by Shannon Carr
Rancho Milpitas Middle School held its third annual multicultural rally March 20, showcasing a wide array of cultural performances representing the diversity that makes up the 705 student body.
"This is an extraordinary rally every year," Principal Casey McMurray said in kicking off the celebration. Highlights of the hour-long event included the Latino Student Union performing "Pineapple Flower," and contemporary and traditional Bollywood, K-pop, Filipino, and Vietnamese dances, with many students wearing costumes embodying the respective culture.
This year's event was especially memorable because approximately 30 students and administrators from Nei-Li Junior High School in Taiwan visited the school for the day. The visiting students performed two of their own dances.
"I am thrilled that our students can experience today’s multicultural rally together with our visiting students from Taiwan," McMurray said. "It couldn’t have worked out better. Our students can share with the Rancho community and especially with our international guests the diversity that makes Milpitas such a unique and wonderful place. I also am excited for the cultural/educational exchange we will have with the school leaders who are accompanying our guest students from Taiwan."
The rally ended with a ceremonial item between Rancho and Nei-Li administration. McMurray and the school's principal signed off on a Memorandum of Understanding (pictured) in order to become Sister Schools for the next three years. McMurray said Nei-Li, which has 2,400 students and 220 teachers, is the first junior high school from Taiwan to ever become a sister school with a junior high school in the United States.
On March 21, the visitors continued on to visit with staff and administration at Milpitas High School.