Colorado Connections Academy Celebrates School's Largest Graduating Class

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More than 200 online public school graduates received diplomas during traditional in-person commencement ceremony

High school graduate

Online school students graduate during in-person ceremony

I’ve enjoyed watching our graduates cross that stage, some I’ve known since Kindergarten, and set out to discover what the future holds for them. I truly believe that we’ve equipped our graduates with the knowledge and confidence they need to reach their goals

Colorado Connections Academy @ Mapleton celebrated the graduation of its largest senior class to date this month. The full-time online public school graduated more than 200 students who benefitted from the school’s unique and tailored online education experience. The Colorado Connections Academy Class of 2018 represents a highly diverse and accomplished group of students who earned nearly one million dollars in scholarship funds.

“I’ve enjoyed watching our graduates cross that stage, some I’ve known since Kindergarten, and set out to discover what the future holds for them. I truly believe that we’ve equipped our graduates with the knowledge and confidence they need to reach their goals,” said Chaille Hymes, school leader for Colorado Connections Academy schools. “It has been incredibly rewarding to watch each student’s growth over the years and see how they have thrived within this learning environment.”

Celebrating the school’s largest graduating class to date, 2018 also marked the first year Colorado Connections Academy recognized graduates during a stand-alone ceremony. Previously, the school shared a graduation ceremony with district partner, Mapleton Public Schools.

Among the Class of 2018 graduates were:

  •     Malcolm Johnston (Fort Collins, Colo.) – Malcolm served as the Class of 2018 Valedictorian and plans to attend the Colorado School of Mines to pursue a degree in chemistry. He received the Colorado School of Mines Medal of Achievement in math and science. He is previously a winner of the CCIRA Colorado Young Writers’ Award.
  •     Grace Garcia (Parker, Colo.) – Grace is on the Youth Board for the Epilepsy Foundation of Colorado. She recently raised over $2,150 at a Volleyball Clinic for the organization’s summer camp and will serve as a volunteer there throughout the summer. She plans to attend the University of Colorado @ Colorado Springs and will major in criminal justice. Grace received scholarships from the Epilepsy Foundation and Douglas County Community. She hopes to join the FBI in the future.
  •     Annabel Hartman (Colorado Springs, Colo.) – Annabel served as Salutatorian and plans to attend the Academy of Art University in San Francisco this fall. She will work a semester ahead and begin taking classes online through the university in June. She will study game design and receive hands-on experience creating a professional quality art and game design portfolio.
  •     Katielyn Miller (Bailey, Colo.) – Katielyn is passionate about figure skating, she has traveled the country for competitions and hopes to perform with Disney on Ice in the future. She also shows her shepherd at the Australian Shepherd National Convention. Katielyn received the Presidential Academic scholarship, Australian Shepherd Club of America’s Cee Hambo scholarship, and the United States Figure Skating Graduation Seniors program silver distinction scholarship.
  •     Bailey Barnum (Rifle, Colo.) – Bailey sang the national anthem at the commencement ceremony. She plans to attend Colorado Mountain College to study geology. She will also teach dance and continue performing while obtaining her degree. She hopes to someday travel the world and become part of a professional dance company.
  •     Kaitlynne Funderburgh (Commerce City, Colo.) – Kaitlynne secured an internship with the Aurora Municipal Court and will be attending college to become a paralegal.

Colorado Connections Academy, a network of full-time, tuition-free statewide online public schools, combines Colorado-certified teachers, an award-winning curriculum, technology tools, engaging electives, and social experiences to create a supportive and successful online learning program for families and students who want an individualized approach to education. As a public school, there are no fees or tuition to attend and all students are required to take the same state assessments as traditional public school students. The non-traditional learning environment can be a great fit for all types of students.

Colorado Connections Academy @ Mapleton, in its sixteenth year providing students a flexible online learning option, serves approximately 2,400 students in grades K-12 across the state. Colorado Connections Academy @ Durango, authorized by the Durango School District 9-R, opened in the 2016-17 school year for students statewide and currently serves 550 students in grades K-11. In the 2018-19 school year, Colorado Connections Academy @ Durango will expand to serve students in 12th grade. Both schools are supported by Connections Academy and are open to students statewide regardless of where they live in Colorado.

Enrollment for the 2018-19 school year is currently open for both schools; free in-person and online information sessions are available for families interested in learning more about the online program.

About Colorado Connections Academy
Colorado Connections Academy schools are tuition-free, high-quality, highly accountable public online schools serving students statewide. Colorado Connections Academy @ Mapleton, which serves students in grades K-12 statewide, opened in 2002 and is a contract school with Mapleton Public Schools. Colorado Connections Academy @ Durango, authorized by the Durango Public School District 9-R, opened in the 2016-17 school year for students in grades K-10, and will add an additional grade level each subsequent school year. Colorado Connections Academy schools provide students with the flexibility to learn from anywhere there is an Internet connection and with an innovative online school curriculum that meets rigorous state education standards. The combination of Colorado-certified teachers, a proven curriculum, unique electives, technology tools, and community experiences creates a supportive and successful online learning opportunity for families and children who want an individualized approach to education. For more information, call 800-382-6010 or visit http://www.ColoradoConnectionsAcademy.com.

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Samantha Bryant
Colorado Connections Academy
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