DEARBORN, Mo. — Having deep ties to the North Platte School District was a point made by superintendent Karl Matt during graduation ceremonies held Sunday, May 13, at North Platte High School.
Of the 32 seniors to graduate on Mother’s Day, 15 seniors stood when Matt asked if they had a parent graduate from North Platte.
That was the start of Matt’s point about the tradition of families in the North Platte district.
When he asked how many had grandparents graduate from Dearborn, Camden Point or Edgerton, 12 remained standing. When great-grandparents were called five stood and when great-great-grandparents with ties to the district, two students remained standing.
Matt then asked for the graduates that started kindergarten at North Platte to stand and nearly 75 percent of the class stood.
“Thirty-two seniors have reached this moment each on their own path and learning experience and now we converge and celebrate this moment together,” Matt said.
In his speech to the class, the superintendent urged the graduates to be thankful for the support they had to reach this point and to continue to challenge themselves.
The top three students in the graduating class each spoke at the ceremony.
Caleb Crumley recounted highlights from the 13 years of school, touching on elementary, middle school, junior high and high school.
“I have 31 people here I can rely on any time I have a problem,” he said.
Katie Sanders praised the staff for “challenging us to be better as a person and a student.”
Austin Snook, the class valedictorian, spoke about growing up with most of his classmates since kindergarten. His message to his classmates was to ‘be their own champion’ no matter the cause they will come across in life.
North Platte High School principal Michelle Johnson has known many of the graduates for years, first as a teacher and then a principal at the intermediate school or the principal at the high school.
“Once you walk out of those doors, it is up to you where your future goes,” Johnson said. “The skills you have learned and developed the last 13 years are there for your use to make your future brighter. Your future holds endless possibility. Be confident and proud of who you are.”