High school graduations to celebrate achievement; Top grads to deliver speeches; Monett selects speakers

Saturday, May 10, 2014


Graduations for Monett and other area high schools begin this weekend, providing friends and families an opportunity to celebrate the achievement of high school seniors receiving their diplomas.

Purdy High School will begin with graduation at 7 p.m. on Saturday in the high school gym. The 51 graduates will hear speeches by valedictorian Kelton Mattingly, son of Jim and Rhonda Mattingly, and salutatorian Megan Schilly, daughter of Rhonda Schilly and Doug Schilly.

Students have chosen Gary West as the faculty speaker. West is retiring after 12 years with the district. He taught speech, drama and Title 1 communication arts at the middle school.

Baccalaureate was held on May 7 with Rev. John Duncan, pastor from the Arnhart Baptist Church, speaking.

Pierce City High School will have graduation at 6 p.m. on Sunday in the high school gym. The 36 graduates will hear speeches by valedictorian Jenny Kaiser, daughter of Mike and Jill Kaiser, and salutatorian McKenzie Moreland, daughter of Russ and Kellie Moreland.

Faculty speaker, chosen by the students, will be high school social studies teacher Crystal Charles.

Baccalaureate services will be held at 4 p.m. on Sunday in the school gym.

Monett High School will have graduation ceremonies at 8 p.m. on Friday, May 16 in the high school gym. For the first time, Monett will not have a valedictorian and salutatorian in an effort to put a greater focus on the top 10 percent. The 128 graduates voted on who would give the addresses from those interested in speaking in the top 10 percent. Tom Younker, son of David Younker and Karen Robinson, will give one of the speeches. Hayley Long, daughter of Larry and Anna Long, and Lexi Witt, daughter of Randy and Julie Witt, will give the second speech.

Baccalaureate ceremonies will be held at 8 p.m. on Wednesday, May 14 in the high school commons. Chad Bennett, pastor at the Monett Community Church, will give the message.

Verona High School will have its graduation ceremonies at 2 p.m. on Sunday, May 18 in the high school gym. As has been the practice in Verona, scholarship recipients will be announced during the ceremony.

The top two in the class giving speeches will be Shelby Barsotti, daughter of Jimmy and Joy Barsotti, and Amanda Mullen, daughter of Sean and Lisa Mullen. The faculty speaker will be high school science teacher Tina Jennings.

There are 21 in the Verona graduating class.

Baccalaureate will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, May 14 at the Verona Baptist Church.

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