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This Eighth-Grader’s ‘Presidential Graduation Speech' is a Must-Watch

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This is the first time we’re hearing about this impressive eighth-grader from Thomas Middle School, but it undoubtedly won’t be the last.

A brilliant pick by the school’s principal for class speaker of the graduating eighth grade class, in just eight minutes Jack Aiello flawlessly impersonated this election year's big candidates while highlighting favorite moments from his time at the school.

It seems to start out like a normal speech. Aiello stands at the podium, his school’s administrators behind him and his classmates and their families watching on in front.

But what happens in the next eighth minutes in nothing short of amazing as Aiello impersonates Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, President Obama, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders better than a classically-trained Saturday Night Live actor.

Not only does he nail the respective candidates’ mannerisms and tone, but he also manages to provide a touching tribute to his school. “I mean, we have had so many great experiences here. You know, one of those would have to be starting foreign language. We’re learning languages from Spain, from France, from Germany, and China! And you know, people say I don’t like China. I love China,” Aiello as Donald Trump says to a chorus of laughter.

As Hillary Clinton, Aiello plays on Clinton’s good relationship with teachers to honor his own.

“I’d like to start off by thanking the hard-working teachers of Thomas Middle School. They’ve been our champions, they’ve given us the skills we need to get through sixth grade and through seventh grade and through eighth grade and now we’re going to take those skills and apply them to high school. And they all deserve a round of applause,” Aiello says as he continues to command the room.

Last but certainly not least, Aiello impersonates Bernie Sanders. In one of the speech's highlights, Aiello as Sanders says that while he thinks TMS has some of the best cinnamon rolls to offer, he has one complaint: they should be free.

Aiello concludes: “I would just like to say that the bottom line is as far as schools go, TMS is in the top one half of one half of one percent of schools in the entire country!"

Of course, Aiello received a standing ovation from his audience and at the time of this posting the video of his speech has been viewed almost one million times.

Watch it for yourself below.

Nicole Gorman, Senior Education World Contributor

6/17/2016

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