High school seniors across the nation are facing the harsh reality of the effects of COVID-19. Most senior activities like prom, graduation and end-of-year ceremonies have been postponed or, sadly, cancelled.
On April 7, Palm Beach County’s Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Donald E. Fennoy II, stated in an email to parents that graduation ceremonies at the South Florida Fairgrounds were cancelled.
The words “your diploma will be mailed to your home” did not sit comfortably with graduates. Parents, heart-felt alumni and Jupiter families wanted to do something to honor the class of 2020, in light of so many things they will not get to experience.
In a show of support, a Jupiter parent, Jennifer Rizzi, reached out to a promotional company owned by Lee Pagan to print hundreds of yard signs that read, “Jupiter High School Class of 2020: Strong, Determined, Resilient.” Parents picked up signs within hours of printing and passed them along to fellow Jupiter Warriors who proudly displayed them in their yards for the graduates.
Lindsey Fine, JHS senior and editor-in-chief of War Cry, picked up multiple signs to safely distribute to students she knew.
“I drove around and gave the signs out to my friends because I think they are a nice way to show how the senior class is staying strong,” Fine said. “We got so much taken from us, and it was a nice way to see my friends for a bit, even six feet apart.”
All over Jupiter, residents can see the supportive signs propped up on front yards, hanging in windows or featured on social media.
“It gave me a sense of normalcy, a purpose beyond filling out worksheets for an afternoon,” Fine said.
Jupiter is not the only city to use yard signs to recognize its graduates. In Jacksonville, Fla. senior parents also created signs for the class of 2020. Mike Luther, who owns Studio City, was featured in an ABC First Coast news article for his recognition of the graduating class of 2020. Luther’s business creates souvenirs and novelty items for high school seniors. In April, he created signs for the graduates from a local high school, and sales skyrocketed.
With major milestones being canceled, seniors are welcoming the kind gesture of the yard signs. JHS seniors Delaney and Madison Cook, twin sisters, were excited to display their sign in the entryway to their home.
“When we got the sign, I felt like we were appreciated because our class was affected by the virus which made our senior year cut short,” Madison said.
Strong, determined and resilient are the perfect adjectives to describe the class of 2020.