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How one Forsyth County school is honoring its high school seniors despite social distancing
No other class has been as impacted by COVID-19 as seniors, and officials with Horizon Christian Academy have come up with a way to honor the seniors while still maintaining social distancing. - photo by For the Forsyth County News

Perhaps no other grade has been impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak as much as high school seniors, who have had to deal with postponements of milestones like proms and graduations and won't have a chance to be on campus with classmates again while students.

With that in mind, the staff at Horizon Christian Academy came up with a creative way to honor the school's 21 seniors by having yard signs made and even having members of the school's board of directors deliver the signs and a special letter to the students. 

"While there are so many ways to communicate through technology, nothing replaces talking in between classes at lockers, meeting at their favorite coffee shop and restaurant, hanging out in the Senior lounge, and celebrating the exciting news about college acceptances, soccer victories, baseball championships, and academic accomplishments,” said Alison Smith, the school's chief financial officer. 

“It’s heartbreaking for them and for their parents. Our school board and administration wanted to do something to surprise and cheer up our incredible senior class. We ordered yard signs for our seniors and wrote special letters to tell them how much we love them, how important they are, how their graduation would be unique, and how we are so proud of them.”

Smith said it didn't take long for word to spread online about what the school was doing and applauded how the students and the rest of the school's community were handling the challenges. 

“These are tough times for everyone," Smith said. "We are just grateful to be part of a school that continues to find creative ways to celebrate all these special moments in times like this. 

"HCA offers education for grades K-12. The board and administration are working behind the scenes to make sure our kindergarteners are honored as well as our fifth-graders that are moving into middle school. We have some awesome traditions for the students in April and May. Every milestone is important and we are trying to find unique ways to celebrate them, even if they are postponed into summer.”

Jenny Thomas, the school's secondary principal, applauded seniors for the way they have handled their situation.

"I am so proud of this senior class. They have modeled servant leadership for our school following Christ’s example,” she said. “They have worked hard and I look forward to what God has in store for them in the future. I am sad they are missing many of our traditions, but God can use this troubled time to continue to teach them valuable life lessons and to honor them in unique ways."