Palermo student salutatorian for online school graduation ceremony

Lindsey Childs, of Palermo, presenting salutatorian address with her favorite horse.

Maine Connections Academy (MCA), in Scarborough, the state’s first tuition-free, online charter school for grades 7-12, hosted its commencement ceremony online on June 8 to honor 77 students in its sixth class of graduating seniors. Lindsey Childs, of Palermo, was class Salutatorian.

Due to the restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic, the in-person ceremony took place online, with all students and their families, as well as Maine Connections Academy faculty and staff, invited to attend. Childs will be attending the University of Maine at Orono this fall. She will have a double major in political science and sociology, with a concentration in crime, law and justice.

Her remarks as Salutatorian were notable in that Childs delivered them while standing next to her favorite horse. She focused on the presence of change in our lives: “We’re all going to have to make significant changes, and some of us don’t even know what to do with our lives. But change can be a positive, we can’t avoid it. The secret is to adapt to change.”

As an online school, Maine Connections Academy students learn from wherever there is an Internet connection across all of Maine’s 16 counties. This online graduation was simply one more way of collaborating together. With families and friends, Maine Connections Academy students, “walked across the stage,” and showed each other meaningful images and words to capture their time together at the online school. Four Maine Connections Academy teachers acted as MCs throughout the online ceremony.

Maine Connections Academy is now in its sixth year. Students come from all across Maine and choose online school for many reasons, including wanting a safe environment, the ability to work faster or slower than their peers, flexibility in terms of scheduling, and more. Maine Connections Academy offers students an award-winning online curriculum and the opportunity to work closely with certified teachers using detailed daily lesson plans that can be personalized to meet individual student needs. Maine Connections Academy is currently enrolling up to 429 students for the 2020-21 school year on a first-come, first-served basis—it is recommended that families interested in virtual school submit an application as soon as possible to avoid being waitlisted.

For more information about MCA, please call (207) 805-3254, or visit


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