ARS Vegas Shoushi Chapter Saturday School Celebrates Successful Academic Year

ARS Shoushi Chapter Saturday School students

LAS VEGAS—The Armenian Relief Society Shoushi Chapter of Las Vegas Verjine Koujakian Saturday School had a very successful 2015-2016 academic year. The school is located at 2054 East Desert Inn Road in Las Vegas, Nevada, home of St. Garabed Armenian Apostolic Church and The Armenian Cultural Center.

The entire staff, led by principal Houry Darakjian, did a wonderful job fulfilling the curricula that the school administration had planned.

There were sixty students ranging in ages 3 to 13, from kindergarten to 6th grade. We have both Eastern and Western Armenian dialects where students are taught to read, write, and speak Armenian, along with our history and current events. Meline Terzian dedicated her time and enthusiastically taught our students Armenian Dance lessons.

The year-end program took place on May 22, 2016 at VZ Dance Studio, where over 240 people gathered. Principal Houry Darakjian opened the ceremony thanking the staff for all their hard work, and the parents for their dedication for bringing their kids to school. She emphasized the importance of teaching about our culture, language, and passing it on to future generations.

The program included Armenian dances, poems and songs, dedicated to Armenia and Artsakh.

After the school program, ARS Shoushi Chapter Chairlady Siroun Bedirian took the stage and thanked the teachers, parents and guests for their continuous support. She talked about the late Verjine Koujakian, who started the school 23 years ago in a local library with 8 students. Ung, Siroun said she felt her presence and she would be very proud of the accomplishments. Students received a certificate for attending the classes and also a school group picture.

The ARS Shoushi Board had decided to honor four of the teachers for their contributions to the school: Arpie Bedrossian, who is responsible for the kindergarten class, Digin Hasmik Harutyunyan, who is in charge of Eastern Armenian studies, Meline Terzian, who is in charge of the dance classes, and Arpi Hicks, who has been a dedicated teacher and an ARS member for many years.

Then, as another surprise to the students and parents, each teacher had chosen an exemplary student from her class who had academically done a great job throughout the school year. The teachers spoke about their students and awarded them with certificates.

The exemplary students were: Alana Nahabedian, Liana Havanjian, Armen Kassamanian, Zhirayr Tokhalian, Lucy Tokhalian, Adam Krikorian, Nareg Garapetyan, Liliana Chulhakyan, Gabby Gueyikian and Victoya Alaverdyan.

The program ended with a closing prayer by Father Arsen Kassabian from St. Garabed Armenian Apostolic Church, followed by a reception with food and soft drinks prepared and donated by the parents. During the reception, parents thanked the principal, the teachers and expressed their devotion to the school. They were showered with flowers.

The only Armenian TV station in Las Vegas, Armount TV, videotaped the program, and will be available on DVD during the new school year registration on September 10, 2016.

We encourage all the parents to bring their kids to school on Saturdays, when it opens its doors again in the fall. It is our unique language, culture and history that the kids need to learn. There could be a future Siamanto, Charents, Shiraz, Kouchag, or Aram Khachadourian among them. Please don’t deprive them of that opportunity. Let them know who we are, help them make Armenian friends, sing and dance in Armenian, and be proud of their ancestors.

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