San Antonio – South San High School staff found a way to make the top 10 students of the graduating class of 2020 feel special this week.
A caravan of police, school buses and cars honked their way into the students’ neighborhoods for a surprise announcement that they made the top 10 list and it was all captured on video.
High School Principal Lee Hernandez said there was something special about having everyone honking, cheering and including family and neighbors in the celebration.
“Everywhere we went there was a decent gathering because the parents knew, but the kids are walking out like, ‘Why are you all here?’" he smiled.
Social media almost ruined the surprise for Salutatorian Lourdes Izarraras-Medina, when she noticed other top 10 students had made the list.
“Okay, I didn’t get top 10. I was on the verge of tears and then I heard them pulling up honking and I was like ‘Oh my God, they’re here,’” she said.
The group pulled up with a bouquet of balloons, one of them with the number two, representing her rank, and a box of Tiff’s Treats cookies.
Medina is proud of her accomplishment and her peers, as it’s been an untraditional end of their senior year.
“Congrats, we did it! We fought hard to be there and we got it,” she said.
“They’ve worked so hard all their lives but it feels like it’s been cut short,” Hernandez said. “I see the finish line and I know I’m going to cross it, but you actually experience that crossing and breaking the tape.”
He hopes to make this a tradition in the future.
Medina has two reasons to celebrate — she’s also graduating from Palo Alto College with her liberal arts degree and with honors. Our Lady of The Lakes University is next for a political science major and a minor in cultural studies.
Her message to students behind her: “Work hard, but have fun. Have a good time. These years fly by quickly."
Click here to see the video of all the students who made the top 10.