From 'memory doors' to drive-by dedications, here's how parents and teachers celebrate HS seniors amid coronavirus pandemic

Megan Sims


Senior Maicee Espinoza, a member of Central High School's soccer team, celebrates her time in high school with a "memory door." (Photo courtesy of Darla Pool)
Senior Maicee Espinoza, a member of Central High School's soccer team, celebrates her time in high school with a "memory door." (Photo courtesy of Darla Pool)

High school seniors around the country are not going to allow the coronavirus pandemic to derail their class of 2020 spirit.

With countless high schools closed due to concerns about the virus, many families and students have had to find unique ways to still celebrate 2020 seniors, despite the fact that many in-person graduations, proms and other senior traditions have been cancelled. Pictures and videos of parades, social distancing/quarantine proms and more have gone viral as grads and their families try to make the best out of an uncertain situation.

Earlier this month, Avon High School in Avon, Ohio went viral after encouraging the families of graduating seniors to create “memory doors,” entailing front doors festooned with pictures, clothing, awards and more in an attempt to encapsulate some of the students’ fondest memories and achievements. In Fresno, Calif., parents of Central High School graduating seniors also created memory doors to honor their graduates just last week, with Darla Pool, who whose daughter Katelyn is a senior at Central, spearheading the sweet campaign.

“These parents...were very, very, very creative...I mean, it was amazing! There were so many amazing pictures,” she tells Yahoo Life.

Pool says she received over 100 photos from parents who wanted to do something special for their kids. The mother of two made a memory door for her daughter, who is a cheerleader, that included pom poms, Katelyn’s cheerleading uniform, her picture from senior night during football season and more.

Darla Pool put this door together to show her daughter, Katelyn, how proud she is of her. (Photo: Darla Pool)
Darla Pool put this door together to show her daughter, Katelyn, how proud she is of her. (Photo: Darla Pool)
Central senior Edwin Plascencia is a member of of the wrestling team (Photo courtesy of Darla Pool)
Central senior Edwin Plascencia is a member of of the wrestling team (Photo courtesy of Darla Pool)


Josh Lindahl is a member of Central's football team. (Photo courtesy of Darla Pool)
Josh Lindahl is a member of Central's football team. (Photo courtesy of Darla Pool)
Natalie was a member of Central's cheerleading team (Photo courtesy of Darla Pool)
Natalie was a member of Central's cheerleading team (Photo courtesy of Darla Pool)
Hailey Consolascio was a member of the Central cheerleading team (Photo courtesy of Darla Pool)
Hailey Consolascio was a member of the Central cheerleading team (Photo courtesy of Darla Pool)
Anazjae Simpson was a member of the Central football team (Photo courtesy of Darla Pool)
Anazjae Simpson was a member of the Central football team (Photo courtesy of Darla Pool)

She adds that with Central’s sudden closure, this small effort went a long way.

“The parents actually felt so good after they had done it...’cause the seniors loved it. My daughter appreciates it, she thought it was really cool,” Pool says. “[When school closed] they had no idea when they were going to see their friends, you know, a lot of these kids are going to college and they’ll never see them again.”

Since there is no word on when or if seniors are going to be able to have some sort of graduation, Pool says she has been trying to figure out ways to help Katelyn celebrate, which she hopes would include a quarantine graduation party and having her senior pictures done. And she advises other parents whose seniors may feel like they’re missing out.

“It’s so important to share your senior’s experience in high school with others. Let them know exactly how proud you are of them, their accomplishments,” Pool advises. “Just always staying upbeat...and the outcome will be to their advantage, whatever it may be, it’s gonna work out and make the best of it.”

On TikTok, users have been posting videos of a new senior drive-by trend that has seemed to pop up around the country. In one of the videos, students were able to drive through school to pick up their cap and gowns as well as say goodbye to their teachers, who cheered them on. In another video, a school lit up the football field for 20 minutes and 20 seconds so seniors could drive by to say goodbye to teachers, and coaches.

https://news.yahoo.com/coronavirus
https://news.yahoo.com/coronavirus

For the latest coronavirus news and updates, follow along at https://news.yahoo.com/coronavirus. According to experts, people over 60 and those who are immunocompromised continue to be the most at risk. If you have questions, please reference the CDC’s and WHO’s resource guides. 

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