The adults in this community cannot conjure overnight trips, hangouts in MacArthur Campus common areas, and lacrosse, baseball, and track seasons missed, not to mention the final weeks with their teachers and friends and all the beloved graduation traditions that take place in the Nave and Great Hall. But we can show these graduates how much we love them, and we are trying to do just that. We started with pre-dawn delivery of yard signs to announce proud St. Patrick's graduates. We created a virtual Civil Rights Movement trip, launched with a night in a virtual Escape Room. Each edition of the weekly Remote Learning Plan is highlighting a Grade 8 advisory. Writing about these students—their qualities, interests, and accomplishments—makes our mission of recognizing the infinite value of every individual almost too easy. How are they already so committed and aware?
Most recently, St. Patrick's faculty and staff showed up in remarkable numbers last weekend to caravan to each Grade 8 home. The celebration lasted two days, visited 32 homes, and covered (according to some estimates) more than 160 miles. Some families joined us, and the line reached 30 cars both days. And not just any cars! We were bedecked with garlands, posters, streamers, and window graffitti. We sported wigs and pompoms. We beeped and we hollered. And, leading the pack? Our Wolfhound, of course, emerging, at each house, through the sunroof! We got separated, we got lost, but we never got deterred. At the end, the group text blew up with "amazing," "so fun," "I admit I cried," and "such joy!" And we so hope that our beloved graduates felt that love. We know many did. One parent wrote: "[We] could not have been more touched by the drive-by celebration on Sunday afternoon." And another: "While your road trip was circular, you took each 8th grader and their families back to St. Patrick's and a reminder that school is about more than (Zoom) classes, it's about community."
And we will continue to celebrate that community and these graduates in the last few weeks. We have a couple of surprises left and a final three days of performance, tributes, and, yes, "real" diplomas! Hooray for the Class of 2020, truly incomparable!