It only seemed appropriate that a class which spent most of the school year in remote learning, and only a month in the classroom, would have a hybrid graduation in the time of coronavirus.

And that’s how it is this weekend for the 878 members of the Evanston Township High School Class of 2021 — a part in-person graduation and part virtual.

Tyron Inniss, Jamari Jenkins and Jeremiah Lasley show off their diplomas.

The in-person portion was divided into seven groups, each outdoors in cap and gown at Lazier Field every two hours today starting at 9 a.m.

Students were called up by name and handed their diploma cases. The actual documents will be distributed later.

Superintendent Eric Witherspoon addresses the graduates during the 11 a.m. ceremony at Lazier Field.

The virtual ceremony for the entire class is Sunday at 10 a.m.

Grads Abigail Macek and Joan Daye.

In remarks prepared for the outdoor events, District 202 Superintendent Eric Witherspoon began by saying “Class of 2021, you are an historic class.”

“Nobody wanted your senior year to be this way,” he said. “But we all have understood that this pandemic is a life and death matter.”

Kate Newman, Sophie Newman and Steve Newman.

The superintendent told the students that even though “this pandemic turned your world and ETHS upside down,” the seniors “made the most of a terrible situation,” by working hard under extremely challenging circumstances, and building the confidence needed to cope with whatever life may bring.

Marcus Campbell.

ETHS principal Marcus Campbell added, “you persevered and were resilient, flexible and adjustable. You did your best.”

While everyone was socially distanced and wearing masks during the outdoor ceremonies, at one of the sessions (and perhaps all), Witherspoon told the students as they came up to receive their diploma cases, “take your masks off so we can see that smile for the official photo.”

Masked graduates.

Witherspoon concluded his remarks with his characteristic phrase, “It’s a great day to be a Wildkit.” And considering what these seniors have been through, a sunny day with graduation partially outdoors was great indeed.

Because the Class of 2021 will always be the Class of 19 as well — COVID-19.

Jeff Hirsh joined the Evanston Now reporting team in 2020 after a 40-year award-winning career as a broadcast journalist in Cincinnati, Ohio.

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