May you live all the days of your life. This wise advice by Jonathan Swift was said more than two centuries ago but still effective and was selected as the motto for the Friendswood Independent School District’s Class of 2014.

The class of 496 graduates walked the stage of the Don Coleman Community Coliseum in Spring Branch on June 7.

The class colors were royal blue, and the water lily as the class flower. The class song was “It’s Time,” by Imagine Dragons.

The valedictorian was Derek Janak, and the salutatorian was Roma Pradhan. Class officers include President Samantha McHenry, Vice President Maddie Ehrlich, Secretary Kelly Pitman and Treasurer Noel Kutz.

Seniors were offered about $8 million in scholarship funds with close to $5 million dollars accepted. Often, several schools will offer scholarships, but students can only attend one school at a time and accept their funding, letting the other offers go.

In the district, 97 percent of all students will attend higher institutions of learning after high school. This year, seniors have chosen not only Texas schools but also Vasser, Cornell, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Georgia Tech, George Washington University, University of Florida, University of Pennsylvania, Mississippi State, U.S. Air Force Academy and University of Alabama, to name a few.

The year for seniors was an incredible one. Clubs, organizations and special programs advanced to state and national competitions, bringing home many awards. Every varsity sports team went into the playoffs, and all but one team went past the first round of the playoffs. The Academic Decathlon Team was named state champions, and six of the nine members on the team competed nationally in Hawaii. Hats off — and in the air of graduation caps — to the Class of 2014. FISD looks forward to the many success stories our alumni will send us.

Looking forward, excitement is in the air regarding new ways, new technology and new ideas for 2014-15.

The district’s school board approved June 9 at its regular meeting a $1.5 million investment in new teaching tools. In the fall, math K-8 and science K-12 will be provided with classroom sets of iPads and iPad minis (elementary) and Chromebooks for grades second or third and above. Charging carts and the wireless infrastructure to support their use are also part of the funding.

District parents and community members are being introduced to new technology as they reserve their season tickets and parking passes for Mustang varsity football games. Using TicketTracker, fans are going online to reserve and pay for the season.

The “tickets” will no longer look like a game ticket with one for each person for each game. The new plastic credit card-like ticket will be scanned at the stadium gates and reused for several years. Fans have until 4 p.m. July 10 to go to www.friendswood to reserve tickets.

Karolyn Gephart is director of communications for Friends-wood ISD.


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