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Santa Maria area high schools hold graduation ceremonies for ‘resilient’ Class of 2021

Pioneer Valley graduation

SANTA MARIA, Calif. -- Pomp and Circumstance has been the number one song in the Santa Maria Valley the past two days.

All four schools within the Santa Maria Joint Union High School District are holding graduations ceremonies this week, including two on Thursday and two more today.

At Pioneer Valley, more than 550 graduates earned their diplomas inside Panther Stadium on a warm and windy Friday morning.

After a year affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, it was a momentous occasion for the student and their families, which were allowed inside the stadium for the in-person ceremony.

"It's been said over and over again, these guys are resilient," said principal Shanda Herrera. "They can adapt. They can adjust and they've learned so much this past year."

Later in the day, Santa Maria High School is also holding an in-person ceremony at Dave Boyd Field.

"I'm looking forward to the graduation celebration for the Class of 2021," said Santa Maria prinicpal Steve Campbell. "A Class that has overcome more obstacles to get to this point perhaps more than any other graduating class in history."

On Thursday, Righetti held a rare nighttime ceremony that was highlighted by fireworks exploding Warrior Stadium.

"We are so proud of our graduates and all they have achieved and conquered the past four years," said Righetti principal Karen Rotondi. "We wish them all the best as they go on to chase their dreams and move mountains."

Delta High School held its commencement Thursday afternoon, awarding nearly 400 diplomas to its graduating class.

"I'm very excited and proud of our students in reaching their goal and all they have achieved this year under these very strenuous times," said Delta principal Sal Reynoso. "Our students have demonstrated their resiliency and perseverance and I can't wait to see all the great things they will accomplish."

California / Community / Local News / Santa Maria - Lompoc - North County / Video / What's Right
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Dave Alley

Dave Alley is a reporter and anchor at NewsChannel 3-12. To learn more about Dave, click here.


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