TOPEKA (KSNT) – Hope Street Academy held its 2023 commencement ceremony on Wednesday in the School Gymnasium.

“It’s exciting, and I’m very nervous, this was a goal of mine to complete and I’m doing it right now,” Graduating Senior and Class Speaker Maritza Pulgarin-Arrendondo said. “I was student of the month for January, I got it off good grades, coming to school, helping around in school, being an ambassador. My message today is, how a lot of us got here, thanking my teachers and parents and what we went through with COVID.”

Hope Street Academy, 1900 S.W. Hope St., is part of the Unified School District No. 501 and is an alternative school where:

  • Everyone is respected and respects each other.
  • Students will accept responsibility for personal choices.
  • Students can learn from their mistakes, which gives them opportunities for personal growth.
  • Students can be taught to problem solve both academically and personally with guidance.
  • Every student has the potential to be a success.
  • Students should capitalize on their strengths and improve their weaknesses.

“Our teachers here are ambassadors of hope. Instilling hope and inspiring our students every day is part of what they do, it’s their purpose. Not a job, not even a career, but it’s their purpose.” Superintendent of 501 Schools Dr. Tiffany Anderson said.

43 Hope Street seniors graduated from the academy in 2023.