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SCCPSS holding in-person graduations this week

Savannah-Chatham County high school seniors will be walking across the stage starting Monday to...
Savannah-Chatham County high school seniors will be walking across the stage starting Monday to receive their diplomas.(WTOC)
Updated: May. 17, 2021 at 6:14 AM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Savannah-Chatham County high school seniors will be walking across the stage starting Monday to receive their diplomas. This will be the first in-person graduation ceremony to be held in a year because of the pandemic.

Many of the seniors WTOC spoke with said the hardest part of getting through the last school year was simply waking up. Their alarms are set for their first and only in-person event of their senior year -- graduation day.

“Oooh, butterflies,” said Demetrius White, 2021 Graduate.

“I am very excited but also very nervous, so it is hard for me to stand still right now,” said Nyasia White, 2021 Graduate.

The moment is almost here. Soon, the class of 2021 will walk across the stage, receive their diplomas, and put this past school year behind them.

“Our students have endured not just a global pandemic, but really a seismic shift in their learning environment. They have shown absolute resilience and grit and risen to the occasion,” said Stacie Loftin, Assistant Principal, School of Liberal Studies, Savannah High School.

A year of learning online, no in-person events, and a full academic workload.

“As a senior, senioritis really kicked in for a lot of us. I know I have been lazy and I had to get on my game a lot. I fell off but I kept going,” said Brooklyn Kearse, 2021 Salutatorian, Savannah High School.

Kearse will address her peers Monday as the class salutatorian at Savannah High’s graduation - the first time seeing anybody in person since March 2020.

“I’m nervous, I have to say a whole speech but I’m going to do it for my class and for my teachers and for myself as well,” Kearse said.

Now, the senior class is putting high school in the rear-view mirror and driving straight into their next adventure.

“After graduation, I got to hit the gym. I have to work out a lot because I am going to the Navy after this so I got to cut off a few pounds and then go right to the Navy,” said Demetrius White, 2021 Graduate.

No matter where the future leads them, the class of 2021 will always be looked back on as the most resilient.

“It was absolutely everything, to see them rise to the occasion, to follow through and to finish so very strong,” said Assistant Principal Loftin.

The first graduation is happening Monday, May 17 at Savannah State University’s Tiger Arena, and then other ceremonies for schools in the Savannah-Chatham County Public School System will run each day through Thursday. There will be temperature checks and social distance and mask requirements. There also will be limited attendance. Each student only received a certain number of tickets to keep the numbers small.

And following this week’s ceremonies, an extra special event is happening on Friday, May 21, where 2020 graduates can return to graduate in person.

For the full SCCPSS graduation ceremony schedule, click here.

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