Jason Smith, Seth Roush and Jesse Ray smile as the ceremony begins. Hunter Dood Staff Writer
Delton Kellogg Academy seniors received their diplomas this week, culminating four or more years of work.
The Academy graduated 21 students this year, all of whom are unique individuals, Academy teacher Sara Nevins said.
Delton Kellogg High School and Academy Principal Lucas Trierweiler said the moment represented a milestone in student persistence and hard work over the years.
“This is a tremendous accomplishment,” he told them. “You should be proud of yourself – I know I am.”
The Delton Kellogg Academy is an alternative to high school for its students. According to Trierweiler, in traditional high school, students' lives revolve around their schooling.
But students in the academy face challenges in their lives that other students may not have to face, making necessary the need for a more individualized approach. So, at the academy, school revolves around students' lives, Trierweiler said.
Nevins said the Academy provides online schooling for the students. But students are able to come in twice a week to get help if they need it.
“Some students came in twice a week; some didn’t come in until they took their final exam,” Nevins said. “It’s completely individualized.”
Trierweiler stressed the importance of building relationships with the students because it isn’t “all about school.” “The teachers actually cared and made sure you got your work done,” graduate Gavin Fugate said.
Nevins said she enjoyed seeing the students' faces when they finished their class because they were full of “joy.”
“I was completely exhilarated when I finished my last class,” Fugate said. “I felt the weight pulled off of my shoulders because I secured my future.”
Trierweiler told the students that they made their lives easier.
It might not have been the easiest path, he said, but these students “saved (their) future.”
The Academy runs in three two-hours shifts a day from Monday to Thursday. Students come to the school to take any tests. A total of 83 students are attending or previously attended the DK Academy. Of that number, 51 are still in attendance