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Wapato high school uses 'Grad Walk' to inspire younger students to graduate

Wapato high school uses 'Grad Walk' to inspire younger students.

WAPATO, Wash.- Graduation music filled the falls of Adams Elementary school this morning.

But it wasn't for the fifth graders moving on to middle school. It was for Wapato high seniors parading through the halls.

Celebrating the fact that they made it. They finished high school.

“It makes me really happy because you know that they look up to you and you know that you're not just doing it for yourself. You're doing it for all of them also,” Senior Jessica Moreno said.

This is the third year the Wapato school district has had a grad walk.

Principal Eric Diener said they use the walk to inspire kids in elementary school to keep working toward their own high school graduation.

There siblings telling them I want to be just like you and it sticks with them.

He said their graduating class is about 180 students this year.

Wapato high school has had one of the best graduation rates in the valley over the last five years and Diener said this is a small part in keeping that streak going.

“Our graduation rates are averaging over 90 percent. Graduation from high school is extremely important to our community so this is another way for us to say thank you,” he said.

Moreno said she feels like a celebrity walking through her former schools.

It took a lot of work for her to get here and said she only has one piece of advice for future graduates in the Wapato school district.

“I would say to not give up no matter what. It gets hard, really hard. And it's only going to get harder so for them to not give up,” Moreno said.

The Wapato high school graduates are set to move their tassels from right to left on June 12 at the Sun Dome.

Deiner said they're on pace to have another ninety percent graduation rate this year as well.

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