THS seniors parade through city’s schools

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

ALABASTER – Although some of them will be attending Thompson High School next year, students at Thompson Middle School still showed the level of enthusiasm usually showcased at the city’s elementary schools as members of the Thompson High School Class of 2018 paraded through the TMS hallways on the morning of May 4.

Wearing their recently acquired caps and gowns, the upcoming graduates were all smiles as they continued a three-year Alabaster City Schools tradition by visiting TMS, Thompson Intermediate School, Thompson Sixth Grade Center, Creek View Elementary School and Meadow View Elementary School throughout the day.

“It’s become such a tradition that the students really expect it, not just the seniors but the younger grades as well,” said THS Principal Dr. Wesley Hester. “It adds an incentive for them to work hard and strive for that milestone in their lives. It’s another way to make it a K through 12 mindset in Alabaster City Schools.

“This event has exceeded our expectations year after year,” Hester added.

This year brought some changes to the schedule the parade of graduates has followed the past few years, as the seniors usually start at the elementary schools and work their way upward. Instead, this year’s event started at the school the seniors attended most recently before going to THS.

The day is usually filled with a range of emotions, as the seniors get to visit with many of the teachers who helped them through the years, and it allows the teachers to see the final product of their hard work.

This year’s parade also served to honor the memory of THS senior Camryn Callaway, who died in a distracted driving accident on Interstate 65 earlier this year. Seniors who would have walked alongside Callaway in the parade carried a photo of her next to her cap and gown wrapped in a purple ribbon.

Seeing the graduates served as a tangible inspiration for the students who will one day be in their shoes, said TMS Principal Neely Woodley.

“All of our students have the goal of graduating, so to see their fellow students attain that goal, it’s very motivating for them,” Woodley said.