Parading through hard times

Senior event to take place Friday, May 15


Courtesy of StuCo.

With COVID-19 sweeping across the nation, school districts everywhere have come face to face with challenges. A lingering worry for parents and students is how graduation and other senior events are going to work. A parade organized by the faculty will be held for the seniors from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday, May 15 at the school.

“[I wanted] to do something special for this class that has lost so much,” Stamey said. “After years of putting on senior events and seeing the happy faces, I’ve been devastated knowing most of it would be cancelled. Rosecutting is a favorite of mine, so Mr. Kajs and I both really wanted to make it still happen.”

The parade will be a replacement to the normal senior graduation events. Students can expect to receive a farewell gift from the school. Along with this, students will receive their Jostens orders.

“They will come to the front of school for an envelope and a free senior gift being a T-shirt with names on the back,” Stamey said. “Inside the envelope will be graduation information, any honor cords or stoles they will wear at graduation, any senior awards they will receive, any honors from other groups. Then around to the back for the Rosecutting photo in front of the backdrop. There, they will receive a rose and ribbon and our photographer will take their picture. From there, they will exit or go to Jostens area by pool parking to pick up or purchase anything from Jostens.”

With social distancing orders and everyone on lockdown, planning the parade while making it as safe as possible for the attendees and seniors required extensive planning. 

“It was challenging to plan this alone while at home,” Stamey said. “We weren’t even sure it would be approved, but I wanted to plan and propose it anyway. Once it was, I sent out the information. I drew diagrams and designs to show what we were doing and asked for faculty help the day of the event.”

Along with Stamey who helped put the parade together, teachers also volunteered to help arrange the event. One of them being English teacher Ashley Elms, who will be there to cheer on the students.

“I don’t think anything will completely make up for what was lost, but the silver lining is that we’re able to have a senior parade and graduation,” Elms said. “I’m glad we’re able to come together in these ways. I’m so excited to see my students and work friends in person, even if it’s from a distance and behind masks.”

Students are eager for the celebration after having their ceremonies like prom cancelled. However, there is still fear of the virus so seniors, like StuCo member Amanda Losano, are playing it safe when they attend the parade.

“I think the staff is doing their best and the gesture is sweet,” Lozano said. “Many students and parents would riot if we didn’t have some type of celebration so, in some way it was necessary. I know my family is excited for it and in a way I am too, so I have to thank whoever’s idea it was for letting us all focus on something fun for a change. But yes, a part of me will be paranoid and I’ll be keeping hand sanitizer on me at all times.”

To Stamey, the struggle of dealing with the virus has shown how strong the bond is between the school and its faculty. She looks forward to creating an interesting memory for seniors.

“I always say hardships make us stronger and we learn how to handle more than we think,” Stamey said. “It makes us flexible and creative in finding new ways. I’m beyond thrilled that our district has worked to make graduation happen. We can’t please everyone, but this is better than I could have ever imagined. It will be memorable. This is a historical event for these seniors. I want them to go enjoy every minute at the Speedway and remember it always.”