there are more opportunities here at Wild Rose for kids to show their talents,” Menlove said. “We can improve our skills so that when we are older we can choose what we like to learn.”
Monrovia Unified Board of Education President Terrence Williams lauded the school’s new focus.
“We want our students to explore their passions and interests so that they have a clear vision of the college majors and careers they want to pursue after high school,” Williams said. “It all starts here – where many of our students will receive their first exposure to the arts and move forward in their education and careers with confidence in their potential.”
Wild Rose has garnered multiple honors for its strong VAPA program and highly qualified educators and staff, including state recognition as an Exemplary Arts School and Gold Ribbon School, and a Golden Bell from the California School Boards Association.
“I am thrilled that Wild Rose is now able to offer this experience that can so powerfully and positively impact the lives of thousands of students,” said Dana Elliott, a Wild Rose fourth- and fifth-grade combo teacher. “The arts enrich academics, as well as life, allowing us to express ourselves, and giving our students the well-roundedness with which to take on the world.”
The school incorporates opportunities for students to produce a variety of artwork for public display. Halls are lined with work demonstrating integration of arts in multiple subjects. At the front of the school, a banner created by fourth-grader Melissa Monjardin depicts a bear, the school’s mascot, reading a book with the tagline “Bears Strive for Excellence in Reading.”
Additional live performances included an opening from students in kindergarten through grade five, singing “The Star-Spangled Banner” and a hip-hop dance routine.
“The success of our students is the reason behind everything we do,” Monrovia Unified Superintendent Dr. Katherine Thorossian said. “We are so excited to have a school focused on visual and performing arts, providing a venue for our earliest learners to build their foundation in core subject skills, while extending their thinking and developing their creative talents.”