Seniors conclude high school with online classes

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The seniors of Mrs. Silvina Peiretti’s ninth period AP BC Calculus class take a digital photo to commemorate their last class of high school. Friday, May 8, Mrs. Peiretti held an additional AP review session, and her seniors surprised her with a personal video to thank her for her efforts as a teacher. “Class of 2020, I love you, and I will miss you like crazy. I’m still trying to wrap my head around what is going on, but I can tell you one thing: no matter what life throws at you, I know you will find a way to succeed,” Mrs. Peiretti said. (Photo/Joanne Haner)

For the class of 2020, their last day of class was not filled with cut-up uniforms and cheerful screams, but rather tearful goodbyes as they logged onto Google Meets for the final time. Seniors stuck to the original academic schedule and ended classes Thursday, May 7, five weeks after beginning the distance learning plan.

Many teachers chose to take their last 45 minutes with their students to make another memory together instead of learning more material. With the lack of final exams this year, students have completed their high school courses. Even AP teachers, whose students have exams starting next week, opted for more fun classes with their students. 

While the AP U.S. Government and Politics exam is Monday, AP Government teacher Dr. Jonathan Pedrone still decided to play a “random facts” Kahoot on Thursday. 

“The plan was to do some final review for the AP Exam, but the truth is we have covered all the information possible for the exam, and I wanted to do something with the seniors that would be fun and enjoyable on the last day,” Dr. Pedrone said. “The last day of school should be a celebration of all you have accomplished, and I know my students are extremely well-prepared for their AP Exam. I hope the Seniors know I feel extremely blessed and honored to be a small part of their senior year. Every year at Heritage is special for me because of the students, and this year was no different. I hope despite us being apart that you celebrate this awesome accomplishment, and know that I am extremely proud of the senior class.”

Some teachers played games or music, but others simply talked and reflected on the past few years. English teacher and senior advisor Mr. Juan Laureano went this route, allowing his seniors to express their feelings about their future hopes and dreams. 

“Virtual goodbyes are just not the same. I am confident that we will be able to make it up to them in some way when we can gather safely,” Mr. Laureano said. “Class of 2020, you chose your senior class motto ‘20/20 Vision’ because of your determination and mindset. You will overcome this challenge and be better for it.”

Although the current circumstances may not allow students or administration to make concrete plans to reschedule events and gatherings, Heritage can still be hopeful that this isn’t the final goodbye.

Joanne is a senior at American Heritage School in Plantation, Fla. As a third-year staffer and second-year editor-in-chief, she loves immersing herself in the journalistic field and writing for her publications. Outside of newspaper, Joanne is also co-president of the English Honor Society and Mu Alpha Theta math honor society, where she also serves as the student delegate state secretary. Among the other clubs she is a part of, Joanne is also secretary of the linguistics team and Chinese Honor Society, as well as treasurer for Quill and Scroll. In her free time, Joanne loves practicing her photography and going to concerts.

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