Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 1 December 2020

CORONAVIRUS

Dubai parent pays to light up Burj Khalifa to congratulate class on graduation

Projecting a message onto the world's tallest tower can cost hundreds of thousands of dirhams

A parent at Jumeira Baccalaureate School sponsored a message for pupils on the Burj Khalifa. Courtesy - Jumeira Baccalaureate School
A parent at Jumeira Baccalaureate School sponsored a message for pupils on the Burj Khalifa. Courtesy - Jumeira Baccalaureate School

It is one of the world's biggest advertising boards - and a Dubai parent spared no expense to congratulate her daughter and classmates on finishing their final year.

A message for school leavers at Jumeira Baccalaureate School was projected on Burj Khalifa on Wednesday night.

The commercial cost is typically Dh250,000 for a full segment - though it was possible the brief stunt was performed at a knock-down rate.

'JBS Class of 2020, Congratulations!' flashed up on the 828-metre-tall tower.

The message was sponsored by a parent of a pupil in grade 12 at the school who wished to surprise her daughter and her classmates.

Speaking on the condition that we not use her name, she told The National she was a long-time supporter of the school and was thrilled to see her daughter's year graduate. She declined to discuss how much was paid for the brief light show.

"I am a proud parent at Jumeira Baccalaureate School. I know all the children in the graduating class and wanted to uplift their spirits," she said.

"2020 has been an odd and difficult year for our children and I wanted to spread some good cheer."

Some pupils have been with their current classmates for up to 14 years.

Many school-leavers lamented that they had to forego the usual fanfare, along with the chance for a final hug and the scribbling of a note or name on a t-shirt.

"I have known most of the pupils since they were children. I have watched them grow up and I felt sad that they were going to miss their graduation, which is such an important milestone," she said.

"I wanted to surprise them and wanted to do something special to remember the Class of 2020."

"We came together as a community, and celebrated this special occasion virtually."

Richard Drew, principal at Jumeira Baccalaureate School, said described the message for grade 12 leavers as a "remarkable gesture".

"The JBS class of 2020 will certainly be celebrated in history," he said.

Updated: April 23, 2020 06:07 PM

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