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Clifton Elementary Staff and Alumni to Celebrate School's Legacy

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Parents and staff members fought long and hard this year to keep Clifton Elementary School open after the Fairfax County school board chose to close it.
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Parents and staff members fought long and hard this year to keep Clifton Elementary School open after the Fairfax County school board chose to close it.

The community is mourning the loss of the institution.

It's been almost a year since Fairfax County's school board voted to close Clifton, citing concerns about the school's aging building and projected enrollment decline.

Some residents cried foul and others simply wept after the vote. Many of them pursued a yearlong legal battle to keep the school open; some parents also tried to turn Clifton into a charter school.

Clifton PTA president Patty Hopkins says the end of the final year at the elementary school has brought those feelings back for everyone attached to the school.

"Emotions are running high -- they're definitely running high -- and you'll see people crying for no apparent reason, but we all know why they're crying," she says.

The school is holding a celebration of Clifton Elementary's legacy Friday evening for all staff and alumni of the school.

"So we're pulling out all memorabilia -- yearbooks, photos, newspaper articles, awards," Hopkins says.

Hopkins says she expects more than 500 people to show up. Tuesday is the last day of school for Clifton's students, and the school will officially close for good June 30.

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