They rose to the top of their class after years of dedication to doing their best and staying focused on academic achievement.
On May 6, the Cincinnati Public Schools' Board of Education honored the Class of 2020’s 15 Valedictorians and 19 Salutatorians.
Typically a face-to-face annual event, this year's recognition featured, instead, a video highlighting the top scholars. Board members applauded and some wiped away tears.
"It touches my heart to see their faces and the big smiles that they have," said Carolyn Jones, Board president. "I will say to these students: You've done well, and you've made your mark coming out of high school. You are a resilient group, and you will do great things. And, on behalf of the Board, I am so proud of what our graduates have accomplished. Congratulations to you all."
Superintendent Laura Mitchell acknowledged that senior year for the Class of 2020 did not unfold as students might have expected, with proms, sports, Spring Break trips and big graduation ceremonies canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"So I'm very excited and happy that we can celebrate them and recognize them because this is a very special time in their lives," Mitchell said.