More than 400 Lee County High School seniors donned caps and gowns and boarded school buses Friday for a 'Parade of Graduates' through their former schools in the LCSS. These seniors are shown walking through the halls of Lee County's Pre-K School. (April 12, 2013)
LEESBURG, Ga. -- More than 400 Lee County High School students who will graduate next month donned their red caps and gowns a little early Friday and boarded school buses for a sentimental journey through the school system.
Starting at Lee County Pre-K, and with the strains of "Pomp and Circumstance" playing over the school's speaker system, the seniors gathered for a Parade of Graduates -- a procession through each of the Lee County schools they attended as young children.
From the Pre-k the students split up, climbed into buses and visited their former elementary and middle schools. At the schools, their former teachers and younger students lined the hallways, clapping and cheering.
"This is an activity that connects where our seniors started out to where they finish, and in that respect it just makes sense," Lee High Principal Kevin Dowling said. "It's also the only time some of them will have somebody get excited about their graduation, somebody clapping for them and have somebody pat them on the back.
The Graduate Parade is the second for Lee County's senior class, and Dowling said the first one was a tough sell.
"The funny thing is when we started doing this last year the kids had their doubts," Dowling said. "But after having done it they realized that the little kids treat seniors like rock stars. They also enjoyed walking through their old schools and seeing former teachers holding up their pictures. It really makes an impression on the younger kids and it turned out to be a lot of fun for the seniors."