Palmer High May

Principal's Post

Looking Into the Silver Lining

This May completes a year that may go down as the most memorable year of our collective lives. Unfortunately, it won't be because of good reasons. Stating the obvious, this is due to the global pandemic, an election year of all election years, political unrest, racial tensions, a plethora of conspiracy theories, and a general feel of discontent is what I will highlight for this historic year. In a nutshell, this translates to an overabundance of negativity.


I want to share a story that transpired very early in my coaching career. The year was 1999. I was coaching Palmer High C-team football, and we did not have a successful season. We lost every game leading up to the season's final game against our Valley rivals, the Colony Knights.


I was sharing coaching duties with a former hardnosed Vietnam Veteran, Coach Holsten. He was old school and tough as nails. We won that final game of the season, and the moment the final horn sounded, there was a mob of teenage boys in a mosh pit celebrating the victory. They were genuinely celebrating with pure unadulterated youthful joy and happiness. Right there in the nucleus of the mob was hardnosed Coach Holsten. After the celebration was over, and we shook hands with our rivals- Coach Holsten looked at me with a hint of tears in his eyes and said, "that was better than a fountain of youth!"


The moral of the story is our students, kids in general, find the silver lining through perseverance. We often think that kids are sent to school to learn from adults. I believe that adults have just as much to learn from the kids. In a healthy school setting, it should be a symbiotic relationship where we are interdependent and mutually benefit from our relations.

We learn and grow from our experiences with each other, and this year we may very well glean more from the students than they got from us.


Our students have been incredibly resilient and flexible with all that has been asked of them during this historic year. I am optimistic that this generation will thrive from the adversity endured this year. I keep this hope of optimism because I have the pleasure of watching our students appreciate the small things. The students are embracing the simple moments and events that were lost this time last year. The victories are sweeter, and the journey is more meaningful.


This is the silver lining that we can learn from our students this year. Like Coach Holsten, I'm grateful for the opportunity to tap into this fountain of youth- there is something in their approach and attitudes that all of us adults can learn and grow from.


Principal Reid

Palmer High Graduation Information

I am happy to report that our graduation plans are taking shape and the plan is becoming a reality. On May 18th at 7:00 pm we will celebrate the class of 2021 at beautiful Machetanz Stadium. To my knowledge it will be Palmer High's first outdoor ceremony, and it will happen rain or shine. We're Alaskans, we can handle what the elements throw at us.


Hosting the ceremony outdoors will allow for near the same number audience participants as our packed gym allows, but with the ability to spread out more. Each graduate will receive 10 tickets for family and friends. If there is a need for more tickets, we will do our best to accommodate families.


Tickets- Will be distributed to the graduates the morning of graduation practice on May 18th.



  • May 11th (seniors last day) Let us know your how many tickets your family would like. If you need less than 10 or if you need more than 10 let us know so we can accommodate families. @ 746-8427
  • May 11th we will host a BBQ picnic for seniors at 12:00 and that will be followed with the senior send-off and slideshow in the gym.



May 18th- all seniors will be required to have a check-out list to participate in the rehearsal. This will include having all text books returned, Chromebooks, and any other school material or library materials. Any outstanding debt will need to be collected at this point.


Parking- parking is always an issue for Palmer High graduations. With the stadium as a venue parking in the back of the school will be reserved for handicap parking only. This will require a handicap sign or license plate.


Handicap- reserved seating- Please call Mrs. Grover to reserve seating @ 746-8427


Arrive early for better parking options in the main lot. We will have signage to direct foot traffic to the field.


Masks will be required for all in attendance. If a family group is sitting together and the group is distanced three feet or more from other groups they may remove their mask. Thank you in advanced for working with us on this district mitigation expectation.


Picture opportunity- there will be a designated family photo area for graduates after they exit the stage.


We are so happy to be able to celebrate the class of 2021 in person with a commencement ceremony. We always take a great deal of pride in celebrating our seniors achievement.


If you have questions or concerns regarding the graduation ceremony, feel free to call the school at 746-8400.

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2021 IB CAS Project - By Senior Ruby Wright

A CAS project is one component of the IB diploma candidates. CAS stands for creativity, activity, and service. The CAS project for our IB students has an aim of individual growth and giving back to the community. This cow display is a project that Mr. Beus, our agriculture teacher, asked art students to revamp with a fresh paint job. The goal is to display the cow for our FFA float during our City of Palmer parades of Colony Days. The artist intent was to communicate the beauty of agriculture in the Valley. The vegetables on the cow are the most popular products that are best known as Alaska Grown.

Teacher PD on May 7th-

On Friday May 7th teachers will be engaged in professional development. We typically allow student in the building on Friday's, but this Friday will be a day off for students. Students should not come to the school (unless for sports practice in the afternoon) next Friday.


Thanks for your cooperation.