Superintendent David Cash told Pawhuska High School’s 2019 graduates they have the advantage of coming from a town that cares what they go on to do in the world.


“You are so fortunate to have grown up in this community,” Cash said. “You are always a Huskie and there are not a lot of places like that.”


The 2019 Pawhuska High class consisted of 30 graduates, down from 47 members of the 2018 class. The last time PHS had fewer than 40 graduates was 1927, when 38 students received their diplomas.


Cash told a crowd assembled Friday at Ormond Beach Memorial Stadium that members of the class of 2019 earned more than 60 college credit hours during the 2018-19 academic year and had been awarded some $420,000 of scholarship money to pursue further education. The superintendent said several members of the graduating class had earned a “blood cord” to wear at graduation, which recognized their community minded generosity in donating blood regularly since they were 16 years old.


The superintendent also cautioned the graduates that, with the turning of their tassels at the end of the commencement ceremony, the world would begin to view them as adults.


“Here’s the good news: behind you is a group of people that really care about you,” Cash said, referring to the crowd in the stadium.


Valedictorian Blake Allen encouraged her classmates to follow with all their hearts whatever life path they might choose, and she reminded them they would always carry with them their childhoods in the town of Pawhuska.


The PHS class of 2019 graduated on a blustery, sunny spring evening. The graduates were led down the stadium track by junior class escort Hunter Reed. After the superintendent’s remarks, the seniors sang the school song, “Loyalty.” The class motto for the class of 2019 was, “The things that make me different are the things that make me” - Winnie the Pooh.