Graduation goes virtual as students, staff adjust to new normal

(Lewis Elementary)

FORT IRWIN, Calif. — On Apr. 28, the Silver Valley Unified School District announced the high school will host a virtual commencement for the senior class of 2020. It will take place May 28 at 6p.m. The Alternative Education Center ceremony will be held at 4p.m.

“We understand nothing can replace an in-person graduation ceremony, and dependent upon local and national mandates being lifted, we will continue to look into the possibility bringing this class together in the future. In the meantime, we still want to celebrate and honor the resilient Class of 2020,” said Jesse Najera, Superintendent.Meanwhile students, families, teachers, administrators and staff have been making the most of this unique situation.

Teachers and staff at the schools have been featuring themselves in videos to share messages with their students, to encourage them and as a reminder of how much they miss them. They’ve also been creating photo collages and voice messages to the students.

Silver Valley High School and Fort Irwin Middle School opened up for two days for parents and students to come pick up any items they’d left in their lockers. The designated days were April 21 and 22.

Silver Valley High has shared four, freshman orientation videos that include an introduction to school athletics, clubs, class schedules, binder checks, testimonials from students and AVID information.

The high school also celebrated an at-home Spirit Week, that includes Super Hero Day, Meme Day and Jersey Day.

As students and teachers continue their digital, distance learning and their families cope with their new normal, district and school leaders say they know some may still be sad and disappointed and they share those sentiments on missing out on traditional memories.

Seniors will soon be contacted by Herff Jones and its partners with direction on how the information will be collected prior to the final celebration.