BLACKFOOT – Following the fifth year of existence, the Bingham Academy charter high school was ecstatic to present its second graduating class.
The 19 seniors, led by valedictorian Bailey Bradford, were presented to family, friends, alumni, teachers, and guests Friday night at the Blackfoot Performing Arts Center.
“Go out and pursue your dreams,” Bradford said. “Don’t let anyone stand in your way. I am an example of what this class is destined to accomplish.”
Bradford, while earning the credits necessary to graduate, has also been attending classes at Idaho State University through the dual credit program and has completed enough credits that when she returns to ISU in the fall, she will begin taking her upper class credits and will be classified as a junior in her studies.
Despite some negative reports by various agencies, officials said, the charter schools and Bingham Academy are healthy and headed down the right path to continue providing students and their parents the right options for success.
“We service over 500 families in Bingham County and over 700 students, many of whom are taking advantage of the dual credit program offered at Idaho colleges and universities,” Mark Fisk said. “We continue to be the only STEM accredited school in the state and we have the largest percentage of students who are utilizing the dual credit program. We are a viable opportunity and our teachers and students are succeeding.”
Outgoing lead administrator for the charter schools and Bingham Academy, Dr. Fred Ball, also spoke to the students and the audience.
“The one thing that I stress to you is to go for it,” Ball said. “You have been given the tools and the education to be successful in any walk of life. Some of you will continue with a formal education, some will purse a career in a noble profession like becoming an electrician, mechanic or something else that you may pursue, all are noble professions and can make you happy and allow you to be successful.”
In what has been a constant from all of the graduations that have taken place in the area to date, the teachers were recognized for their contributions to the graduating class of 2019.
“I cannot say enough about the contributions and work that is being done by the teachers at Bingham Academy,” Fisk said. “They work endless hours with the students, going far beyond what is necessary, and their hard work is making a difference with our students. They never say no to a request and are the greatest group of teachers that anyone could ever be affiliated with.”
Receiving diplomas from Bingham Academy were Angel Avila, Axel Barrera, Bailey Bradford, Kyle Falter, Tayley Going, Alyssa Jones, Carson Lilya, Caidence Marriott, Bastian McKay, John Mess (foreign exchange student), Trae Mecham, Sariah Pendlebury, Isaic Phelps, Robert Pillsbury, Alondra Sanchez, Takota Thompson, Kalub Verlanic, Jayden Wheeler and Sierra Wolfley.