Hundreds graduate from Bloomfield, CYB, Kirtland Central, Aztec

Megan Petersen
Farmington Daily Times
Bloomfield High School graduate Micaela Olivas gets a final adjustments from her sister Rachel before Friday's graduation ceremony.

FARMINGTON — Several hundred more high school seniors from across the Four Corners received their diplomas in graduation ceremonies tonight.

Bloomfield, Kirtland Central and Aztec high schools held graduation ceremonies tonight on their campus, according to information provided by the schools in advance of the ceremonies. Charlie Y. Brown High School also held a graduation ceremony at BHS this morning, and New Mexico Virtual Academy graduates were celebrated in a ceremony today in Albuquerque.

Bloomfield High School celebrated 199 graduates in a ceremony on the school’s football field tonight. The ceremony began with Alexandria Salazar’s performance of the national anthem and an invocation or opening prayer by Robert Kropf.

Bloomfield School District Superintendent Kim Mizell welcomed attendees, and Bloomfield Principal Chad Burkholder introduced guests. The district's director of federal programs, Patricia Marquez, presented six seniors with bilingual seals.

Bloomfield High School graduates Christian King, left, Jedidiah Yazzie, Steven Gonzalez and Cody Laughlin share a laugh in the gym before their commencement ceremony Friday.

Valedictorian Elena Florez and salutatorian Nolan McKim addressed the crowd before Burkholder presented the graduates and assistant principal Jarly Lopez pronounced the graduates.

Kenzie Massaro led the seniors in the ring and tassel ceremony before Kropf gave the benediction, or closing prayer, and Burkholder presented the class of 2018.

Charlie Y. Brown High School celebrated 24 graduates at a ceremony at BHS this morning, and an additional seven CYB graduates participated in the BHS graduation ceremony. Ashlee Daniels performed the national anthem before CYB Principal Adam Benevidez welcomed the crowd and Ryan Robertson gave the invocation.

Edwin Deguzman of the U.S. Navy delivered the keynote speech, and Alia Pacheco led the flower ceremony. Valedictorian Kathleen Eckland addressed the crowd, and salutatorian Jeffery Bonnie was recognized.

Bryce Betoni gave a thank-you speech before Benevidez and Bloomfield School District school board President Dale Maes presented the graduates with their diplomas and Mizell confirmed the graduates.

Kirtland Central High School senior Avin Jones adjusts his bracelet while waiting inside the school cafeteria on Friday in Kirtland before the beginning of the school's graduation ceremony.

Kirtland Central High School celebrated 144 graduates at a ceremony this evening at the school.

Isaac Collard, Edward Horsely, Antoine Mason, Neheiah Ramone and Lydia Vandruff performed the national anthem, and Laquandra Yazzie gave the invocation.

Cort John introduced platform guests, and Tyrell Tapaha, Haile Gleason and Gladys Varela welcomed the crowd. Valedictorian Jaben Haws, salutatorian Danielle Emerson, student body president Franke Burns and class president Bioncee Yazzie addressed graduates and the crowd.

Kirtland Central High School seniors Aislinn Arthur, left, and Haleigh Begay talk to each other while waiting for their school graduation ceremony to start Friday in Kirtland.

Kirtland Central Principal Shawna Becenti certified the graduating class, and the Central Consolidated School District board presented graduates with their diplomas.

Elizabeth Clyde gave the benediction, and Jerica Holiday and Cortney Patterson led the ring and tassel ceremony.

Aztec High School held its graduation ceremony this evening at the school’s football field. See the Sunday edition of The Daily Times for full coverage of that ceremony.

Diego Avitia, left, Konrad Bennally, Nehemiah Dee and Marquis Begaye use the restroom mirror to take photos Friday before the start of the Aztec High School graduation ceremony at Koogler Middle School in Aztec.

The New Mexico Virtual Academy’s Four Corners graduates participated in a graduation ceremony this evening at the New Mexico Veterans’ Memorial in Albuquerque. No information about that ceremony was made available.

The last of the region’s 2018 graduation ceremonies are scheduled for Saturday. Navajo Preparatory School’s graduation is at 10 a.m. at the school’s football field. The Newcomb High School ceremony is at 10 a.m. at the school, and the Northwest High School ceremony is at 7 p.m. at Shiprock Associated Schools.

High school graduation rates for the class of 2017 throughout the state averaged 71.1 percent, according to New Mexico Public Education Department data. Data for this year’s graduating class should be available in the spring of 2019.

Aztec High School’s 2017 graduation rate was 69.5 percent, compared to the district average of 68 percent.

Bloomfield and CYB high schools’ 2017 graduation rates were 71.1 and 28.6 percent, respectively, compared to the district average of 65.5 percent.

Kirtland Central High School’s 2017 graduation rate was 73 percent, compared to Central Consolidated School District’s average of 63.1 percent.

The New Mexico Virtual Academy’s 2017 graduation rate was 39.6 percent, compared to the Farmington Municipal School District average of 66.2 percent.

Megan Petersen covers business and education for The Daily Times. Reach her at 505-564-4621 or