YERMO, Calif. — Parents, guardians and community members gathered in front of Silver Valley High School to recognize more than 65 graduating Trojan students during a modified ceremony in Yermo, Calif. on May 28.
Instead of a traditional ceremony with a large gathering, the graduates and families were escorted through the Silver Valley High School parking lot in order to practice social distancing. As each graduate received their diploma on stage, families and Silver Valley faculty cheered and celebrated while standing next to their balloon and banner-covered vehicles.
“We do the very best we can for these kids in the face of adversity,” said Mike Sullivan, Principal of Silver Valley High. “We do it because we get to – people are invested in these kids, we want to make it special.”
The Alternative Education Center also held a diploma pick-up event for its students in the morning at their school.
After the students picked up their diploma, they were able to view a virtual graduation ceremony from the comfort of their homes or on any mobile device. Fort Irwin’s Garrison Commander, Col. Jeanette Martin, delivered the commencement speech for both schools, as students also got the chance to hear remarks from their principals and the district superintendent.
Fort Irwin Graduation Parade
A day after Silver Valley High’s graduation, Fort Irwin community members stood along Fort Irwin’s Barstow Road to celebrate the achievements of the nearly 50 Fort Irwin’s high school graduates, which included independent study, home school and Silver Valley High School students. More than 30 vehicles decorated with streamers, window paint, balloons and more, traveled down Barstow Road, as community members shouted words of encouragement and congratulated the graduates with applause.
“I’m thankful that we got a chance to celebrate with all these people,” said Armano Paleso’o, 2020 Graduate of Silver Valley High School. “It’s amazing to see everyone support each other…it makes me feel like this is home.”