It was an honor to shake the hands of some 2,600 graduating seniors, Class of 2012, during commencement ceremonies for the San Antonio Independent School District, which began last week. I was especially touched when one of our valedictorians mentioned the loss of her father during her senior year. Yet there she was, top of her class with two dozen scholarship offers and on her way to New York University.
I never cease to be impressed by our students’ fortitude and tenacity. Whether it’s a loss of a loved one, the challenges of home life or a job they must juggle with school, they suit up and show up day after day. That was never as apparent as at the graduation ceremonies, which were like no others I have experienced in my 40 years as an educator. There were no on-stage pranks. Not a single back-flip and no silly string. Humility and respect were on full display as our students crossed the stage to receive the diplomas they earned.