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A rural Texas high school postpones graduation after only 5 seniors meet graduation requirements

By Chris Boyette and Zoe Sottile, CNN

(CNN) — A small high school in rural Texas has postponed its graduation ceremony after an end-of-year review revealed only five of the school’s 33 seniors had met the requirements to graduate, according to the school district’s superintendent.

“Marlin High School has announced that high school graduation will be rescheduled for June,” the Marlin Independent School District said in a letter posted on Facebook. “The decision by the high school to postpone graduation will provide more time for students to meet necessary requirements for graduation.”

Many students at the school, which is about 25 miles southeast of Waco, “did not meet requirements due to attendance or grades,” the letter stated.

The school district added in the notice that it has “affirmed its commitment to providing necessary resources and support for students.”

Superintendent Darryl Henson called a mandatory meeting for parents of seniors last week.

“The state of Texas has guidelines for graduation,” Henson said at the Wednesday meeting. “This is not a dance floor. … It’s not a homecoming pep rally. This is graduation.”

After students worked this week to make up classroom hours and assignments, 17 additional students were made eligible for graduation in June, according to Henson.

The community planned an informal graduation ceremony to celebrate the seniors at a church Thursday, the day the students were originally meant to graduate, according to CNN affiliate KWTX. Some family members flew in from as far as Mexico for the canceled graduation and would be unable to make a second trip for the rescheduled ceremony in June, KWTX reported.

According to Marlin High Schools’ Texas Schools report card, 98.7% of the school’s students come from an economically disadvantaged background. A total of 229 students were enrolled at the school in the 2021-2022 school year.

The Marlin Independent School District serves 880 students in Marlin, Texas, along the Brazos River.

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