I am going to start this off by saying “I AM NOT AN EDUCATOR but I am a parent”. In the city of Marion, Ohio there is a small and possibly little known public school called Rushmore Academy. For lack of a better term, some view Rushmore as a school of “last resort”. The students are usually kids with behavior problems and this school gives them the very last opportunity to graduate from high school with a diploma from the Marion City Schools. This past winter, 16 students graduated from Rushmore and this spring over 37 will graduate. These are 53 kids, who the world gave up on, that will have a diploma and not be a part of the drop-out statistics in Marion. Some of them still don’t behave the best at times but they have been given the opportunity to better themselves and THEY HAVE!! With that being said, during this past spring, some Rushmore students purchased gowns and tuxes to attend the Jr./Sr. Prom at Marion Harding High School. The kids were told they could attend and purchased tickets in advance for the event. Two days before the dance, Rushmore Academy was notified that their students would not be welcome at Harding’s prom because they were not students of Marion Harding High School (*There may be other factors in this decision that are unknown to the author). The kids that are in the Marion city limits and attend Tri-Rivers were allowed to attend, no problem there. AND, if any Rushmore kids are in high school athletics, guess who they play for…….Marion Harding High School. (P.S. one of Harding’s starting pitchers who played in the tournament goes to Rushmore). Needless to say, the Rushmore kids were devastated. Some of the kids did make it in the door at Harding but others were turned away. Now, I was never really big into proms when I was in school but for some kids this is something big and for the 37 that are graduating, this is a celebration!!! These kids don’t ask for much, they just want to take part in the prom. They come from all over the city and from various backgrounds but they are still students of the Marion City Schools. These kids are trying to better themselves with the help of the Rushmore faculty. Too bad some of the rest of the community doesn’t feel the same way. So, when you hear about kids that have checkered pasts going to a school of “last resort”, don’t look down on them. They may one day be a student here at Marion Tech!!