First generation high school graduate Jimmy Martinez has had some ups and downs throughout his high school career. Like many students, digital learning proved to be a challenge that disrupted a smooth high school experience, and Jimmy only earned eight credits over a two-year stretch. Faced with having to pass all eight classes his senior year, Jimmy had to overcome some of his bad habits such as spotty attendance, leaving classwork unfinished, and failing to complete missing work to achieve his goal of an on-time graduation.
As Jimmy began his senior year, his habits from the previous years seemed to be resurfacing. He found himself failing three classes. Communication between teachers, parents, his graduation specialist, counselors, and Jimmy began early in the semester to set up interventions like after school tutoring sessions. Within a few weeks of starting this plan, Jimmy embraced the additional time and support he was getting with his teachers during and after school. Moving forward, he began seeking out his missing assignments and coordinating tutoring sessions on his own.
All of his teachers saw changes. On teacher in particular, Ms. Lynch, stated, “Over the semester, I saw Jimmy begin to take more responsibility for his grades and attendance. Every day after being absent he would come in and ask for his work and get it done either that day or the next. As one of my older students in the class, he became a leader and would work well with others. He was never afraid to ask for help. By the end of the semester, Jimmy was a more responsible and hardworking student. I am very proud of him for passing Biology. He deserved it.”
Jimmy is now planning for his future beyond high school. He is beginning to research and investigate potentially attending Lanier Tech in the fall to further his education in the construction industry. He has now set his sights on being not only a first-generation high school graduate but a first-generation college graduate.
When faced with a year where hard work and dedication were key, senior Jimmy Martinez has reached deep down and persevered. We are so very proud of his determination and are confident he will finish strong and be a “GG” graduate in May! The sky is the limit for this bright young man.
We are proud of our students who are on the “Grad Track.” A Grad Track student has either failed one or more academic classes and/or is behind in credits needed for graduation with their cohort class. Graduation Specialists at all three Barrow County School System (BCSS) high schools support students who meet these qualifications.