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Minarets Mustangs Wild Wonderful Year

O’NEALS – According to one of the main tenets of the school’s philosophy, Minarets students “will possess 21st century workplaces skills: creativity, critical thinking, communication and collaboration.”

That philosophy was in evidence throughout the academic year 2012-13 at Minarets High School and Minarets Charter School, particularly during the last weeks leading up to graduation, as students performed yeoman’s work together, bringing about lasting positive change to their beloved campus.

Lyric Piccolotti and Jo Jo sing a song from Tangled on the last day of school. Lyric is off to LA for the Great American Songbook Competition - 2013 - Minarets MediaLyric Piccolotti, who will be a junior when school resumes, was named a finalist in the Great American Songbook High School Vocal Academy and Competition. The program is dedicated solely to music from Broadway, Hollywood musicals and the Tin Pan Alley era of the early to mid-twentieth century.

The competition was created to provide an opportunity for young people to experience the cultural significance of this sort of American music firsthand.

Girls Volleyball wins Overall Team of the Year at the Minarets Sports Awards - Courtesy Minarets Media

At Minarets Sports Awards night, Mustangs Girls Varsity Volleyball won Team of the Year after taking Division V Central Section 2012-2013 as the first-ever Valley CIF Champs. CIF is the California Interscholastic Federation, committed to developing athletes of character.

AJ Holt and Paul La Spadas new Minarets Front Entrance is installed before graduation 2013 - Courtesy Minarets Media

A.J. Holt’s Senior Legacy Project is a perfect example of vision and follow-through. Also known as the Senior Legacy Experience, students prepare for graduate work in an area of both personal and professional interest to benefit their campus, community or both.

Minarets new entrance sign is up thanks to graduating seniors AJ Holt and Paul La Spada as well as Mr. Joey Silva - Courtesy Minarets Media

Holt, with help from Paul La Spada, created and installed a new entrance sign for Minarets that bid students goodbye for graduation and will welcome them again as summer school starts, and once more in the fall. Joey Silva was also instrumental in the success of Holt’s project.

As graduation night approached, the trend toward customized mortar boards, also known as grad caps, hit Minarets students with stunning results.

Minarets Valedictorian Dee Reiner shows off her customized grad cap - Courtesy Minarets Media

One of the two Minarets Valedictorians, Dee Reiner, showed off her custom grad cap as the night they’ve all been waiting for beckoned.

The other Valedictorian was Brett Hendrickson. His “Sponge Bob” speech is available on Vimeo.

Minarets Graduation 2013 wraps up - Courtesy of Minarets Media

Finally, with Minarets Principal Mike Niehoff and Charter Director Jon Corippo standing beside officials, teachers and support staff, 77 students comprising the Mustangs Class of 2013, graduated on Thursday, June 6. The mood was upbeat and emotional, with frequent bouts of laughter – along with music – punctuating the proceedings.

Minarets is considered to be a “new type of high school for a new type of learner,” where 21st century digital technology assists students in crafting a project-based, career oriented education of their own design.

Minarets Josh Dowell and Superintendent Bob Nelson - 2013 - Minarets Media

The plan for Minarets is apparently working, as students, teachers, staff and parents finished out a stupendous year and engaged in a memorable commencement ceremony that was the perfect springboard into the future, for all concerned.

Watch Minarets Graduation

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