End of school year brings uncertainties but finishes strong
BOWLING GREEN—It all looked so familiar, but it had subtle differences. The graduates with caps and gowns striding into the high school gym, walking the perimeter and then down the center aisle to their seats, which were set 6-feet apart, spread out over the entire gym floor.
In the bleachers were family members and teachers separated into tight groups, but watching with just as much anticipation as any other year’s graduating class.
For some of the students, the ceremony didn’t hold the same mystique as it would have had, had they been able to finish their senior year in a more traditional manner. Orders from the governor shut all schools back in March because of the coronavirus pandemic. Students had to finish their studies from home. Spring athletic practices and competitions were canceled. But still, most of the students stepping into the gym Friday night were smiling—their four-year journey through high school coming to a celebratory conclusion.
Principal Scott Mullins thanked everyone for coming. Because of the health department restrictions, each graduating senior was allowed only two guests at the ceremony. Mullin brought back an old tradition of having everyone stand and sing the school song.
Bowling Green R-1 School Superintendent Matt Frederickson said, “While today’s graduation marks a watershed moment in the history of our school district, it of course, marks a major milestone in the lives of the young women and men graduating in the class of 2020.”
He added that the students should be proud of themselves because they set a standard for “unity and spirit—in case you didn’t hear that rousing chorus of the school song—hard work, service and concern for others.”
Frederickson noted that even though the finish line moved a bit, and presented some unique challenges, “it could hardly derail the triumphant conclusion of your four years at Bowling Green High School. Your attitude, resilience and tenacity have been true examples of what it means to be a successful ambassador of this fine institution.”
Eighteen percent of the students scored higher than a 25 on their ACTs, and three students scored a 31 or above, qualifying them for a Missouri scholarship. More than 70 percent of this graduating class indicated they had plans for college or post secondary education, such as technical schools and community college, Frederickson said. Thirteen percent scored a GPA of 4.0 or higher.
He noted that many in the class had found ways to make a difference in the world around them through service to others.
“With regard to service, there are countless examples, but none more powerful I think, than those students who have elected to serve our country as a member of the military, he said. At least 10 percent of the graduating class had committed to military service.
Frederickson concluded with a quote from Albert Einstein: “A life that is not lived for others is not worth living.”
The school’s top 10 percent were introduced, and awards were presented. This year’s valedictorian was Elizabeth H. Truelove and salutatorian was Sidney E. Moss.