VIDEO | Brad Paisley Surprise Performance & Highlights from Barrington High School Graduation

A surprise visit by country music star Brad Paisley made for an unforgettable Barrington High School graduation ceremony at Willow Creek Community Church. Paisley shared words of advice and performed for the class of 2017 after a video produced by BHS-TV students won Brad Paisley’s “Last Time for Everything” Contest. Named after Paisley’s song released this spring, the contest inspired students to share the “last times” that come with high school graduation. Here’s a look at that video, now featured on Brad Paisley’s Youtube Channel.

Our crew captured Paisley’s performance while filming this year’s graduation and also interviewed graduates about favorite BHS memories and their hopes for the future. Enjoy these video highlights produced by BHS 2016 graduate, Gus Goetze.

Every year Barrington High School Principal Steve McWilliams shares the facts & figures that make each graduating class unique.

Here’s a look at the Class of 2017, by the numbers…

754 graduates


  • 70 % has participated in recorded volunteer activities
  • 52 served more than 200 hours
  • 7 students served more than 400 hours
  • 1 student served more than 800 hours of community service.
  • 75 earned the President’s Volunteer Service Award by doing more than 100 hours of community service in a 12 month period.


  • 201 are Illinois State Scholars
  • 24 are National Merit Commended Students
  • 16 are National Merit Finalists
  • 11 students earned an ACT composite score of 36

Top ten post-secondary destinations in alphabetical order are: Harper College | Indiana University | Iowa State University | Loyola University | Miami University of Ohio | Purdue University | University of Alabama | University of Illinois Urbana | University of Iowa | University of Wisconsin Madison

Some of the highly selective schools BHS graduates will attend next fall include: Harvard | Dartmouth | Cornell | Stanford | University of Pennsylvania.


  • This year, 26 Barrington High School musicians were named to the prestigious ILMEA District 7 music ensembles – 2 students were selected for Band, 4 students for Jazz Band, 14 students for Choir, and 6 students for Orchestra.
  • 3 students were selected for All-State orchestra – 1 student for All-State Jazz Band, 1 student for the All-State Choir, and 2 students for the All-State Honors Choir.
  • 13 vocal students earned Division One ratings at the IHSA solo competition including two best-of-day awards.
  • For the first time, the BHS Chamber Orchestra was selected to perform at the ILMEA All State Convention in Peoria.
  • This year, Barrington High School was well represented at the Harper College Art Show with BHS student works recognized for its originality in artistic voice and design.
  • This year’s theater season consisted of 3 main stage productions and 3 studio productions.
  • Broadway in Chicago named a BHS student as a State Finalist for the prestigious 2017 Illinois High School Musical Awards for our February musical, Anything Goes.
  • A BHS student was selected for the honor of performing in the All State production of “Sweeney Todd” at the 2017 Illinois High School Theater Festival.
  • The class of 2017 used video to reach beyond the walls of Barrington High School and make a positive impact on the world they live in. Through the creation of fundraising videos, over the past 4 years BHS students helped to raise over 2 million dollars for a plethora of charities including Relay for Life, Gigi’s Playhouse, and PKS Kids.
  • BHS TV students were invited to the White House and brushed elbows with President Obama and Leonardo Dicaprio.
  • The class of 2017  filmed and/or live streamed over 200 school and athletic events.
  • Over the last 4 years, BHS-TV students have been recognized more than any other school in the country by the National Television Academy. The seniors here today earned 20 Crystal Pillars of Excellence. In addition, BHS TV has been honored as the Best High School News Program in the Midwest.


  • On the courts, fields and in the pool students have won 74% of their contests.
  • In a conference with 12 schools and 30 conference championships, they have won either the divisional or conference championship in 16 of them.
  • So far, under senior leadership, BHS has won 6 regional championships and 5 sectional championships.
  • 63 state qualifiers and 12 state medal winners, 17 all state athletes. 241 academic all-conference senior athletes.
  • Barrington High School is also the 2016-’17 winner of the Paddock Cup for Boy’s Athletics.  This is the 5th consecutive year that BHS has won this award.

Other Noteworthy Highlights:

  • Class of 2017 is the first cohort of the District’s Spanish Dual Language Program.
  • Community foundations, organizations, and private donors have awarded the class of 2017 $94,000 in local scholarships

Congratulations, Class of 2017! The words of praise are well deserved. Enjoy the summer and best wishes for your new beginnings!


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