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Cornerstone set in place at Cesar Chavez Junior High
Although cornerstones are no longer used to lay out modern buildings, Masonic Lodge officials from throughout California conducted a ceremony to honor the opening of Cesar Chavez Junior High School on Monday.

The ceremony was similar used by George Washington to lay the cornerstone of the U.S. Capitol. Frank Loui, Grand Master of the Masons of California, said the ceremony is symbolic that "each one should try to make perfect ourselves" and "fit perfectly within our community."

Seventh-graders of Ceres' newest junior high - which opened in August at a cost of $35 million - watched inside the multi-purpose room along with officials and members of the public. The ceremony included the presentation of a time capsule filled with such items as copies of the Ceres Courier, the Bee, Tiger Times student newspaper, PE clothes, 2011 copper penny, a video of the school and a cell phone.

Plans are to open the capsule in 50 years.

Cesar Chavez Junior High School opened with 228 seventh-graders.It alleviated overcrowding at the Mae Hensley and Blaker Kinser junior high school campuses. The district's goal is to have all three schools with a student population of about 600 students, something which will occur when Chavez adds eighth-graders in the 2012-13 school year.

Principal Jose Beltran accepted the stone as well as a $1,000 donation from the Masons for use on the campus.