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Congratulations to this year’s graduates

What a year for our students! Schools have been closed for months. Parents are home schooling. Students are sitting in front of computers to get lessons from teachers. No traditional graduation ceremonies. No sitting in an auditorium and hearing your child’s name announced as they walk across the stage for their diploma.

I have talked to many parents who have been honoring their graduates in creative ways. I say, good for you! Your efforts mean a lot to your kids.

I homeschooled my daughter, Chloe, for her eighth grade year because of a problem with her school. This took place many years ago when there were not many resources for homeschoolers. Chloe and I covered all the subjects needed for eighth grade, including the study of the U.S. Constitution. She worked hard and did very well.Ê

I felt that she needed an official eighth grade graduation ceremony.

I was able to get a cap and gown from a friend. My hubby and our other kids sat in our living room as Chloe marched in to an excruciating version of Pomp and Circumstance that I attempted to play on a small electric piano. My rendition gave the song a kind of scary, haunted-house sound.

We got a late start; and so by the time the ceremony started, all of us were wearing pajamas. This might have taken away from the solemnity of the ceremony just a bit. However, when Chloe, who was valedictorian and salutatorian, made a speech, we all were really quite moved. I was so proud as I handed her a homemade diploma.

No matter where or how the 2020 graduation celebrations take place, the important thing is that they do take place. Honor your students. They deserve it.

Most West Lawn schools have come up with their own creative ways to honor their graduates.

St. Mary Star of the Sea School honors a different graduate every day on their Facebook page. There are individual photos and inspiring messages to each graduate.

St. Nicholas of Tolentine School is also honoring their graduates on their Facebook page with graduates’ photos and information about where each student will be attending high school.

Queen of the Universe School, 7130 S. Hamlin, has a wonderful photo montage of their Class of 2020 graduates on their Facebook page.

Hurley School has several online photos of teacher Persida Contreras posing with her homemade posters of encouragement.

Lee School will be having an online graduation ceremony at 9 a.m. June 11. If you need more information about this, call (773) 535-2255.

Azuela School shared information on their Facebook page with their students and families about how to lower stress during these challenging times.

Richardson Middle School has no plans to honor their graduates at this time, but I was told by a person in their office that they may plan something later in the summer. If I hear of anything, I’ll share in a future column.

I have not been able to get in touch with anyone at Hubbard High school, but I did see that they hung a nicely made sign on their fence with a positive message for their all students.

Daley College will be having a celebration online on June 27 at 9 a.m. Call for more information at (773) 838-7500. Congratulations to valedictorian Elizabeth Kaminski and salutatorian Michael Beauford!

Congratulations to the class of 2020! Best wishes to all of our West Lawn graduates. Thank you to their families for finding ways to celebrate their child’s success.

“The toughest thing about success is that you’ve got to keep on being a success.” – Irving Berlin.

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