Homer Alaska - Schools

Story last updated at 8:53 PM on Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Highlights from Flex graduation


Photo by Michael Armstrong

Flex School principal Karen Wessel congratulates the 2011 graduating class at commencement ceremonies Monday night at Land's End Resort as they prepare to throw their mortars into the audience. From left to right are Daniel Franklin, Michael Hedges, Ruby Quarton, Eileen Takak, Tiffany Tesar and Jessica White.

Guest speakers: Flex School principal Karen Wessel; faculty Chris Brown, Alex Koplin and Jeff Szarzi; Kenai Peninsula Borough School Board Vice-president Liz Downing; families and friends.

Graduates: Seven on program with one student absent in the commencement ceremony, 5 p.m. Monday, May 23.

Scholarships and awards: Tiffany Tesar, University of Alaska Scholar, $11,000; Daniel Franklin, Masonic Outstanding Student Award.


Flex School Principal Karen Wessel: "These students will be so missed because they have so much of the community behind them."

Chris Brown, Flex School teacher: "It's your determination and perseverance that has allowed you to succeed. ... As Garrison Keilor says, 'Be well, do good work and keep in touch.'"

Alex Koplin, Flex School teacher, after presenting gifts to each student, including a Triumph brand pen: "These kids have all triumphed. ... All these people make me proud."

Jeff Szarzi, teacher: "It's been awesome to see them grow up — to hit walls of adversity and knock them down."

Retired Flex School teacher Nancy Vait, who gave each student a yellow rose: "You have overcome obstacles, each one of you — and you've won."