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Families emotional as they watch Louisa County seniors graduate in-person

Posted at 12:47 PM, May 19, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-19 12:47:12-04

LOUISA COUNTY, Va. -- It's a celebration parents in Louisa County never thought they would see -- having an in-person graduation ceremony for the class of 2021.

On Wednesday, Louisa County High School was among one of the first schools in the Commonwealth, to have an outdoor, in-person graduation since the pandemic began.

"I’m just overjoyed, it's just amazing," said one parent in attendance, Theo Fletcher.

Fletcher was one of 1,500 people who gathered at Louisa High School to watch her son graduate.

“I’m lucky because my son graduates, and my niece also graduates today, so it's a paramount day for my family," Fletcher said.

The ceremony was made possible after Governor Ralph Northam announced in March that schools will be able to hold outdoor graduations with a 5,000-person cap or 30% capacity.

Northam also lifted the statewide mask mandate, which goes along with the new CDC guidelines, that those who are fully vaccinated do not have to wear a mask in public.

"This is these kids' day. They have worked 13 years for this. I am just over the moon," Fletcher said. "These kids have been through so much and it's just an awesome, awesome opportunity.”

More than 300 seniors were able to walk across the stage Wednesday, a moment Fletcher hopes other seniors will be able to share together as well.

“Hats off to the governor, hats off to this amazing school system and these kids are so lucky and I hope that the rest of the state can continue with this," Fletcher said.

Other schools across the Commonwealth are expected to have their graduations in June.