Meadowbrook High School held their annual flag ceremony in their auditorium Friday, honoring the school’s rich cultural diversity.
“The flag ceremony is an opportunity for Meadowbrook to showcase and celebrate the rich diversity of our school and community,” said Meadowbrook Head Principal Dr. Thomas Ferrell. “This ceremony isn’t just a Meadowbrook celebration but a Chesterfield County celebration.”
The ceremony goes back 15 years, originally celebrating Meadowbrook’s English as a Second Language (ESOL) program, and now has evolved into a school-wide, annual event for the entire school to see. This year, School Board member David Wyman spoke at the event, as did Dale district supervisor Jim Holland.
For the past eight years math teacher and Interact club sponsor Paul Daszkiewicz has produced the ceremony. In teaching many students in the International Baccalaureate (IB) program, Meadowbrook’s specialty center, Daszkiewicz said the school resembles the “United Nations of Chesterfield County,” and is probably the most culturally diverse school in the county. The school’s lobby is home to more than 80 flags representing the countries students have come from over the years, said Daszkiewicz.
“We are proud of that fact,” he said, “and we celebrate it whenever we can, and I say that we are like the United Nations; we are the United Nations of Chesterfield County and we are proud of that. We look like the world.”
For Daszkiewicz, the occasion is meant to celebrate who Meadowbrook is, that “there’s no better way to celebrate all the ethnicities and nationalities that we have.” He offers his thanks to the collaboration from all the different school departments, saying it is probably the most collaborative event the school has.