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Leland: Lathrop High’s 340 grads lived up to Spartan school motto
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Riley Stromgren was one of two valedictorians for the Lathrop High Class of 2023. Amanpreet Singh Atwal shared the honors.

Greg Leland praised Lathrop High’s Class of 2023 for being able to adapt.

The soon-to-be-retiring principal of the school mentioned that at Thursday’s graduation ceremony at Bennie Gatto Field that the pandemic was a testament of that.

“COVID took us out of your comfort zone. But we adapted – we learned to be flexible,” Leland said to the 340 plus seniors.

This Lathrop High class, he added, embodied the school’s SHIELD motto: Spartans Honor, Integrity, Engagement, Leadership, Determination.

The special event included Elias Palmer of the school’s JROTC program leading in the Pledge of Allegiance, with the LHS Band under the direction of Desiree Bugarin performing The Star-Spangled Banner.

Omar Amin and Jerico Santillan, who served as ASB Presidents, gave welcoming speeches.

Javen Ceralde, Camryn Hayes, and Ajah Smith also spoke in front of the jam-packed stadium in their presidents’ speech.

Riley Stromgren and Amanpreet Singh Atwal shared the valedictorian honors. The latter was too ill to speak. Instead, counselor Lisa Wilson delivered Atwal’s message.

Sanah Sunner was the salutatorian. She and Stromgren gave their graduation speeches.

Former administrators Bill PInol and Martha Dent were among the special guests.

Besides Leland, several LHS staff members are also retiring. Included are Science teacher Bonita Hamilton and Family & Consumer Service instructor Erlinda Selga.