Class of 2020 Wish List


What do students hope that the administration is considering for the end of the year if we do not go back?

Jade Ammeen: “I would hope that administration is lenient with grades and finals, especially for the grades below us.”

Olivia Allegra: “I hope the administration will create some kind of special way that seniors can celebrate the hard work of themselves and their peers throughout their years at Bernards.”

Anika Britt: “But, if we do not go back to school, I think the administration should push back all events like graduation and prom!”

Kerry Broderick: “I hope that if we are not allowed to go back the administration allows the seniors to have a last “walk through” of the building followed by lunch in the cafeteria sometime over Thanksgiving or Christmas break (assuming we are then allowed to). It really stinks we never got a formal goodbye or a real send off and I think a lot of the seniors would really love the last meal with their classmates before everyone goes their own ways.”

Eddie Byers: “The COVID-19 pandemic has not only put an end to normal school day life, but it has also put an end to all spring sports. This has been a very anticlimactic end to our senior year and I hope the administration can try to keep some of the final senior events like the Last Blast. It saddens me that we may not get to walk across the BHS football field draped in our graduation gowns.”

Chris Cody: “I hope that we’re able to have some sort of event next year once the whole situation has calmed down. Maybe during Thanksgiving or Christmas break, we could have either graduation or a prom type event where the seniors would all be able to see each other again.”

Heily Cordero: “I hope that the administration comes together to hopefully postpone our graduation and come up with a way for us to have a little bit of the traditions we used to have.”

David Elkins: “I hope that the administration can strike a proper balance between a fun final event for our class before the fall while maintaining proper safety precautions. An in-person graduation with everyone in a car would be an unusual way of going about an event like this, but if they can figure out a suitable venue then we will be able to have a final assembly.”

Ryan Falduto: “I hope that they do consider making sure our prom and graduation happen. How they both happen is up to the administration but I hope they can figure something out for us seniors.”

Joey Fell: “If the administration decides to cancel school for the rest of the year, I hope we can definitely still have graduation but I also hope they consider at least having an event for us so we can have one more memory at the school.”

Arlo Filderman: “I believe the school should consider that we shouldn’t have finals during these trying times. Though this may be seen as me trying to get out of finals, it isn’t. I do not believe it would be fair for the students that tried very hard to finish off the school year great, and now can’t even finish off the school year in person.”

Connor Flynn: “I hope that the administration will set up a way for the seniors to have our prom since it was an event I was looking forward to for months and right after I asked someone quarantine started. the event I was looking forward to was ripped away from me.”

Ryan Frank: “I hope that the administration takes into account the fact that most of the student body would rather have graduation and prom later on in the summer (if we’re unable to go back to school and if it’s safe to do so by then) instead of virtually. These are our last few months here, so all of us wanna spend it with each other if we can. And if we do go back, I hope we have more events and things to do together before we all part ways.”

Eddy Gambelli: “As seniors, we have worked extremely hard in order to get to the finish line and I feel like it is only right that we are given the proper send-off. What that entails for me is having real graduation, a lap around the track, project graduation, and having a prom where we can all come together and have a good time. I know that the administration is working hard to make this happen. We all understand how difficult this time is and we are all holding out hope that all of these events will remain a possibility.”

Will Garvin: “I hope the administration will thoroughly plan our senior events when social distancing restrictions are uplifted so we can celebrate our senior year with our fellow classmates!”

Martha Gilbert: “I wish that people would be able to reuse the items that aren’t recyclable.”

Connor Goodman: “I hope we get our graduation not online or hope in some way I can see all the senior class one last time.”

Caroline Hunnewell: “If we don’t get the chance to go back, I really hope the administration will consider giving the seniors an alternative graduation. Whether that be pushing graduation back to a later date over the summer or an unconditional graduation-like event over our fall break (like a last walk-through of the school finishing with everyone on the turf field, also allowing for there to be speeches from students and staff). I also think if a video montage were to be put together and released to all students and parents encapsulating the past four years of us in high school, (with the help of the photos from Normandy Studios), that would also really be special for everyone. I think it’s really important to most, if not all, of us seniors that we get one last final goodbye or some way of leaving our mark on the school.”

Joe Kiel: “Although we have missed the experience of a traditional ending to our senior year, I still believe that some sort of in-person celebration should be considered when it is deemed safe. If we do not return to school, I hope the administration would consider organizing a reunion in some form. Maybe we could even reschedule our Project Graduation night. That being said, I trust that the administration will make the most of the opportunities we have!”

Justin Kim: “I’m hoping that the administration will consider the fact that we won’t be able to attend senior events like graduation, prom, etc, and that these events are important to us. We don’t ever get another high school graduation, another senior prom, etc. Also, they’re ways for us to make our final high school memories with the people we’ve spent the last 4 years with. So, I’m hoping that they’ll do something so that we can still experience these events to the fullest, whether it be by pushing the event to a later date or something like that.”

Ella Kleinstein: “I hope the administration will continue to work with the students to find a way to celebrate the end of the year in a way that everyone is as happy with as possible! A lot of students have some really great ideas and they should be heard!”

Charlotte Lewis: “As a senior during corona, I feel like we’re all inevitably going to lose some of the rite-of-passage ceremonies that every high schooler looks forward to after four years of hard work. That said, I would love the administration to begin planning a prom at a later date, so that I can feel confident that (assuming June 4th prom is canceled) we will still have a prom. That’s really sad for me since prom this year was going to be on my birthday, which I was really looking forward to, but any prom is better than no prom! That being said, I would so much rather have a social-distance-friendly parking lot graduation on June 17th than a postponed one. Might I also request that teachers don’t drown us in work? We have at least double the amount of homework, so much so that I struggle to finish it all on time. I would like the administration to crack down on teachers who are making assignments due on days when the class doesn’t meet, or before classes even begin in the mornings. I think it’s all too easy for teachers to just assign us more work, and they don’t really stop to think about the number of hours we’re stuck behind the computer when we should be spending more time completing scholarship applications, and going outside, cleaning, cooking (and maintaining our sanity). On that note, could I request that we start an optional Home Ec class/club for the remainder of the school year? Since we’re all stuck at home anyway,cooking, cleaning, sewing, gardening, and classes would be very nice! So, to summarize, I’d like the administration to start planning a summer prom, hold a non-postponed parking lot graduation, limit the amount of homework the teachers can assign us, and have a sort of Home Ec class or club if that’s even possible.”

Christina Lipper: “I believe that the memories of throwing our caps and going around the track one last time with our classmates will last forever so hopefully the administration considers that being together as the class of 2020 when we graduate is just as important to us as the graduation itself.”

Alexandre Lowdon: “I think that the Administration should consider allowing us to come back to the school for a day or two AFTER the quarantine is over. It would be nice to sit in a class with our favorite teachers one last time, and since we won’t get it by the summer, maybe a nice gift on September 5th would be to let us have half a school day to come in and properly say good-bye to all the teachers that we made fond memories with.”

Olivia Maddox: “I hope the administration will consider postponing the ceremony into the summer to see if a traditional experience will be possible and then doing a drive-thru version if conditions do not improve.”

Ritika Manathara: “I hope that the administration will organize virtual graduation so that we can at least enjoy some sort of graduation ceremony. We have all worked so hard for these past four years, and I hope that the administration is able to organize something as long as it is safe for everyone involved.”

Isabella Marks: “I hope the administration will consider how important graduation is the seniors. Since we are not going back for the last couple of months of our last year of high school the seniors have lost many experiences we will never get back. We are missing out on our last year of spring sports, and the last couple of months we were supposed to have with our teachers and friends. I believe we can still have graduation in a safe way and maybe everyone can stand 6 feet apart. We have lost so many memories we will never get back and I hope this graduation isn’t one of them. Thank you for trying to make this graduation memorable.”

Caroline McDowell: “I don’t really have anything specific because I know that the school is doing its very best to please everyone and to make everything work!!! Obviously, it would be great if we could just try to have everything be as normal as possible (normal as in regards to the new normal)!”

Jenna McHale: “I hope the administration considers the hard work each and every one of us put in to get to this point. We all are looking forward to graduation and to be honest, I wouldn’t want to have it virtually. It is not the same and I don’t think it is fair either. I also wish that once there is clearance of some sort, there is something for the seniors to go to and to see each other and the teachers for one last time. I think the same thing with gathering the seniors, they should let all of the spring sports teams come together one last time to cherish those special moments. I think it would make everyone’s day a little bit brighter than the day before.”

Amanda Membrado: “I hope that the administration will consider for the remainder of the year, first of all, to definitely not forget us. This was supposed to be the best year of high school yet, this unfortunate disaster has turned it otherwise. I am thankful that I was able to enjoy the first half. BHS has been an amazing experience and I’ll truly never forget it. I met my best friends here and I can’t imagine life without them. I’m hoping for the future to definitely have some form of graduation for us. One of the most important things to me is being with my class one last time and running the final lap. As well I am very open to any other ideas they may have regarding a celebration. I saw the survey they handed out and I thought there were some really good ideas in there. I’d also really like to be given a chance to see my teachers one last time. Finally, I would love the opportunity to have my yearbook signed by my classmates and teachers, but I am aware it’s pretty hard to do during this time. I think prom while it would be fun isn’t the biggest deal in the world, I can live with it. Graduation in person with my friends is really what I would like out of anything. Any other activities I will gladly and excitedly attend but if it comes down to one thing all I want from the administration is graduation.”

Andrew Michael: “I would hope that the administration will consider a way to celebrate the students’ achievements of persevering through hardship.”

Nayelis Milian: “I hope that they know that we appreciate everything they are doing for us during these hard times! That we all miss going to school, seeing our teachers, and friends.”

Jillian Miller: “Of course I will! I just hope the administration will listen to the students and parents who are trying to make this year as special as possible for the seniors! Although we will not be going back to school, we can still try our best to have events like prom and graduation (modified to follow social distancing guidelines of course). Hope this helps!”

Camila Muniz-Garreta: “Although we don’t get to spend our last months together at school, I hope the administration does its best to give seniors a real graduation. Even if it is months from now, we all deserve to walk onto the turf in our cap and gowns, receive our diplomas, be in the company of our best friends, and say our goodbyes the right way.”

Macaulay Myrtetus: “To be honest, I don’t think the administration can do anything to help us plan our senior events. The only thing that matters is the safety of the people who would be attending these events. Creating a risk for people is the last thing the administration needs. If they plan to push back the graduation to a later date, yes I would love that, but the only thing that matters is if it is safe enough to do so.”

Skylar Myrtetus: “I’d really hope the administration can take into consideration how every seniors year took a sharp turn in a matter of weeks. I feel that the least the administration can do to compensate for this awful occurrence would be to let us end our classes after AP exams. From my own and my friends’ experiences, I can guarantee that no senior is excited let alone willingly logging into Google classroom every morning to complete assignments that are simply busywork. Us seniors deserve this break from busywork, and I would hope the administration can realize that.”

Brooke Norris: “We’ve spent the past 4 years with the same people and built strong relationships with those people and the staff. Personally, the thing I was most excited about was running around the track after graduation and seeing everybody one last time. Over these 4 years, I’ve built relationships with the staff members including Mr. Young, Mrs. Malzone, Mr. Lallis, Mr. Kaplan, Mrs. Acoff, and many more. I had my hopes up that we would be able to spend at least one more day with all of our teachers and get a day to sign our yearbooks signed one last time.”

Susan Oberschmidt: “I really hope the administration will consider allowing the class of 2020 to be allowed on the turf to be able to throw our caps and do a lap around the track. Personally, I feel like that tradition is what everyone looks forward to as a graduate and it would be so nice to be able to have the moment we’ve waited for after 12 years of school.”

Youssof Osman: “I hope that the administration will keep graduation in mind and set up something where we can physically graduate virtually.”

Mira Patla: “Just yesterday, Governor Phil Murphy announced that all New Jersey schools would remain closed for the school year, and already, I’ve heard countless monologues from my peers expressing their wholehearted sadness at this news–but it’s understandable. After sharing a thirteen-year-long experience within a one controversial American Education System, having to end our hard work on such a dull note feels closer to punishment than celebration–especially considering the mental and emotional toll it’s taken on many of us. We understand it is absolutely necessary to close the school and prioritize humanity’s health, but I know I speak on behalf of my peers when I say that this is not the closure we wanted nor expected. We also understand the implications this virus has had on people in much less fortunate settings and support those who are consequently suffering, but once again, we can’t manufacture an ending that would be as satisfying as it may otherwise be. My real response to this question is as follows. I know that the administration feels for us. I see the compassion my teachers and other administrators have shown me and my peers since yesterday’s news. I understand the administration is considering everything they can. And more than anything, I appreciate all of that. In fact, the one request I have for the administration to consider through the end of this year does not relate to the events which typically celebrate our academic transitions. Rather, it is simply to continue to be understanding. There is power in empathy\; it has helped me through this and I know it does the same for others.”

Kevin Perla: “I would hope for the administration to consider giving a healthy solution for how seniors are to get their diplomas at the end of the year.”

Edith Po: “Though we won’t be returning to BHS, I hope that the administration still celebrates the many accomplishments of this senior class in a comparable manner to how it has so proudly celebrated all the graduating classes before us. When public gatherings are safer, I would love to have a physical graduation ceremony—an event that I, and many other seniors, have long imagined and awaited. Having worked so hard and grown so much in these past years, I am willing to wait a bit longer to have a grand finale to my high school career.”

Cole Porfido: “I wish to have a prom and also to go back to school.”

Jessie Prusina: “I hope that administration will consider giving seniors one last chance to all be together in hopes that this pandemic ends soon!”

Tyler Prusina: “I’m sorry for the late response. I hope our administration will put something together to recognize the class of 2020 and all of their achievements.”

Will Romano: “Given the high likelihood of a virtual graduation ceremony, I hope the administration uses a variety of resources to make said ceremony memorable and sentimental for students. In addition to featuring speakers, it might be a good option to play a video or audio compilation of moments from the Class of 2020’s high school experience. This would create more closure for graduating students and could be distributed so there will be a somewhat concrete memory of moving on from high school. As long as the administration does everything in their power to create substantial online content that reflects our class image, I feel as though the students and parents will be satisfied given this unprecedented quarantine situation.”

Mattie Sbaraglio: “I hope the administration will consider hosting graduation on the turf. I believe that all of the students (wearing masks) will be able to stand 6 feet apart from one another on the field. Then students would be called one by one to collect their diploma, if not from Dr. Nigel then from a table where they can all be safely grabbed. As for parents, I hope they would be able to attend (possibly spread out around the track) and if not maybe they could sit in their cars. The experience is mostly for the students. After everyone’s diploma is collected then students should be able to have a distanced celebration and then exit off the field in the “6 feet apart” line. I wish that the administration would consider this option for a proper (quarantine) graduation ceremony.”

Nick Scaperdas: “I guess I hope they consider delaying events that a lot of us were looking forward to like prom or graduation so we can all one last hurrah together. It’s pretty sad that the last time I probably saw a lot of people was just a random day in March.”

David Sprague: “For graduation, I think we should drive by and get our diplomas from the car.”

Aracely Velozo: “I would hope that the administration would consider at least giving the seniors actual graduation. I don’t think virtual graduation is the best option due to the fact that I don’t really think everyone is going to watch it and it doesn’t even come close to what the actual graduation is like.”

Grace Villani: “Since we are confirmed by the governor to not go back, I hope there is a virtual ceremony or maybe a postponed ceremony to make it feel special and give seniors that proper send-off or a proper closure. I am sure the administration will put in a lot of effort because I think we can all agree that everyone deserves to have their work celebrated and share a moment with your classmates one last time. There are a lot of options being considered, as much as a virtual ceremony is easier to plan for efficiency and have one the day we would be in our caps and gowns it does not feel right so I hope they consider a postponed ceremony. But who knows when that will be? This time right now is unprecedented and unpredictable so the administration has to play by year but I know they will want to work with the seniors and give us a well-deserved graduation to celebrate these last four years. I am not one to have a virtual prom but I definitely want that graduation. I hope that we get that but I understand if that does not happen due to these circumstances.”

Eliza Walters: “I hope that there will be a way to still collectively celebrate the end of our high school careers. I was mainly looking forward to graduating amongst the friends and classmates that I have grown up with, and I hope we can find a way to recreate that experience somehow.”

Yanyna Yanacon: “If we were not to go back to school, which has become a sad reality for us seniors, I would love for the administration to think of everyone in general. Online school is a challenge for everyone. I personally have found this quite difficult with internet problems and being a mother at the same time, I do not complain I have more time with my son. I would like it if the administration could adjust the grading system and give us seniors an event in which is the most important to us which is our graduation. Graduation is a moment of celebration and I look forward to having something later on in the future. Sending lots of hugs to my fellow classmates!”