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‘Pursue Your Dreams’

Charles Berkley, Jr.

Dear Central High School Graduates of 2020:

I want to express my congratulations to each of you on successfully completing an important milestone in what will be just one of many accomplishments in your lifetime. You made it to the final stretch, rounded the corner, and you are about to become the 54th graduating class of Central High School.

Despite the COVID-19 madness that swirls around us, forcing us to close schools for the rest of the year in mid-March, each of you will receive your diploma on May 30.

I know, and your parents and families know, you are disappointed, upset, confused and sad. This is not how the last three months of your senior year was supposed to go. You’re potentially missing out on being able to enjoy the final months and days of your senior year, hanging out with friends, dreaming about one last summer before you all head out in different directions. You may lose experiences like competing with your classmates on spring sports teams, the chance to attend the Junior/ Senior Prom, the chance to go on your senior trip, and most importantly to have the traditional graduation experiences with Class Night and walking across the stage receiving your diploma. It is natural that you may be feeling sad, this situation has certainly created a sense of loss.

You are no strangers to adversity. Nineteen years ago, you entered the world at another tumultuous time; when the world, post 9/11, was forced to adjust and change our way of life as a result of the worst terrorist attack our country had ever experienced. You came into the world during a time of chaos, and chaos is now ushering you out of high school and pushing you into adulthood. You are used to uncertainty and you know how to handle unpredictable times.

While the class of 2020 is visionary, nobody could have anticipated our current circumstance becoming a reality. While it would never be my wish to have our senior year disrupted in this manner, I can tell you that you have experienced many lessons that will benefit you in the future. You demonstrated perseverance in the face of adversity. You have shown us that poise is an essential skill that reaps many rewards. You have shown strength and determination can overcome challenges. And finally, you have shown that sacrifice can strengthen personal capacity. Please don’t look back on your senior year as the year that could have been. Instead, remember this time as a golden opportunity for what might be and remember this quote, “While life is not fair, your possibilities are endless.”

You have proven yourselves to be resilient and it is obvious that you come from a strong heritage of folks who help each other when times are tough. Give back to your community where you may live, because our lives should be one of service. You will forever represent your high school and your community so never forget these two things: “Charger Pride” and “Nothing Is Bigger Than The Heart Of A Charger.”

I speak not only for myself, but for the school board and our entire community, “Congratulations to each of you and we are all proud of the Class of 2020.”

Charles M. Berkley Jr.

Division Superintendent

Lunenburg County Public Schools