School Traditions

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Traditions are a critical piece of Gifford's culture. They contribute a sense of belonging that strengthens our community spirit. We have several celebrations throughout the school year starting in October with our Halloween Carnival and culminating in our Graduation and Closing Ceremony.

Fall Hiking Trips
Students and staff in each program kick off the fall term with day hikes to either Blue Hills Reservation, Nonet Woodlands or Mount Wachusett Reservation. These experiential learning opportunities foster team building, positive peer support, and confidence to overcome challenges. 

Halloween Carnival
Gifford's Halloween Carnival is filled with fun and creativity. Students and staff work together to design and build interactive game booths where everyone can play for fun and earn tickets for prizes and candy. Students and staff dress in costumes and participate in the games, the pie eating contest, karaoke and more. 

Thanksgiving Feast
Our Thanksgiving Feast, held the day before Thanksgiving, is a wonderful community event for students and staff. The day kicks off with student staff football games in each school, and a grand feast follows. The kitchen prepares food for 200 people, and the students make desserts. A student representative from each school stands before the community, and shares a personal expression of thanks. 

Holiday Follies
This is a fun and festive event that showcases a range of talent and teamwork. The Studio Program coordinates a multimedia production of an original holiday tale each year, and there's a role for every student who wishes to participate.

Graduation & Closing Ceremony
We close the school year by celebrating all students' efforts and accomplishments. Our graduating seniors receive a diploma, and all students are recognized for a specific area of achievement made during the year. In addition to an address by our Board President, and Executive Director, we invite a parent to speak as well. After a video showcasing the year in review, we gather outside for refreshments and a final farewell.