‘Such a sight’: Cabrillo High School honors 2020 grads with 3rd annual street banners in West Long Beach

Rows of young, smiling faces adorned the streets of West Long Beach as Cabrillo High School honored over 100 graduates with green banners on light poles this fall.

The banners, which have been grant-funded for three years now, are just one way school staff wanted to honor an unprecedented class of graduates who exited high school during a global coronavirus pandemic.

“They didn’t have anything that every other class has enjoyed,” said Head Counselor Steve Duanes, who led the graduate banners project.

Duanes hopes that the project also motivates students as young as middle schoolers to have a spot in the class of banners.

“The impact to the community is amazing,” he said.

Banners were placed on streets including Santa Fe Avenue, Willow Street as well as outside the Long Beach Unified School District office.

Cabrillo High School seniors interested in being part of this annual banner project must commit to a four-year college and sign a photo release form to have their portraits taken and displayed in public.

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Crystal Niebla is the West Long Beach reporter through the Report for America program. Philanthropic organizations pledged to cover the local donor portion of her grant-funded position with the Post. If you want to support Crystal's work, you can donate to her Report For America position at lbpost.com/support.