As El Monte Union prepares to bid farewell to the Class of 2020, the District’s six high schools are finding creative and safe ways to highlight seniors, honoring students with awards, personalized yard signs, graduation regalia and diploma car parades to honor the successes they’ve achieved over the last four years.

South El Monte High School will host a virtual Golden Eagle Award Show – which will be live-streamed on YouTube – at 6 p.m. Thursday, May 28. The program will honor the school’s high-achieving students, including its six valedictorians, who are heading to such universities as Stanford, UCLA and UC Berkeley.

Then on Thursday, June 4, El Monte Union schools will host Class of 2020 Car Parade Celebrations, during which seniors will officially receive their diplomas and have their photos taken – all while adhering to the county’s social distancing guidelines and facial covering requirements. Families will be able to cheer on their grads, clad in caps and gowns, from their vehicles.

These events are the latest in a series of inventive solutions to honoring the District’s 1,800 graduating seniors.

“The Class of 2020 is remarkable and has impressed us all with their resilience as they have worked to navigate unexpected obstacles,” Superintendent Dr. Edward Zuniga said. “I want to thank our school administrators, teachers and staff for doing everything feasible to make our seniors’ end-of-year experience special and showering them with the recognition they deserve in a safe manner.”

Wearing gloves and masks, Arroyo High School staff delivered personalized yard signs to the school’s outstanding class of 439 seniors in mid-May. Arroyo boasts five valedictorians this year who are headed to universities, including UC San Diego, UCLA and UC Irvine.

El Monte High School staff delivered personalized signs and words of encouragement to 406 students in mid-May. The high-achieving senior class – which includes 15 valedictorians heading to MIT, UC Irvine, Williams College and more – also received their caps and gowns, medals and other materials on May 26.

Fernando R. Ledesma High School provided its 50 graduating seniors with yard signs in mid-May, encouraging students and their families to display their pride for everyone to see.

Mountain View High School administrators, teachers and staff rallied around the school’s 275 seniors, displaying their Viking pride as they delivered custom lawn signs to seniors in mid-May. Mountain View High’s Class of 2020 includes three valedictorians heading to UCLA and UC Irvine.

Rosemead High School, which held a Virtual Decision Day in May, hosted a modified Senior Pick-up Day on May 18. Seniors advanced safely through the campus parking lot to receive graduation regalia and yard signs that celebrate their accomplishments. Rosemead’s graduating class of 401 seniors is led by 18 valedictorians, who are heading to UC Irvine, UCLA and other four-year universities.

South El Monte High School, which recognized students’ college decisions virtually, also cheered on seniors during a cap and gown tailgate on May 20. Teachers and staff parked their decorated cars along campus, guiding the way for its 300 seniors as they carefully collected their caps and gowns, awards, medals and other graduation regalia from their vehicles.

El Monte Union’s commencement ceremonies have been postponed until November, or as soon as they can safely be held. Following the June 4 car parades, all schools will hold a virtual presentation at 7:30 p.m. for each senior class, which will be live-streamed. More information will be provided to families.