It's graduation day for many area seniors.   It's a day full of pomp and circumstance and plenty of nerves.

Lauren Jones, a Northside High School graduate, told News 7 "I never thought I would get to this point and I did.  I just can't believe it."

Trevor Lawson, a Patrick Henry High School graduate, told News 7 "really glad, kinda scary."

Roanoke County handed out 1,168 diplomas today.  Four of the county's high schools held their graduation ceremonies at the Salem Civic Center.  Glenvar had theirs at the school's football stadium.

Believe it or not, some graduates from Northside High School wanted to skip graduation.  The school's baseball and softball teams were scheduled to play in the state semi finals after graduation.

Michele Epilon, a Northside graduate, told News 7 "to be honest I forgot I was graduating this morning.  My parents are both at home I was like I'm not playing until four, what are you doing here?"

Many of the players wore their uniforms to graduation under the gowns.  Tyler Goodman, a Northside graduate, told News 7 "I've been playing baseball since I was five years old and this is what I've been dreaming of since I was five years old."

Roanoke City held commencement at the Roanoke Civic Center.   890 students picked up their diplomas from William Fleming High School and Patrick Henry High School.

Graduates Savannah Vaught Edwards and Rebecca Hairfield were honored for perfect attendance.  They haven't missed a single day of school since elementary school.

Many of the graduates took time to thank their teachers for helping to motivate them.  Jamalia Lee, a Patrick Henry graduate, told News 7 "oh a lot motivated me, thank you everybody that motivated me."

The graduates also say their parents got them through the hardtimes.  Trevor Lawson, a Patrick Henry graduate, told News 7 "they're extremely proud right now.  They pushed me to this moment a whole lot.  I know I messed up a little bit but they got me where I need to be."

Administrators in Roanoke City schools are pleased with the progress of the city's graduation rate.  Last year, William Fleming's graduation rate was 69%.  The principal says preliminary results indicate Fleming's graduation rate will be between 75% & 80%.  Final numbers won't be until later this summer. 

School Board member Todd Putney says it looks promising.  Putney told News 7 "I think it's a break through.  I think we're not done.  I think we have to keep pushing forward and getting those numbers as high as we can."




William Fleming High School held their graduation at the Roanoke Civic Center Friday morning.  The principal announced Friday Fleming's graduates have received more than $3 million in scholarships.

Friday's speaker was Jennifer Braaten, the president of Ferrum College.  Patrick Henry High School will hold its graduation at two o'clock this afternoon.

Roanoke City:

Patrick Henry High School -- 2 p.m.