Saline County High School honors class of 2010 at May 13 ceremony

Thursday, May 20, 2010
Brock Outstanding Students of the Year at Saline County High School were presented with $200 and plaques to mark the honor Thursday, May 13, at the SCHS graduation ceremony. Above left, SCHS Director Derek Lark presents the award to Zeke Hopkins of Marshall High School while SCHS teacher Shirley Fox looks on. Above right, Lark presents the award to Jordan Schlep of Sweet Springs High School. (Eric Crump/Democrat-News)

Saline County High School Director Derek Lark delivered concise advice to seniors during the graduation ceremony Thursday, May 13. His remarks, edited slightly for length:

1. When you make a mistake -- own it. Do not imprison yourself by trying to defend a mistake. A problem never goes away until you take responsibility for it.

2. Remember that trust is very hard to earn and very easy to lose.

3. Giving favors feels much better than receiving favors.

Saline County High School staff members for the 2009-2010 school year were recognized during graduation ceremonies Thursday, May 13. From left, Terri Hart, English teacher; Chris Blakely, science teacher; Shirley Fox, social studies teacher; Julia Riley, secretary; Diana Finley, paraprofessional; and Linda Simmons, math teacher. (Eric Crump/Democrat-News)

4. Don't be lazy. Anybody can be successful as long as they're willing to work hard at something.

5. Be respectful.

6. You always have a choice. You can let others influence you negatively or positively; choose to be around those that are positive.

7. Be polite and courteous. It's a "cool" thing to do.

8. Learn to be the first to say "I'm sorry," especially with friends and family. Don't let pride ruin something that's much more important.

9. Never forget the Golden Rule: "Treat others as you wish to be treated."

10. The Serenity Prayer can answer a lot of tough questions for you: "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things that I can and the wisdom to know the difference."

Following his comments, the two Brock Outstanding Student awards were presented. The $200 award is given each year by a fund set up by former SCHS director Bruce Brock and his wife, Linda, in memory of Jimmy Brock.

"This is for somebody who's had a good attitude, shows a lot of effort, had good attendance; ... someone who exemplifies what we're looking for," Lark said.

Recipients this year were Zeke Hopkins of Marshall High School and Jordan Schelp of Sweet Springs High School.

The Saline County High School class of 2010 included Marvin Enrique Alvarez, Marissa Leenee Baylark, Shawn Beck, Tarrance Justin Blackmore, Damien Lee Brown, Chris Clevenger, Samantha Renee Crutchfield, Jared Wayne Day, Samantha Marie Evans, Teri Lynn Fisher, Jessica Caroline Fizer, Chaz Graves, Danielle Louise Gray, Alex Harding, Danielle Holman, Ezekiel Lloyd "Zeke" Hopkins, Jayron Hughes, William Joseph James, John Michael Johnson, Jillian Kolstad, Jaime Medina, Austin Myers, Tevin Lee Parker, Nick Peeples, Jordan Schelp, Anthon Smith, Andy Enrique Suarez, Alejandro Tapia, Kasandra Louise Wansing and Donny Wilson.

Lark introduced and thanked the staff for their hard work. He noted that Terri Hart, Linda Simmons and Diana Finley are retiring, although Finley plans to continue working part time for the school. Secretary Julia Riley is moving to Eastwood Elementary School.

Remaining teachers Chris Blakely and Shirley Fox will pick up the additional subjects to account for the staff departures, Lark said, and the school will operate without a secretary.

Although it will be with a smaller staff, Lark expressed relief that the school would continue. He said state budget cuts had cast some doubt on whether the future of SCHS.

Contact Eric Crump at

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