“I used to ride horses with my father and siblings where this new school is now standing,” said Sanchez. “I am so happy to be a part of a new beginning today for our children.”
The visiting community and dignitaries warmly received Gap officials, Arizona, Acothley, Mervin Hardy, Gevern Begay, Raymond Yellowman and Dorothy Lee and congratulated them for their undying dedication to seeing the building come to reality.
Tuba City Governing Board members were on hand to help with the celebration and ribbon cutting. Thomas Hatathlie gave a special and private ceremony earlier in the morning before the open community event took place.
Current Gap School Principal Lorna Lewis acknowledged the event’s significance.
“This is certainly a milestone and marking of a new beginning for Tuba City Unified today,” Principal Lewis said. “I want to thank Mr. Thomas Hatathlie for his holy blessing this morning and setting us on the right path to encourage and teach our children.”
She underscored how honored she was to be part of the students’ celebration.
“There is nothing more beautiful than to see a new educational facility,” Lewis said. “I am also deeply grateful for all of the people with the vision for this new school. It’s difficult to single out any one particular person. There have been so many before and there continue to be people now that are assisting us.”
She praised the role Gap parents have played.
“One of the greatest successes of this area and school is that there is 100 percent parental involvement at the Gap School,” Lewis said. “I would like to continue to see this 100 percent participation. I was able to get to know each student and every single parent here.
“I am hoping that you all stay very involved with this school for your children’s benefit. This school is for you.”
(Rosanda Suetopka Thayer is Public Relations Director for Tuba City Unified School District.)