BLYTHEVILLE, AR (KAIT) - It's graduation season across the country, but for one area high school, this graduation ceremony is even more special.
It's a milestone for the 36 graduating seniors and for one local high school.
KIPP Blytheville Collegiate High graduated their first class of seniors ever.
KIPP opened their doors in 2010 with just fifth graders.
And KIPP College Adviser Sarah Dewey said that logic goes back as far as KIPP in 1994.
"It's a good age that if you can get to the kid at 10 or 11 years old, you can change their trajectory," Dewey said.
The school has been slowly growing throughout the years, adding new grades.
And Friday night, that first group of fifth graders graduated high school.
"I think KIPP is a wonderful opportunity for this community," senior Anika Mittal said. "As we are starting to make a path for future classes I think it's really exciting that we were the first."
Thirty-six seniors earned $7.8 million in scholarships and will be attending colleges in eight different states.
It's an inaugural senior class that KIPP knows has set the bar high.
"Just to get students who understood why they should trust the college advising process was huge," Dewey said. "Now to be able to point from 2019 and say hey these students trusted the process and ended up with these kinds of results, I have students who ended up with four free college options and now I have those proof points for students next year and that's powerful."
KIPP will add another grade this new school year and hopes to keep making a difference in the lives of local kids.