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Lonoke drive-thru for senior class provides unique experience while honoring school's legacy

"We're so proud of these graduates, you've done an excellent job. We will always remember you, we just ask you to remember us," Superintendent Tackett said.

LONOKE, Ark. — As May quickly approaches, school districts around the state are figuring out how to best honor the class of 2020. 

All ceremony plans must be approved first by the state department of education. 

The Lonoke School District recently got its unique plan approved, which honors the school's legacy. 

Superintendent John Tackett gave his board three different options: postpone graduation, hold it virtually or have a drive-thru. 

He said they decided on the third option to give the class of 2020 a one-of-a-kind experience they'll never forget. 

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"It's not traditional, but we feel like this is so unique. This class will capture something that's never been done before," Tackett said. 

Capturing moments you can't repeat, like one with senior Matthew Sumner, and his mom, Angela Sumner. 

Angela said as a member of the school board, you want to include all the students in the decision-making process, but as a mom, it's different. 

"As a parent, you never expected graduation to end up like this," she said. 

On Tuesday morning, Matthew and Angela looked down at one of the many bricks that make up the alumni walk on Lonoke High School's campus. 

This specific brick with Angela's named carved in it from 1989.

"I think it's awesome that we're going to be able to walk through it and end our school year like a lot of parents did," Matthew said. 

The historical arches, built from the original high school's building, will now be where Matthew and his classmates receive their diplomas. 

For alumni like Angela, it makes emotions even higher. 

"It's really special to me that he gets to graduate and walk through the same arches that I did," she said. 

The Sumner's taking the same path out, but not necessarily the same one in. 

According to Tackett, the Lonoke High School's drive-thru graduation plan is a "rich option" for students.

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"Let's have an opportunity for kids to actually line up in their cars and one car at a time the graduate, with no more than three others, get out of the car with a driver in the car dropping them off," he said. 

Tackett said everyone who gets out of the car with the graduate will have their temperatures taken and answer a series of questions before walking through the arches and capping off years of hard work.

"We're so proud of these graduates, you've done an excellent job. We will always remember you, we just ask you to remember us," he said.

The commencement ceremony will be held on May 22, as planned before.

It'll start at 10 a.m. with the honor graduates. 

You can find more information on the ceremony here

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