May 21, 2019, 12:17pm | St Vrain Valley School District
As we move toward the end of another outstanding school year, it is an honor to recognize the unwavering drive, strength of character, and rigorous academic preparation that has propelled approximately 2,000 students to the day of their high school graduation. The thunderous applause that will follow them as they walk across the stage to receive their diploma is not only a testament to their academic achievements, but a symbol of our community’s enduring commitment to the continued success of our students, teachers, staff, parents, and community.
If we reflect back thirteen years ago to when this year’s seniors were entering kindergarten, we will see an extraordinary transformation of our public school system and our community. For more than a decade, St. Vrain Valley Schools has been advancing excellence through the development of programming that is giving our students a strong competitive advantage to excel in a complex, globalized world.
Our 2019 graduates have advanced their skills through enrollment in high-quality instructional focus academics in Biomedical Sciences, Energy, Engineering and Aerospace, Medical and BioScience, Leadership, STEM, Visual and Performing Arts, and more. They have been connected to the best technology and learning resources through our 1:1 technology initiative and nationally recognized Learning Technology Plan. They have been highly engaged in their school communities and extended learning beyond the school day through the arts, music, athletics, advanced career and technology programs, and other co-curricular activities. Through all of this, they have also become highly engaged citizens who remain focused on strengthening our society and bettering our world.
The Class of 2019 enrolled in a record number of Advanced Placement exams, International Baccalaureate courses and concurrent enrollment college courses, giving them the opportunity to start their postsecondary education with approximately 12,000 college credits on their transcripts, potentially saving their families $3.4 million in tuition costs. Our graduating seniors have also received numerous recognitions for their academic achievements, talents, and innovative ideas, including: Boettcher Scholarships; Daniels Scholarships; National Merit semifinalists and finalists; All-State athletes; All-State musicians; and thousands of college acceptance letters from institutions across the country including many Ivy League schools, military academies and other highly competitive colleges and universities. We are incredibly proud of what our students have accomplished in a time of increasing academic rigor, expanding graduation requirements, and the highest expectations of leadership, community and citizenship.
As we celebrate the many successes of our students, St. Vrain Valley Schools continues to enhance the learning experience by expanding opportunities across our district, including opening a second Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-TECH) program in Biochemistry this fall at Frederick High School. P-TECH is a newer educational model that allows students to earn an Associate degree concurrently with their high school diploma – at no cost to the student – while receiving mentorship and internship opportunities with industry partners. This unique program supports the creation of a dynamic workforce through the development of intergenerational talent, and gives every student the framework and resources they need to achieve an outstanding postsecondary education.
Public education is one of the most powerful systems for driving positive change in our society. Across the United States, approximately 90 percent of our children attend a public school – and in the St. Vrain Valley, that percentage is even higher. With the future success of our community and nation dependent on the quality of our public schools, we have no greater responsibility than ensuring every child in our community receives a rigorous, engaging, and high-quality education. To this end, it is an honor to stand alongside our Board of Education, teachers, staff, parents, administrators, and other community partners to celebrate the Class of 2019 and recognize our students’ high levels of success.
Lastly, I want to share my heartfelt gratitude to all of our seniors and wish you the very best in life. Our schools will forever be strengthened by your time in our community – you are truly a class of compassionate, dedicated, intelligent, and outstanding people who will boldly lead our country into the future.
Don Haddad, Ed.D.
Superintendent, St. Vrain Valley Schools