FlexTech High School says farewell to the Class of 2015

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Preston Zacharias delivers one of the commencement addresses during FlexTech High School’s graduation ceremony. Zacharias earned a full-tuition scholarship to Central Michigan University.

Brighton charter school holds commencement exercises

FlexTech High School in Brighton said goodbye to 51 seniors on June 5, as the Class of 2015 held its commencement exercises.

A charter high school that opened in 2011, FlexTech offers project-based learning in a blended-learning environment. The school has become a success in a short amount of time, as Principal Melanie Laber noted at the ceremony that FlexTech already has a waiting list for the 2015-2016 school year.

This year’s graduating class was historic – the first class to have students go through all four years at FlexTech. The freshmen who entered the school during its first year in 2011 were the seniors who graduated this month.

State Rep. Lana Theis (R-Brighton Township) delivered the commencement address, telling the graduates, “I love this school and what it stands for, and what it’s done for our community and for our students.”

“FlexTech has taught you how to think critically, how to adapt to your environment and how to solve problems,” Theis said. “These skills will serve you well as you work to achieve your goals. You’ve chosen the road less traveled so far. I’d recommend you choose that path moving forward, as well. The freeway of life, while well-worn, rarely takes someone to a destination of greatness.”

Three graduating seniors also spoke at the commencement, and each of them spoke of how FlexTech’s innovative learning environment turned out to be the perfect fit for them.

Preston Zacharias said he chose FlexTech because he wanted to move faster academically.

“For me, being able to move at my own pace and complete courses in my own style were the two main reasons that I chose to come to FlexTech,” Zacharias said. “After 10 years of being bored with the curriculum and being trapped inside of it, I felt that I had had enough. I decided to make a transition to something better.”

Zacharias ended up earning 23 college credits while at FlexTech, and won a full-tuition scholarship to Central Michigan University. He’ll enroll in CMU’s Honors College this fall.

Parker Mazure, another graduate, spoke of the fond memories he’ll carry with him from FlexTech.

“I’ve made potato cannons and I’ve written essays,” Mazure said. “I’ve given speeches and I’ve painted pictures. And they have been the best moments of my life.”

The final student speaker was Amelia Moorehouse, a high-level competitive gymnast who was part of FlexTech’s first freshmen class in 2011. Laber introduced Moorehouse by saying, “I feel as though our school was tailor-made for her,” pointing out that she was able to excel both academically and athletically because of FlexTech’s innovative approach.

Moorehouse who will be studying psychology and competing on the gymnastics team at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire in the fall, spoke of the changes she’s seen at FlexTech since her freshman year.

“It was nothing like any high school I had ever seen before, and I think that’s probably what drew me to it,” Moorehouse said. “The different approach to education, the project-based learning and the technology. But what kept me here is all of you – the wonderful people and teachers I’ve met during my four years at FlexTech. And I know that years from now, it won’t be the building I remember the most, it will be the people – the friends I’ve made and the teachers who’ve inspired me and pushed me. That’s what FlexTech will always be to me.”

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