‘She Never Dropped the Ball’: Homestead High School Student Becomes First In Her County to Leap From Ninth to Twelfth Grade

Through hard work and determination, a ninth-grade Homestead High School student accelerated herself to 12th grade and will be recognized at City Hall for her accomplishment.

A 15-year-old student in Homestead, Florida, is being recognized as the first person in Miami-Dade County to reach an academic achievement of accelerating from ninth to 12th grade. Janiya Baker not only made the leap within one year, but she also holds the highest GPA in her school, Homestead High School — while thriving in her extracurricular activities as a student-athlete.

Janiya Baker Celebrating Her Academic Achievements
Janiya Baker celebrating her academic achievements. (Photo: Twitter/@HomesteadSH)

“I noticed she was very accelerated, and I’m like, ‘OK, she don’t make B’s,’ so then I’m like, let’s put her in higher classes, and then she started accelerating, accelerating, and she went higher, and she never dropped the ball so I was, ‘OK, let’s go for it,’ ” Baker’s mother said in an interview with WSVN-TV.

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But it was a challenging task. In addition to keeping up with activities such as class presidency and varsity cheerleading, Janiya had to put in significant hard work to make this achievement possible.

“It was a lot of work I had to do,” Baker said.

The school congratulated Janiya on X.

“Congratulations to our very own Janiya Baker on being recognized for being the first student in MDCPS HISTORY to jump from 9th grade to 12th grade. Congratulations Janiya! You are going to do great things.”

“Moving from 9th grade to 12th, that shows grit, perseverance,” said Samuel Luis, school principal. “It shows a young lady with tenacity and the vision to accomplish her future goals sooner rather than later.”

Baker continues to aspire to great things after high school, seeking to go to Florida International University when she’s finally graduated. Baker advises those who also wish to push themselves academically: “Never give up and keep going even if it gets hard, and just have a great support system around you.”

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