This year’s graduation ceremonies were worthy of more celebration than ever before.
The Class of 2021 has been through an unbelievable two years of academics.
As the school year of 2019 began, everything was the same as usual, and then March of 2020 saw drastic changes. One minute, students were studying in school, attending clubs, practicing for plays or out on the fields, the next they were home learning remotely with no extracurricular activities.
Proms were canceled, graduation commencements were put on hold until July where seniors graduated with just a fraction of their class at a time, as ceremonies needed to be spread out over a few days.
The beginning of the 2020-21 school year varied depending on what school district a child attended. For some there was a hybrid schedule, others fully remote and for a few in-person instruction five days a week, if they chose to do so.
Then things began to change slowly but surely as the calendar flipped to 2021. Students were given the green light to return to their classrooms every day as the year progressed. Activities after studies resumed and the fields were filled once again with football, field hockey, baseball, lacrosse and so much more.
While masks were still worn and plastic dividers remained, students began to emerge from their cocoons like butterflies ready to take on the world. Proms were held and graduations were celebrated with the whole class.
Last year school administrators, faculty members, students and parents banded together to come up with resourceful ideas such as car parades and staggered ceremonies to commemorate the momentous occasion of completing high school. This year after weathering the storm, students witnessed that a light at the end of the tunnel can exist no matter how dark that tunnel may seem at times.
They have emerged strong and resilient which can be seen in the sports championship wins across the North Shore and the smiles on the graduates’ faces.
Education is a valuable resource but, in the last two years, teenagers have stepped away from their desks with more important lessons than any high school class can provide. Life has taught them that with some flexibility, resourcefulness, resilience and optimism they increase their odds of making it over any hurdle to achieve success.
Graduates, take the lessons you gained in your cocoon and take flight as a butterfly would. A whole new world awaits all of you, and we look forward to hearing all about the wonderful things you accomplish.