Williams students get their groove on

Williams Unified student dancers perform to a packed house on Oct. 19.

For two weeks, Williams Unified School District students are expected to work harder they do anywhere else in their lives – and they do it on the dance floor.

Students from the Upper Elementary School completed the rigorous dance program by performing on Oct. 19 before a packed house.

Rojelio Viramontes, of Royal King Dance in Los Angeles, provided the dance instruction to students in kindergarten through sixth grade, and school officials said he knows how to get the best out of them – not just on the dance floor but as they go through life.

“Rojelio’s dance program teaches students life skills of perseverance, effort, cooperation, courage, responsibility, and pride,” said Denise Conrado, Williams Upper Elementary School principal.

Viramontes has been working with each grade level in 30-to-50 minute classes for the past two weeks, teaching them contemporary and classic dance routines.

The instruction is rigorous, Conrado said, but it led up to two fabulous performances that drew more than 650 families to the school.

“The program is so popular with the community that this year we had performances on two nights, one night for Williams Elementary School and one night for Williams Upper Elementary School,” Conrado said. “On both nights, the Williams High School Gym was packed to standing room capacity.”

Vermonters, who has been teaching the dance program in public schools for more than 20 years, teaches students that “if you earn it, you deserve it.”

Conrado said the students love the program and dance with pride.