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Graduation rules create uproar among Valley parents

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By Alton Mitchell

High School graduations in Chambers County are only a couple of weeks away. As students at local high schools like LaFayette, Lanett, and Valley all prepare to make their future plans following graduation. A plan that has been in the works for the past several years has created an uproar among parents at Valley High School. Parents began to learn last week that the popular high school will not have a valedictorian or salutatorian this year.

The rumors initially began to circulate last week and the power of social media allowed the rumor to spread like wildfire. A popular Chambers County social media group broke the news in the form of a question on Friday. That post created a viral uproar among parents at Valley High School, as many sought to find the rationale in the decision in the viewpoints of one another. However more questions than answers remained following the post.

Finally one concerned parent reached out to educational officials and was given information that finally brought reasoning to the question of why. In summary the general idea of doing away with the valedictorian and salutatorian was to allow all students on all different levels of diplomas to be honored not just to have a few recognized for academic achievements. This new practice will allow for students who are on general style diplomas to be seen on the same level as those with advanced diploma tracts.

Despite a rational reason being given for the decision that was made when the class of 2016 was still in 8th grade many parents still expressed their opposition to the decision. Many argued that those students with top honors had worked hard for it and should be recognized. It went even further to say that scholarship opportunities may be lost without the recognition of honor being bestowed upon some of the county’s top performing students.

Graduation is just around the corner for students and as of right now for the first time in its recent history Valley High School appears to not have a valedictorian or salutatorian to embrace its graduation class.