Graduation Denied - NBC Bay Area

Graduation Denied



    Graduation Denied
    Milpitas teen is being denied the chance to graduate from high school.

    This should have been one of the most important weekends in Shontale Taylor's life.  The Milpitas High School senior had looked forward to it for years. 

    June 13 was graduation day and Taylor is the first in her family to get a diploma.

    But there was no cap and gown moment for her.  The school barred her from ´╗┐graduation because of the role she played in breaking up a fight on campus.

    Taylor was suspended last month after a teacher witnessed her pulling the hair of another student.  She did it as she was attempting to break up a fight between that girl and another student.  Witnesses, including the alleged victim, have disputed the claim.

    The suspension violated the school's honor code, which made Taylor ineligible to graduate. 

    The San Jose Mercury News posted her story on Wednesday night and ever since a long line of people have stood in Taylor's corner in an attempt to get the school board to change its mind.   Many spoke on her behalf Friday night.

    No go. The board refused to let her participate in the event. They said she is eligible for the summer graduation in August.

    Taylor is not your average student.  She has truly beaten the odds.

    Taylor has been in foster care nearly all her life.  Statistics show 90 percent of foster care student don't graduate, so getting here is an accomplishment.

    Taylor said she accepts the school board's decision. Instead of sitting with the graduating class, she sat in the stands in support of her friends.