‘Prom is going to happen’: Darien High to bring back senior dance, outdoor graduation with modifications

DARIEN — Darien’s prom will return this year after being canceled due to the pandemic for the class of 2020.

At a recent Board of Education meeting, Schools Superintendent Alan Addley said the school currently intends to host Darien High School’s prom on June 4. He addressed prom in relation to other end-of-year events for seniors.

“Prom is going to happen,” he said, adding the event will likely be held on the school campus and food trucks will possibly be brought in.

“The students can get dressed up and we will enforce social distance. We will do everything we can to make this an experience for the students,” he said.

The school also intends to hold an outdoor graduation ceremony while keeping current state safety guidelines in mind.

Addley said social distancing and a cap on attendees in accordance with whatever guidelines are in effect at that time will be followed and, if necessary, the ceremony could be held in two shifts.

“We plan to have some real culminating experiences for our students this year that will comply with whatever guidelines are in effect,” he said.

Last year, a graduation drive-thru was held at Darien High School with cars decorated and school and district staff waving and cheering grads on.

The Darien High School Parent Association held various events including “Adopt a senior” that paired seniors with younger students for special gifts and care packages, a large banner placed downtown for the seniors, and special signs placed on Darien grads’ lawns.

As Darien seniors came to the realization in the spring they would not be returning to school before graduation, Darien Class of 2020 member Lily Genovese penned her thoughts that she said she felt echoed her classmates’ sense of grief and loss at the abrupt halt of what would have been a triumphant year for seniors.

“In general, time goes by too fast for the exhale. We would have finished senior year feeling on top of the school, on top of the world, and at the tippety top of our breath. But now, we are cut off on that inhale. Suffocating,” she wrote. “We are living through history. Let’s make it.”