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New York school valedictorian never missed a day of school

Ashanti Palmer (Photo courtesy: Mount Vernon City School District)
Posted at 11:08 AM, Jun 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-26 11:08:06-04

MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. - One outstanding student at Nellie A. Thornton High School in New York was not only the valedictorian, she also never missed a day of school.

Ashanti Palmer, a graduating senior was in the Performing & Visual Arts Magnet Program and was the school’s valedictorian for the Class of 2020.

The Mount Vernon City School District said Palmer achieved perfect attendance for the entirety of her educational experience in the Mount Vernon City School District, beginning in Pre-K and culminating in her senior year of high school!

Palmer also earned multiple scholarships totaling more than $430,000 to cover expenses for her four-year pursuit of a biomedical engineering degree at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), the school district said.

“Ashanti’s achievements in the Mount Vernon schools have been nothing short of remarkable,” said Dr. Kenneth R. Hamilton, Mount Vernon City School District Superintendent. “We strive to ensure our students graduate from here college- and career-ready, and Ashanti is a testament to that goal. Her perfect attendance record throughout her many years in the District have helped build a foundation of academic excellence that she will utilize in the next chapter as a student of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.”

“Being named valedictorian feels good because it shows that all the hard work I’ve put in over the years has paid off, and that effort is being celebrated in a big way,” said Palmer. “In terms of my perfect attendance, it wasn’t something that I sought out. I knew that showing up to school every day was important, because even missing one day can set you back. It wasn’t until 10th grade that I realized I hadn’t missed a day, and then I wanted to keep up the streak.”

Palmer's speech was broadcasted in the morning of June 20. Search "Mount Vernon High School 2020 Graduation Ceremony" on YouTube to check it out.