“We want to let students, their parents and their community know that we are here to support them along the way. We are all in this together,” said Karla Sandoval, Wunsche Academy Coordinator. “During this commemorative event students make a commitment to graduate on time in four years and also to excel in all their endeavors.”
The Wunsche Class of 2019 will be the first graduating class to walk the stage since the academy became a campus of accountability early last year. Previous classes graduated from one of the district’s three comprehensive high schools with a notation on their diploma that they had attended Wunsche.
Wunsche personnel developed the Reverse Graduation to emphasize the skills and habits of freshmen students that will not only ensure they finish high school in four years, but will also give them a competitive edge as they pursue their postsecondary goals. Additionally, through this commemoration, Wunsche teachers and administrators pledged to assist all students and their parents in their pursuit of academic success.
The ultimate goal of the Reverse Graduation is to keep graduation in the forefront of the student’ minds, and not to replace their senior graduation, which comes upon the completion of the course requirements mandated by the state of Texas.
This event was also a way of offering the freshmen yet another opportunity to experience the many great programs and events at Wunsche. The academy – a school of choice in Spring ISD – has been a leader in providing Spring ISD students with access to Career and Technical Education (CTE) career pathways, real-world experience, rigorous coursework, and mentorship and internship opportunities since its start in 2006.
The Wunsche Reverse Graduation was also a chance for freshmen to hear first hand from former students who have been in their shoes. “It was a very special night because it was run by their fellow peers and former Wunsche alumni, going back to the first generation of students from 2006. It was truly a memorable event,” Sandoval said.
The alumni offered words of advice to the current generation at Wunsche about what it takes to succeed in high school and go on to college. Common words that resonated across the cafeteria the night of the event were “dedication, opportunities and support” – all key to what the alumni experienced while attending Wunsche.
Some of those former students include Kiara Davis who graduated in 2007 from Spring ISD and attended Texas State University. Davis was part of the generation that started many of the traditions at Wunsche. She was selected as the first ever Miss Wunsche High School and is currently in her sixth year as a teacher for Spring ISD.
“Wunsche taught me the value of networking and being able to communicate ideas effectively by treating me as a professional and not just a student,” said Davis. “I am grateful for the tremendous opportunities that Wunsche offered me and my peers. I was part of a great and outstanding culture that values students, and now I am proudly teaching in the same community.”
Carl Wunsche Sr. High School is a nationally-acclaimed school that provides students with access to Career and Technical Education programs, real-world experience, rigorous coursework and mentor and internship opportunities. This year the academy was expanded to include ninth graders. Wunsche students get a head start on their post-secondary education by earning college articulated credit; and over 600 certifications were earned by Wunsche students last school year.