Celebrating the Class of 2027
The Class of 2027 is a team. What they did throughout their middle school years, they did together — whether it was holding dance parties in the hallways, playing Capture the Flag in the pitch dark, or organizing a protest in support of their favorite piece of playground equipment.
“I can safely say that anything we set our minds to, we would accomplish as a team with complete determination,” 8th grade student Maggie Meacham said.
On Friday, the class shared another experience — Middle School Honor Day, one of Harpeth Hall’s enduring and beautiful traditions. Honor Day marks the passage from middle school to upper school, and this year celebrated the Class of 2027 — a “determined and spirited” group who successfully completed the Daugh W. Smith Middle School program.
Maggie, who was chosen by her peers to be the speaker at Friday’s celebration, reflected on the highlights of her classmates’ middle school years, and Judi O’Brien, director of the middle school, spoke of the curiosity and thoughtfulness displayed by the 8th grade students this year.
This class, she said, is a team of sisters, a term the Class of 2027 often uses to refer to themselves.
“One of the things that sisterhood means to me is that when something good is happening to your sister, you feel like it is happening to you,” Ms. O’Brien said as she addressed a packed theatre of the Class of 2027’s biggest fans — their friends and family. “I have witnessed so many occasions where you have cheered each other on and reveled in each other’s successes.”
The 8th grade class is the embodiment of Harpeth Hall’s motto, “Let us lift up the mind and the spirit,” Ms. O’Brien said. From pep rallies to talent shows, COVID-19 quarantines and distant learning, tough exams and service trips, the students of this class knew they could rely on each other through an incredible community of support they built together.
“There is extraordinary power in women supporting other women, and you have done that for each other in so many ways. You
appreciate and acknowledge others’ contributions and celebrate them,” Ms. O’Brien said.
The 2023 Honor Day celebration was special for Ms. O’Brien, too. The 88 girls who walked across the stage in the Frances Bond Davis Theatre to collect their certificates are the last class of Honeybears for Ms. O’Brien, who is leaving Harpeth Hall after seven years in her role as the head of the middle school. Speaking to students, she recognized the girls’ strong character, humor, creativity, and leadership and reflected on how the class always came through difficult times with compassion and resilience. She found inspiration in qualities unique to this class.
“The middle school faculty and I have full hearts and high hopes in knowing that the Class of 2027 will continue to lead confidently and live extraordinary lives,” Ms. O’Brien said as the students looked forward to crossing Souby Lawn toto begin their journeys in Harpeth Hall’s upper school.
Maggie is not worried about the transition to high school, because, in the words of Disney’s “High School Musical,” the members of her class are “all in this together.”
“Just like we have been a team, supporting and uplifting each other in 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th grade, we will continue to be there for each other in the years ahead,” Maggie said. “So even though I don’t know what next year will hold, I do know the who, and that is you all, the Class of 2027. All the good, bad, exciting, and unknown things that are coming our way, we will face together.”