Graduation program omits 15 teens' names

The parents of one student whose name was among several left off of the Hinsdale Central graduation program were unhappy with the district’s initial plan to correct the error.

Matt and Tracy Zander, whose son, Will, is a member of the Class of 2022, sent an email to several district individuals Saturday about the omission of all students whose last name begins with “Z” from the program. They wrote that sending out corrected programs to the 15 affected families is not enough.

“A true effort in correcting this significant error would be reprinting everyone’s programs and mailing them out to all the graduating students and families with a letter explaining the mistake and a sincere apology,” they state in the email, a copy of which was sent to The Hinsdalean. “Someone dropped the ball here in a big way, and this was an easy thing to avoid. In a corporate setting, this person would have lost their job the following morning.”

The Zanders say they and others told administrators about the error before the ceremony began.

“(S)omeone could have made a little joke about it and read off the names and their accomplishments on the spot and told us at the ceremony that we would all get a reprint,” the email states. “That would have fixed the problem entirely and made the mistake part of the fabric of the graduation ceremony, probably a funny and memorable one as well.”

An email from Principal Bill Walsh went out Saturday afternoon to graduates and their parents and guardians listing the omitted names, a district spokesman said.

“As you noticed, we accidentally excluded the following graduate names from the graduation program. From the bottom of our hearts we apologize for this mistake and want to try and make it right,” he states.

The program will be reprinted, hand-delivered to the homes of the affected graduates and mailed to all other graduates, the email states.

“This will not happen again,” Walsh states.

Tracy Zander said Wednesday she was satisifed with the district’s response.