Lakewood Ranch High parents organize parade for seniors as they pick up caps and gowns.
When Samantha van der Sommen, a senior at Lakewood Ranch High School, drove down Mustang Alley on May 21, she saw a sea of green and white balloons, homemade signs and dozens of parents lining the streets cheering.
“I wasn’t expecting the parade,” van der Sommen said. “It was a lot of fun.”
As van der Sommen continued driving, she stopped by a group of teachers passing out lawn signs congratulating seniors, another group giving out sunglasses and finally a group of teachers and staff members passing out caps and gowns.
With seniors ending their final year of high school at home with e-learning, missing such special moments as prom and having to wait until July 29 for their graduation ceremony, parents wanted to do something special to celebrate the achievement.
“It’s emotional and exciting,” said Angie Jackson, the mother of senior Alina Jackson. “I’m glad we get to do something for them. It’s nice people took time to come out and celebrate everyone’s kids.”