By: Chinaza Ezeh and Kayla Hendershot
Online Editor and Editor-in-Chief
As we all know, COVID-19 has changed life and drastically affected our school year and the events us students at Hammond High were looking forward to. For seniors especially, events like Prom, the senior crab feast, graduation, Mr. HHS, and senior games for sports are all up in the air, leaving seniors disappointed and unsure of what is to come. As students are hopeful to go back to school, seniors are hopeful for their last year to be what they were looking forward to all four years of their high school experience.
Recently, senior representatives from each high school connected virtually to discuss the future of senior activities. Hammond’s 2020 class president, David Aodu, attended this meeting and said, “We discussed different ways to make seniors feel valued and honored still for all their hard work and about possibly having some of the missed senior events due to corona at a later time with modifications.” One big senior event that will be facing a big modification is the culmination of the high school career: graduation.
The Howard County Public School System recently released an announcement stating that all Howard County high school graduation ceremonies will be held virtually: “Plans are underway for virtual graduation ceremonies to allow all seniors to participate in this wonderful tradition…Each high school, as well as Cedar Lane School and the Homewood Center, will hold a virtual senior awards ceremony to highlight the many accomplishments of its Class of 2020 and announce the recipients of school and community awards and scholarships.”
This decision has received major backlash from the Class of 2020. Many are disappointed, and aren’t shy to post their feelings online. A consistent trend among the most let-down seems to be that students feel as if all of their hard work over the past four years deserves a more grand recognition than a meeting held across computer screens. An online petition was started and has been circulating on social media, although the trees of such an effort may prove to be unfruitful.
Now, although the traditional graduation ceremony is cancelled, there is still a chance that other big events may see the light, as their fate has yet to be announced. Aodu outlines what he believes will be necessary for such remaining events to take place: “In order for the remaining event’s to be rescheduled rather than postponed it would need to be safe and the stay-at-home mandate would have to be uplifted, also staff members/volunteers would have to be available to help and supervise with any event if it’s late in the summer.”
Speaking of staff members volunteering, the participants from the virtual meeting devised a plan to have staff members run yard signs to the homes of all seniors, and snap pictures of said seniors by these yard signs to post on their social media accounts. This was made possible by “the school PTSAs, Boosters, Senior Class, and other organizations.”