WEYMOUTH − Beverly Morimoto said she always cared about her education, but growing up in a small village in Guyana as one of six children, her parents were more concerned about farming and needed help at home to support the family.
“When we went to school and stayed a long time, we were told we were lazy and we were supposed to be working at home,” Morimoto, 30, said. “I didn’t go to school every day and eventually I dropped out because I needed to support myself and get out from under my parents’ roof.”
Morimoto met her future husband, Justin, in her village in 2012 while working as a librarian. She moved to the United States in 2014, and they got married and had three children. But she never lost her desire to finish her education. After some research and help from her husband led her to Weymouth Evening High School, Morimoto enrolled in the program.
Three years later, she is the Class of 2023 valedictorian.
“I was shocked. I couldn’t believe it,” she said of the news she topped her class. “I was pinching myself and I couldn’t sleep. I’m expecting to wake up out of this dream.”
Morimoto is one of 38 people from nine towns who received a diploma through Weymouth Evening High School this year.
The program, which started at Weymouth High in 1977, provides a path to graduation for students who left high school. The school offers more than a dozen classes at night, accommodating students with jobs, families and other responsibilities. More than 1,700 students have completed the program since its inception.
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"This night school has been a great experience for me because everyone from the staff to my fellow students made learning exciting and fun," Morimoto said. "I want to believe that this program really worked for me because I put in the effort to learn new things. I had teachers who challenged me, and I challenged myself."
Weymouth Evening High School Director Michele Prendergast said students face a rigorous curriculum, strict attendance policies and high expectations from their teachers. Most students go on to community college, pursue a trade or join the military, all of which require a high school diploma.
Prendergast said the evening high school offers students ages 16 and up a second chance at pursuing a high school education.
"How many of us have wished for a second chance in life, only never to have that wish brought to fruition?" she said.
Prendergast quoted Benjamin Franklin in her speech and said, "Well done is better than well said," or actions speak louder than words.
"The 2023 graduates have taken Franklin's words to heart. Their actions over the past academic semesters have earned them their high school diplomas," she said. "Their journeys have often not been easy ones."
The Class of 2023
Abington − Tyler Fitts, Nicholas Noun.
Brockton − Austin Chadwell.
Hingham − Dylan Holbrook.
Holbrook − Iyana Fontes.
Marshfield − Jesse Malaguti, Riley Peloquin, Nolan Sypek.
Norwell − Jude Coppenrath.
Rockland − Kristian Garzon.
Weymouth − Victoria Bandeira, Jace Benton, Kendra-Joy Buckley, James Cain, Maggie Connor, Ryan Curtis, Dylan Foster, Matthew Goncalves, Samantha Grady, Elijah Hallifax, Isabella Hemphill, Dayvia Johnson, Jordyn Jones, Ariana Keane, Steven Legere, Madan Mahadeo, James McKinnon, Beverly Morimoto, Madeline O’Shea, Olivia Petitti, Sierra Puente, Mason Ryan, Camille Sabbag, Joshua Sanchez-Hoppie, Nicholas Tucci, Gustavo De Azevedo Velita, Maldica Wilson.
Whitman − Mekhyah Rosa.
Author :Jessica Trufant
Source Url :https://www.newsbreak.com/weymouth-ma/3035974794339-weymouth-evening-high-school-graduates-38-students-a-second-chance-in-life
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