Whittier's five high school graduates awarded their diplomas
By Charlene Arneson
Special to the Turnagain Times
Photo courtesy of Charlene Arneson
Whittier's graduating class of 2010.
At last, Graduation night arrived for Nicholas Swain, Jacob Ginn, Andrew Ladd, Tawnie Nelson, and Justin Lipscomb: Whittier's graduating class of 2010.
Years in the making, it came down to a final very busy week for the staff, students, and community members, with a flurry of activities preparing for the graduating class's special event. Parents, brothers and sisters, community members, fellow students, and former students turned out to watch them graduate and help the class celebrate.
Head Teacher Stephanie Burgoon, Superintendent Bob Crumley and I sat on the stage with the graduates listening to wonderful, emotionally charged speeches from Miss B and each graduate one by one, then Mr. Crumley. I could see almost everyone in the audience, and as I looked over the large crowd it was brought home to me what CSD's model was all about, and what had been achieved. Mr. Crumley stated, “Chugach School District's diploma means far more that just finishing 12 years of schooling, it means the graduates are ready to go forward into life well prepared to take on any challenge.” I saw the love and pride of each person sitting in the audience, and I felt that pride as I sat there. My thoughts were many. Then I remembered the slogan the state school boards use: “It takes a whole community to raise, support and teach a child Alaskan style.” The graduates' speeches were a testimony to that challenge and also a revelation about our community.
Congratulations to the five graduates, you are on your way. Congratulations to our staff for a job well done. Congratulations to the School Board and Superintendent Crumley for the guidance, vision, and faith in our model. Most of all, congratulations to the Community of Whittier as a whole for going one step further, supporting CSD, staff and most of all the children, “Whittier's style”.
Chugach School District (CSD) proudly presented Ms. Sierra Halverson of Girdwood her diploma when she graduated earlier in April 2010. Approximately fifty family members and friends held a graduation celebration for her in Girdwood Friday May 21. Sierra will be joining the CSD staff as an outdoor leadership guide/intern with Chugach School District's Excel camp this summer.