S.A.U.S.D. end-of-the-year activities go virtual

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Santa Ana Unified School District students have virtual end of the year activities.

The campus shutdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic changed the end of the year activities for seniors in the Santa Ana Unified School District, S.A.U.S.D.  Fortunately for the graduating high school class, many traditions continued in a virtual setting.  For prom, the seniors got all dressed up and invited their dates or just a friend for a social-distanced, at-home prom experience.   Some families decorated their home for prom.  Others even had a D.J., punch, the slow dance, light, and prom photos.  Adjusting to a virtual prom may have been difficult, but graduation proved even harder.

Again, society at large was able to offer a solution.  At 8:00 PM on May 16, ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC, as well as California Music Channel, CNN, The CW, FOX Business Network, FOX News Channel, Freeform, MSNBC, and Univision, broadcast a graduation ceremony.  The production was funded by XQ Institute, The LeBron James Family Foundation, and The Entertainment Industry Foundation.

During the broadcast, notable speakers included former President Barack Obama, LeBron James, Charli and Dixie D’Amelio, Megan Rapinoe, Shaquille O’Neal, and many more.  They also had a special performance by Chika, H.E.R., Jonas Brothers featuring KAROL G, and the Platt brothers.  They also had the National Teacher of the Year, Rodney Robinson, and the National Valedictorian Priscilla Arceo, a Santa Ana Unified student.

Priscilla attended Heninger for elementary and junior high and Santa Ana High School.  Next year, she is heading to UC Santa Barbara, leaving S.A.U.S.D. with a GPA of 4.7.

“Guys I know it’s hard but, we know what struggle is, we know what it’s like, and what it is to get back up and this time focus on you,” said Priscilla.

Other than this, some of the parents took their children to the school which was decorated for the seniors. There were also signs that teachers send to the seniors to put in their front yard.  There were also teachers who went to all of their students’ houses. 

During the broadcast, Obama said, “Don’t be afraid. America has gone through tough times before. Slavery, civil war, famine disease, the great depression, and 9/11. And each time, we came out stronger. Usually, because a new generation, young people like you, learn from past mistakes, and figure out how to make things better.”