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LaBrae seniors get special display

Staff photo / Bob Coupland LaBrae seniors Shane Stout, left, and Jason Calderone stand near the display of banners at the LaBrae school complex in Leavittsburg erected to honor members of this year’s senior class.

LEAVITTSBURG — Community members created a special display on exhibit at the LaBrae school complex recognizing the Class of 2020.

Senior Shane Stout and his father, John, coordinated the effort to get large banners made and erected on the school lawn showcasing each of the 86 seniors.

Shane Stout said they worked with photographer Kim Calderwood and had photos of each of the seniors along with their names printed on large, red-colored banners, first placed on the front lawn at Bascom Elementary School off North Leavitt Road, but since moved to another site on the school property to enable vehicles to slow down and see them.

The idea was discussed at a recent LaBrae Board of Education meeting as a way to recognize the senior class, which has missed many end-of-year school events due to the novel coronavirus outbreak.

Stout said the idea for the signs originated from another school in Florida that created large banners of each graduate and showcased them for the public to see.

“We had a lot of help from the community members to make this possible,” he said. “This is a blessing to have this going up. It is nice to have a little recognition.”

Stout, also a multimedia student at Trumbull Career and Technical Center, plans to attend the Pittsburgh Technical College for graphic design.

Jason Calderwood, a senior who will attend Ohio State University to study digital art and Japanese, said the seniors appreciate all the efforts from the school district and the community to get them recognized.

“It will be a nice temporary landmark. This is one additional layer of recognition for our seniors to have. They are deserving of that considering the circumstances,” LaBrae Superintendent Anthony Calderone said.

Calderone said staff member Katie Kistler sewed COVID-19 face masks and asked that donations for them be given to help offset senior class debt. Calderone said she raised $2,900 along with other fundraising from staff.

“Because of all the efforts, our seniors will not be prevented from getting their diplomas and not have any outstanding debt. The community really came together to help our senior class during these trying times,” he said.

This week, LaBrae seniors are being video recorded individually receiving their diplomas. The video recordings will be edited and merged to create a virtual graduation that will be aired May 31.

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