MEXICO - Twenty-one students from the Exceptional Education program at the Center for Instruction, Technology and Innovation (CiTi) did not let any adversity, challenges or obstacles prevent them from achieving their crowning moment: high school graduation.

Each of the honorees, from throughout CiTI BOCES’ component school districts and the Cato-Meridian Central School District, were celebrated during a recent Exceptional Education graduation ceremony on CiTi’s main campus in Mexico. Following a traditional processional, CiTi BOCES District Superintendent Christopher Todd charged each honoree with providing as much love and support to others as they face new endeavors, the same which they received throughout their educational journey from CiTi staff members and their personal support systems.

“There’s a lot of you; that’s a lot of success,” he said. “You earned it; congratulations.”

Following a video presentation, Julie Landy, director of CiTi’s alternative and exceptional education programs, also offered congratulatory remarks. She said she could not be prouder of each graduate, all of whom have “taken the steps to get here today.”

“Graduation is a day that signified growth and progress,” Landy said.

A handful of the graduated reflected on their experiences and offered thanks to their family members, teachers and friends for helping to be the backbone of their journey. Angelica Moot (Central Square School District) thanked her teachers for being nice to her in school, while Ernest Ferro, Jr. (Fulton City School District) spoke about the work skills he learned.

“Mom and dad, I made it!” Ferro said.

After a presentation of diplomas from representatives of the graduates’ respective school districts, both the honorees and ceremony attendees were invited to a graduation celebration where everyone enjoyed cake, conversation and took photographs to mark the happy occasion.

Additional CiTi Exceptional Education graduates include: Tyler Kuwaliski (Altmar-Parish Williamstown Central School District), Sarah Kwietniak (Cato-Meridian Central School District), Zach Loomis (Mexico Academy and Central School District), Cory Dearinger (Sandy Creek Central School District) and both Dakotalee Gelling and Jonathan Santiago (Phoenix Central School District). Graduates from Hannibal Central School District include: Justin Dunn, Tyler Seales and Beau Tompkins, while Oswego City School District graduates are Sam Hollis and Tom Lagoe.

Other Exceptional Education graduates from the Fulton City School District are: Austin Loomis, Elver Merida, Katelynn Serio and Shannon St. Andrews. Additional Central Square School District graduates included: Jason Harris, Lincoln Marion, Shelby Rennie and Jonathon Anderson.

Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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