In the last six months, 18 year-old Leanna Elizalde has undergone two cancer surgeries followed by radiation therapy. As she struggled through cancer treatments, she attempted to keep up with her schoolwork -- and for the most part she succeeded. However, the end of the school year finds her a few credits short of qualifying for graduation. A few. As a result, she will not be graduating with her friends and fellow seniors. Rules are rules, after all.
Leanna's mother Lupe Ramirez said she asked the school to allow her daughter to graduate with her fellow students, even if she has to finish earning the credits over the summer. "I spoke with the vice principal. I spoke with the principal and even the school district and they're all like, nope, nope, nope, absolutely not."
The school has said it will not make an exception even if Leanna promises to earn the needed credits during the summer. Nope. Nope, nope, absolutely not. Rules are rules.
Her doctor has tried to intervene. Elizalde's doctor, UC Davis Professor of Clinical Surgery, Robert Canter has written to the school suggesting the refusal is a "punitive action unbefitting a pediatric cancer patient."
The report goes on to state the employer of Leanna's mother, Yolo County Recorder Freddie Oakley, has even suggested that perhaps the school "at least allow a statement to be read at graduation honoring her. Something along the line of "Tonight we also honor Leanna Alizalde, who's been fighting a courageous battle, a heroic battle against cancer." It might take a minute. Nope. Nope, nope, absolutely not. Rules are rules. Student Who Battled Cancer, Now Fights to Graduate with Her Class.