Janiya Baker, a 15-year-old student at Homestead High School, has jumped from 9th grade to 12th grade in just one year, the first to do so in Miami-Dade County.
This week, it was announced that Baker will be recognized at Homestead City Hall for the feat. “I was ready to finish school,” the 15-year-old told WSVN 7 News Miami, adding “It was a lot of work I had to do.”
Baker achieved this amazing feat while participating in extra-curricular activities as a student-athlete, varsity cheerleader and class president. WSVN reported that she also holds the highest GPA in her class. Her parents and school authorities are proud of her.
“I noticed she was very accelerated, and I’m like, ‘OK, she don’t make B’s.’ 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. “Me and her dad Travis, we raised her to be the intelligent young woman that she is, and we’re proud of her.”
“Moving from 9th grade to 12th, that shows grit, perseverance,” Baker’s principal said. “It shows a young lady with tenacity and the vision to accomplish her future goals, sooner rather than later.”
The Florida teen now plans to attend Florida International University, where her goal is to major in business while continuing as a cheerleader. Her advice to other students who would like to follow in her footsteps is, “Never give up and keep going even if it gets hard and just have a great support system around you.”