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Superintendent funds half of outdoor prom tickets

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    SAGINAW, Michigan (WNEM) — With pandemic upending everyone’s lives last year, many high schoolers missed out on their senior prom and other memories that came with those cherished years.

But after missing out on last year’s prom, one school district made sure none of their students missed out on this year’s prom.

“I can tell you play by play what took place at my prom,” said Saginaw Public Schools Superintendent Ramont Roberts.

That’s why Roberts did his part to make sure students had a great prom. Roberts used discretionary funds from the superintendent’s budget to pay for half the cost of this year’s prom tickets.

“It was actually a board member, Ms. Thompson, that you know kind of said, ‘Hey listen we need to look at ways we can help our kids through these tough times, our kids and our families you know particularly with prom.’ You know I said let me see if there’s something that I can do from my level to do that,” Roberts said.

Saginaw High and the Saginaw Arts and Sciences Academy had their proms Thursday night, May 20. Saginaw Arthur Hill has its big event Friday night, May 21. According to the school district’s guidelines, the proms took place outdoors with students wearing masks and separated into groups of six.

Roberts said he’s heard from a lot of people who appreciate his gesture, but seeing the students enjoying themselves at prom is all the thanks he needs.

“That stuff for me, just watching that stuff did it because that’s what it’s about,” Roberts said.

Roberts said the class of 2021 has been through a lot. Seeing the class of 2020 endure no prom, no commencement experiences, then starting this school year online, no athletic or social activities, and no face-to-face learning until March 1.

After a tumultuous 14 months, Roberts wanted to make sure students ended the school year in style.

“I think about the kind of senior year that they had and you know as an educator and even as a person it makes you just want to do everything you can to try to normalize their experience,” Roberts said. “And also try to make it a very good experience for them. So that’s what this was about.”

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