AUBREY — Maintaining perfect attendance is something Aubrey High School graduating senior Bridgett Parker has worked on her entire school career.
“You just can’t have perfect attendance and then just ruin [it],” Parker said.
That persistence to keep her streak intact has finally paid off. At a Hollywood-themed rose-cutting ceremony where graduating seniors were celebrated, applauded and cheered as they walked down a red carpet, Parker was recognized recently for having perfect attendance from kindergarten through 12th grade.
“This award is given in recognition of her commitment and dedication to attaining an almost unattainable goal,” Dusty Wright, Aubrey High counselor, told a packed gymnasium at the May 23 ceremony at the high school. “The idea of a student making it to school every day from kindergarten all the way through 12th grade may seem like an absurd statement ... but this student, attending school every day of her entire school career is something she did, something she was dedicated to and something she was committed to attaining.”
The feat wasn’t something the 18-year-old senior said she came by easily. Parker said she was motivated by her parents, and sometimes had to motivate herself “to get up and go to school.”
“There were just a lot of days I just didn’t want to get out of bed, and then I looked back at all the days I hadn’t missed and I just had to push myself ... and get over the fact that I just didn’t want to come,” she said. “There were a lot of times when I came to school sick but I had to suffer through.”
It’s rare for a student to make it their entire school career with perfect attendance. The Denton Record-Chronicle sent inquiries to area schools districts and private schools and none reported having a graduating senior with perfect attendance from kindergarten to 12th grade.
The Argyle school district acknowledged it had one graduate who missed only one day of school — in the first grade.
“I mean it’s really an unbelievable feat,” Aubrey High acting Principal Susan Holloway said of Parker. “She deserves the accolades because it’s an incredible thing to do.”
Parker’s mother, Robyn, said her daughter made a lot of sacrifices to maintain perfect attendance, including attending school on “senior skip day.”
“I’m just very proud of her,” Robyn Parker said.
Tom Parker, Bridgett’s father, credits the school district and the “good Lord” with playing a role in his daughter’s perfect attendance. He said Bridgett’s younger brother, who is a freshman, looks to follow in her footsteps and currently has a perfect attendance record.
According to an Aubrey school district official, Bridgett Parker is the first student in the district since 2001 to maintain perfect attendance from kindergarten through 12th grade.
“It meant a lot for me to be acknowledged for my perfect attendance ... my senior year,” Bridgett Parker said.
In addition to that recognition, Parker — who pitched for the Aubrey High varsity softball team — was recognized at the May 23 ceremony for receiving a $500 scholarship from the Aubrey Athletic Booster Club.
Tonight, she’s expected to join her 140-member senior class as they receive their high school diplomas at Aubrey High’s graduation ceremony at the University of North Texas Coliseum.
Parker intends to study at Texas Woman’s University this fall and hopes to later transfer to Texas A&M University. She aspires to one day become a veterinarian.
BRITNEY TABOR can be reached at 940-566-6876 and via Twitter at @BritneyTabor.