Blount Home Education Associate students showcased their talents and celebrated their achievements as the school year came to a close. BHEA elementary and middle school theater classes joined forces to perform “The AristoCats Kids.” In extravagant costumes and full faces of makeup, students were transformed into cats, dogs, geese and mice. The comedic and high energy show was held for two showings on Friday, May 4, at Everett Hills Baptist Church.

The musical “Into the Woods Jr.” was performed the following week, on May 9 and 10, at Second Harvest Food Bank. The modern tale incorporates characters from classic fairy tales to weave a story filled with twist, turns and surprises. Meredith Hoffman, said her rookie season was one she will cherish. “I loved singing and dancing with this fantastic cast of friends,” Hoffman said. Both shows were well attended with approximately 900 total tickets sold.

“Pomp and Circumstance” proudly resounded, at Everett Hills Baptist church, as BHEA celebrated the graduation of some of it’s members from both kindergarten and high school. On May 5, 31 children donned purple robes to walk the aisle and celebrate their success! BHEA Kindergarten graduation was a memorable event; complete with the giving of mock diplomas, a video presentation and a festive summer-themed reception.

On May 18, the BHEA High School graduation ceremony paid tribute to 37 homeschooled students who had successfully completed the requirements for high school graduation as outlined by their individual umbrella schools. Before the ceremony began, attendees were treated to a slideshow that looked back on the graduates’ home school careers. Highlights of the ceremony included a vocal duet by Hannah Bergquist and Ella Evans, and Morgan Hoffman who sang and accompanied himself on guitar. Kassidi McDannel, Bailee Phagan and Jackson Rader took the stage to give speeches that reflected on their experiences in BHEA.

The commencement address was given by Dr. Randy Small, a professor at the University of Tennessee, BHEA Boy Scout Troop 442 Scoutmaster, and BHEA father. He used scouting principles as a guide to navigating what lies ahead for the graduates and told them to seek out adventure throughout their life. Once the address was given, Dr. Small presented the “BHEA Outstanding Senior Scholarship.” The $500 competitive scholarship is awarded to the BHEA student who has shown through academics, community service, and extracurricular activities that his life reflects the essence of BHEA.

This year, due to a tie, both Morgan Hoffman and Danny Lawson were each awarded $500 to be used to further their educations. Afterward, parents of the graduates stepped onstage to symbolically present diplomas to their students.

A reception was held following the ceremony. Guests enjoyed refreshments as they looked at the Senior Tables, which commemorated each students school career and highlighted future plans.

For some students this graduation was a bittersweet goodbye to friends and family, as they planned to move across the state or even out state to pursue their college educations. Almost 700 friends and family were in attendance to wish the students well as they begin the next chapter of their lives.

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