Lynwood – Lynwood High School graduate Kiara Johnson, having just received her diploma along with 64 other Lynwood Unified School District students during the summer commencement ceremony, is one step closer to fulfilling a longstanding promise to her grandmother of obtaining a master’s degree.

Johnson, who plans to attend Santa Monica College in the fall and ultimately get her master’s at USC, is on the road to becoming a child psychologist after walking with her classmates to celebrate completion of high school.

The July 20 event was held at the Marco Antonio Firebaugh High School gymnasium and honored the academic achievements of students from Firebaugh, Lynwood, Vista high schools and Pathway Independent Studies.

Lynwood Unified Superintendent Gudiel R. Crosthwaite was in attendance and addressed the scores of friends and family members who cheered on their graduates. Lynwood graduate Luis Ponce was among those recognized, and plans to become an engineer.

“It felt great to have my friends and family here to support me,” Ponce said. “I was very motivated to finish and continue with my education.”

A great number of these students graduated and are now moving on to college because of credit recovery. Lynwood Unified’s credit recovery system provides students with the opportunity to take or retake courses over summer that are required for graduation.

Vista High School and Pathway Independent Studies provides students with the option to enroll in a comprehensive summer school program, in which classes are held four days a week, or independent study, in which students work at home and attend classes two days a week to assess their progress.

“We’re very proud to see so many of our students thrive and move forward to the next phase of their lives,” Crosthwaite said. “The commitment and perseverance our graduates have displayed throughout their journey is going to lead them to future success in college and career.”

The summer commencement adds to the District’s 2017 graduation numbers, with 24 students from Firebaugh, 23 from Lynwood and 18 from Vista. The District’s graduation rate for the 2015-16 school year was 83.7 percent.

“Congratulations to our 2017 summer commencement graduates,” Lynwood Unified Board President Alma-Delia Renteria said. “It’s always an amazing sight to see our students graduate and know that their time at Lynwood Unified has given them the tools they need to succeed in any path they choose.”


080317_LUSD_SUMMERGRADS1: Lynwood Unified honored summer graduates from Firebaugh, Lynwood, Vista high schools and Pathway Independent Studies on July 20.

080317_LUSD_SUMMERGRADS2: The Lynwood Unified summer commencement on July 20 added to the District’s strong 2017 graduation numbers. The District’s graduation rate for the 2015-16 school year was 83.7 percent.