Superintendent looks out into the crowd of graduates from the podium at graduation

Congratulations Class of 2023!

On June 7, 2023, over 1,000 students walked across the stage at Memorial Auditorium in downtown Sacramento to receive their diplomas and officially become high school graduates. After drum rolls and cap tosses, they commemorated this milestone with friends and family, celebrating years of hard work, unwavering support and plans for the future.

This was only Visions’ second in-person ceremony since COVID, and it was graced with some incredible performances, speeches and words of encouragement from fellow students – stay tuned for links to the recordings! Whether it be college, trade school or the armed forces, our graduates seemed ready to take their next steps, like heading off to UCLA, packing up for Cal Poly, furthering their education at Chico State, joining the Marines and more. Thank you to our incredible teachers and counselors who have helped these graduates reach their goals; regardless of their paths, we’re already proud.

Grads, we are so grateful that we were able to celebrate you in such a big way. We have walked this educational path with so many of you for numerous years, and watching you close this chapter of your lives is always something special. Congratulations to the Class of 2023! We cannot wait to see how your lives unfold.

Check out what some of our grads had to say about their time at Visions!

Asian female teen with hair pulled back takes selfie in a car
Smiling female teen with long hair takes selfie in her car
Black female graduate holds up her graduation medals wearing a pink dress before graduation

Francine Cruz – Independent Study Academy

“After graduation, I plan on hopefully getting into nursing school! I’d like to thank Visions, especially my wonderful teacher, Mrs. Bonds, for being there for the 2 years I’ve attended Visions. Mrs. Bonds, if you come across this, I thank you so much! You’ve motivated me and pushed me to do my best, especially on times where I would slack off. I thank you so much for helping me and for being so patient as well as believing I could do it!

For someone who lacked high school credits, to graduate early is crazyI would never have done it without the help of Visions. Because not only did Visions help “graduating” happen for me, they also helped me learn the importance of time management and having goals no matter what it is. A skill I will use for a lifetime! So thank you, Visions!

And to my family, I did it guys!!! WOHOOO! I’d like to thank each and every one of you for supporting me every step of the way. I love you dad, mom, and of course my siblings! I would never have made it if I didn’t have the BEST support system! This is just the beginning. And it’s only going to get better from here:)

Class of 2023, WE DID IT!!! Congratulations to each and every one of you! Good luck on your journey!”

Maria Solorio Leon – Independent Study Academy

“I enrolled at Visions because of its incredible schedule. I wanted to start getting ready for college during my senior year, and I tried to prioritize my well-being while working and making money.

I also chose Visions because I wasn’t feeling well at the time, both mentally and physically. As I was growing up, I never felt like I belonged any place, but Visions helped me feel content and at ease. I had a sense of belonging here. This school is an excellent example of how much it cherishes its students.

I want to thank my teacher, Ms. Quintanilla, for consistently looking out for me and ensuring that I completed my assignments on time. She pushed me to complete my tasks and never hesitated to assist me and answer any queries I had. I can sense how concerned she is for her students’ welfare, and she always inquired about our well-being. Thank you, Ms. Quintanilla, for being a part of my senior year.

My time at Visions was fantastic, and it certainly flew by. I want to encourage everyone who is considering attending Visions to do so; you won’t regret it.”

London Young – University Prep Academy

“I was drawn to Visions because of the Directed Projects and the ability to do dual enrollment. I learned to DJ and sew through my Directed Project, and even had the opportunity to DJ Visions’ Winter Ball and Prom with my mom! I also joined Black Student Union and became the first Vice President of the club. For the past year, I’ve been doing dual enrollment at my local community college and joined the California Scholarship Federation.

I would like to thank Julie Winalski, Danielle Singley, and Melinda Lewis for their amazing letters of recommendation. My counselor, Julie Winalski, was beneficial in my whole college application process. She helped me put all of my ideas for my college essays out efficiently. I also would like to thank Danielle Singley, my Advocacy teacher, for always answering any questions I had and helping me succeed in school by teaching me how to manage my assignments using my planner. I would like to thank my Spanish teacher, Melinda Lewis, who was always quick to respond. Her teaching style made me better equipped to get the State Seal of Biliteracy.

My favorite part about being a student at Visions was being able to schedule my assignments for the week and have the time to work on extracurriculars and hobbies. I had the flexibility to grow outside the classroom, while also being successful in all my classes. Joining Visions was one of the best decisions of my life!”

Female student with dark wavy hair standing in front of blank wall
White male graduate in blue cap and flower leis in front of balloons before graduation
Redheaded high school female in a white dress poses in an open field for graduation pictures

Elisa Passarelli – Independent Study Academy

“I enrolled at Visions because it very much allowed me to do schooling that fit me and my own schedule. I am a manager at McDonalds, and I’m getting custody of my two teen sisters while also starting my life with finding a home. All of this was able to happen while I attended Visions because it helped me get school done on my time. Mrs. Kyles, my teacher, was absolutely amazing, understood everything I said, and was there continuously helping any way she could. She most definitely deserves my thanks.

These last few years have been crazy, at the age of 18 doing things that most students or adults don’t do, taking on responsibilities that not many take, sacrificing my own life for my little ones, all while doing school and working. Anything is possible that you put your mind to. Focus on it and you will walk straight towards your goal. Just another achievement marked off my list!”

Edward Golodneac – Independent Study Academy​

“I’m planning to attend college after high school and pursue my career which is to become an electrical engineer! I would like to give a shout-out to my parents for leading me to the right path and always being there for me.

And I would also like to say a huge thank you to my teachers and especially Mrs. Wall for everything that you have done to make my high school experience great!”

Daniela Baker – Independent Study Academy​

“I plan on attending Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee to major in commercial music.

Thank you to my aunt, Cara Larson, and teacher, Mr. Avila, for being patient and always believing in me. And a very special thank you to my mom.”

See Daniela’s performance here along with videos of our other graduation performers.