Let Anthony Cruz Walk with the class of 2017

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Hey everyone. I need our entire class's help with something, and I need to share with you a story. Please just read: Anthony Cruz is one of our classmates, and if you don't know him, he is the kindest, most honorable person you could ever meet. To preface, Anthony failed his 9th grade year, and since then has worked tirelessly to earn all of his credits to be able to graduate alongside us. And he did just that. Anthony earned all of his credits, but administration denied him walking at graduation because it is a "senior privilege" (This is hypocritical because the same situation has happened to other students who did not pass, earned their credits, and are now graduating) After that, Anthony and his mother plead to administration, his mother in grief because she wouldn't be able to see her first born and her only son graduate. It was here that Mrs. Cosentino blackmailed Anthony the first time, implying that if he did not comply, his final paper in one of his classes not be graded, impacting his grade significantly. He was absolutely crushed. He was defeated. They told him to pick up his diploma on Monday and that was that. As all of his friends went up to collect their caps and gowns, Anthony watched in defeat knowing all his closest friends would walk and he wouldn't. And then he heard, "Is there an Anthony Cruz?" And there was his cap and gown!!!! All of us celebrated with him. He came home and his mother's​ grief was replaced with over flowing joy. We had won. He had won. Or had he? When he stepped on the field Wednesday morning for practice, he was not given a seat. He was not in the graduation ceremony. And what's more, when rehearsal is happening, the technical assistants play through the names and pictures of the graduates on the scoreboard. They showed Anthony's name and his picture. He was on their roster, but someone in administration made the conscious decision to pull his name from the seating. It was later that Mrs. Cosentino told Anthony and his mother that administration wanted the cap and gown back. After that, Cosentino left a threatening voicemail to Anthony's mom, stating that there would be disciplinary repurcussions for continuing to fight the matter, and that he wouldn't be able to even go to graduation to be an audience member. Anthony's family had outside sources try to handle the matter, to which administration said they would meet and give a decision Friday morning. Nervously waiting until the MORNING OF graduation, Anthony received his answer. Denied. The emotional limbo he, and his family and loves ones have had to endure is the most insulting thing I have ever seen. Our administration is doing such a disservice to one of its most amazing students. Anthony has no disciplinary record. He is kind, intelligent, and driven. He is our brother in this class. This year, the class of 2017 has been described as leaders of change. Our student council and all of our class mates incited change for prom and stood up to administration when something was clearly wrong, and I ask all of you to help uphold this legacy we have created, and do it again. I need your help and I cannot do it alone. If there is any hope left of having Anthony walk, it is with all of us joining together.



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