New Horizons graduation

Taylor Thompson, right, shakes the hand of Deputy Superintendent Mike Markoe during the graduation ceremony Thursday for New Horizons Academy. The five-week summer school program is a partnership between Frederick County Public Schools and the Student Homelessness Initiative Partnership of Frederick County.

The nearly 60 students who walked across the Frederick High School auditorium stage Thursday morning had much in common.

They spent the past five weeks earning credit toward graduation, and at some point in the past school year, each of them experienced homelessness.

Follow Mary Grace Keller on Twitter: @MaryGraceKeller

(8) comments


Great, we are now paying under achievers to take summer school.


I don't think being a kid facing the challenges of homelessness qualifies them as "underachievers:, AOC. As the old saying goes, "Walk a mile in their shoes".


"Students were fed breakfast, lunch and snacks and given dinner to take home." If you are homeless where do you take dinner home to?

Gabe, my point was the attendees are all FCPS students. Schools are closed for the summer if you have to take classes during the summer why else would it be needed other than to catch up? Why are they deserving a $600.00 stipend? If the students are homeless where are their parents and family that are not housing them? In the case of one student the mother and brother were in the audience, huh? A personal story, while I passed a class, my parents didn't think I achieved the necessary grade. I was told I would be attended summer school; like it or not; they were right it was best and got a good grade. FCPS never provided breakfast, lunch and dinner or provide transportation. I rode my bicycle (it was only uphill in one direction) [smile]

It is regretful the FNP does not provide more information about the program. Maybe it has some hidden value. But without information, simply on available information, it looks like a giveaway program.

A graduation from summer school, amazing!


They were homeless “at some point” - such as a house fire - that affected their ability to attend school, focus on school, or meet requirements. Obstacles not facing others. 🙄


I understand your position, AOC. But this wasn’t traditional “summer school” where you make up a class you failed. This was essentially an “Academy” that each of these kids voluntarily attended in order to get a “leg up” that they needed because of their homelessness. They took multiple classes. Where did they go after school to eat dinner? A myriad of places, including shelters, friends or neighbors homes, or a car. Yes, whole families can temporarily live in such places. I’ve seen it for myself. There are actually “working poor” homeless folks, working a job but unable to afford a permanent roof. The kids should not have to suffer because of their parent’s inability to adequately provide for them. Teaching kids to have ambition, to work for what they need, or want, and envision a positive future for themselves is a positive step in breaking the cycle of homelessness, and potential lives of crime. The one young lady simply had the bad luck of her family home burning down during the holidays. It is these kinds of kids that I provide as much support as I possibly can.


Not to be a downer, but I know from experience that 4K does not go far toward a degree at Hood these days.

Jim Hartley

Be kind. Everyone you meet is carrying a heavy burden. Especially these kids.


Congratulations to all!

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it clean. No vulgar, racist, sexist or sexually-oriented language.
Engage ideas. This forum is for the exchange of ideas, not personal attacks or ad hominem criticisms.
Be civil. Don't threaten. Don't lie. Don't bait. Don't degrade others.
No trolling. Stay on topic.
No spamming. This is not the place to sell miracle cures.
No deceptive names. Apparently misleading usernames are not allowed.
Say it once. No repetitive posts, please.
Help us. Use the 'Report' link for abusive posts.

Thank you for reading!

Please log in, or sign up for a new account and purchase a subscription to read or post comments.