It’s an emotional time for Huston Academy Principal Carol Taylor with 20 of her students graduating and stepping into the next chapter of their lives at 6 p.m. Friday at the Cowboy Church of Erath County.

The Class of 2017 students are Adriana Amaya, Rilee Boone, James Bryan, Seth Curtoys, Kelli Davis, Cesar Delgado, Timothy Dorman, Luz Gonzalez, Chance Jenigen, Katie Keith, Christian King, Kameryn King, Joseph Macklin, Dalton Morton, Tabatha Nail, Johnathan Ojeda, Damion Patterson, Gabriella Stephens, Aron Weathermon and Austin Webb.

“We are like a family here and I know a lot of the kids have broken ground some being the first to graduate high school in their families and some being the first to go to college,” Taylor said with tears.

Huston Academy’s valedictorian is Tabatha Nail.

“I wasn’t expecting it because I finished early through the night school program,” Nail said. “I will be going to college for criminal justice, but I think I’ll just get my degree and then become a stay at home mom.”

Nail said she will miss the people and the atmosphere of the school.

Huston Academy’s salutatorian is Kameryn King.

“It feels amazing and I didn’t expect it to be honest. I plan to go to Weatherford College and become a pediatrician,” King said. “I’m mostly going to miss the smiling faces when you walk through the door. You feel like you’re home when you’re here.”

Gabriella Stephens will graduate and attend college to become a dental hygienist. 

“I will miss my coaches, playing basketball and Mrs. Taylor,” Stephens said.

Dalton Morton said he will spend the summer with his family before going into the Army.

“After that I want to become a writer,” Morton said. 

Morton added that he will miss Huston Academy saying, “This school has become my other family.”

James Bryan will attend Ranger College for welding and said he’s going to miss playing football.

“They’re going to do great things,” Taylor said. “It’s amazing to see all their accomplishments.”