Sending a virtual hug to the Class of 2020 who lost their senior spring through 'adoption'

Karen Jordan Image
Wednesday, April 29, 2020

By now, high school seniors would be in the thick of end of the year activities, but the quintessential senior moments are nearly impossible now.

"We've gotten the short end of the stick for milestones and memories," said Shawn Burgher, a parent.

Burgher's daughter, Cheyanne, is a senior at Bremen High School.

Burgher was inspired to start the Facebook page, "Adopt a Senior" for all of the seniors in school district 228, which covers four high schools.

Parents post their kids' pictures and bios, thensomeone in the community types "adopted" in the comments.

The sponsor can send anything from a congratulatory card to a gift basket.

It's a way to send the class of 2020 a virtual hug.

"They're devastated. This is the month, this May coming up when all of these dreams and ambitions and goals for seniors are being crushed," Burgher said.

Burger started the page last Thursday,and more than 75 kids have already been adopted.

"I think it was sweet because the stranger you don't know is opening up their life to you," said Samantha Wardisiani, a senior at Bremen High School.

Wardisiani's mom, Bridget Riley, adopted another student.

"I actually adopted a boy from Oak Forest. I've got a little care package going for him," Riley said.

The adoptions may just be the beginning. The hope is that people who adopted the seniors will keep checking on them when they go to college and help them with that transition.