Even with schools closed for the rest of the 2019-2020 academic year and the need for social distancing in the age of COVID-19, the Batesburg-Leesville High School Class of 2020 will get to take part in a time-honored tradition.
Traditionally, the “Panther Prowl” is when BLHS students don their caps and gowns and march through the halls of all Lexington Three schools. This year, the alternate plan to keep students, staff and families healthy and safe is a Panther Prowl Parade.
On Friday, May 22, senior students will meet at the high school at 10:15 a.m., then line up alongside the staff parking lot/CATE side of the building. Promptly at 10:30, seniors will depart with a police escort courtesy of the Batesburg-Leesville Police Department and make the first stop on the parade route: the Fine Arts Center parking lot/student parking lot at the high school.
“Since B-L Primary School is currently under construction, we are encouraging staff from that school, along with staff from B-L High School, parents, families, and members of the general public to line up at the first parade stop,” the school district stated in a Monday press release.
The parade route will continue down Summerland Avenue toward Wendy’s, past Sonic and Strong Body Fitness and make a left at the traffic light onto West Columbia Avenue. At around 10:45 a.m., seniors should be passing by the Lexington Three Lifelong Learning Center. Staff at the Lifelong Learning Center are encouraged to line their cars along West Columbia Avenue and wave to students.
“Any District Office staff who would like to participate can line up there as well,” the press release stated.
The Panther Prowl Parade will continue down U.S. 1 into Leesville, then turn right onto South Lee Street and stop at Batesburg-Leesville Elementary School around 10:50 a.m. There, staff members from B-L Elementary School are asked to please line up according to directions provided by the school district.
After departing the elementary school, the parade will continue to Batesburg-Leesville Middle School on Shealy Road, where staff will be asked to line up in support of students. Then the parade will disperse.
“Participants can decorate their cars, honk their horns, etc. in celebration of the class of 2020! Please remember that for the health and safety of all participants, we ask that everyone remain inside of their cars at all times,” the release stated. “We also respectfully ask that no more than two people be inside of each car in order to stay in compliance with the Governor’s social distancing orders. Class of 2020, we’re doing everything in our power to make sure that you are celebrated the way that the 99 classes before you were. We are #lex3 and we are forever #stayingconnected!”