The coronavirus has prompted several school districts on the Peninsula to hold off on in-person graduation ceremonies, live streaming virtual ceremonies instead.
But not Newport News Public Schools.
The school district has decided to host an in-person graduation ceremony for their seniors in June. The decision was made after feedback from high school seniors and school administration, according to a news release from the district.
“The Class of 2020 has certainly shown us that despite the challenges presented during the past few months, they are champions,” according to the announcement. “While this school year has been unusual, Newport News Public Schools’ commencement festivities will continue the time-honored traditions of celebrating the successes of our graduates.”
Each high school graduation ceremony will feature recorded speeches from the superintendent, school board members, school principal as well as the senior class president, valedictorian and salutatorian.
Each graduate is limited to three guests with a graduation time slot. Once the student arrives, he or she will maintain a social distance of six feet apart, walk across the stage to pick up their diploma and greet the school principal and assistant principals.
The school district also plans to broadcast the ceremonies live on public television, the district’s YouTube channel and other media.
“We are committed to ensuring a safe and memorable graduation ceremony to honor our graduates,” said George Parker, superintendent of schools, in a prepared statement. “We thank our graduates, families and staff for their cooperation.”
The following schools are having a modified commencement ceremony at Todd Stadium, with restrictions to 10 people the week of June 15:
- Achievable Dream High School: Friday, June 19 at 10 a.m.
- Rain date: Friday, June 26 at 10 a.m.
- Denbigh High School: Thursday, June 18 at 10 a.m.
- Rain date: Thursday, June 25 at 10 a.m.
- Heritage High School: Friday, June 19 at noon.
- Rain date: Friday, June 26 at 12 p.m.
- Menchville High School: Monday, June 15 at 10 a.m.
- Rain date: Monday, June 22 at 10 a.m.
- Warwick High School: Tuesday, June 16 at 10 a.m.
- Rain date: Tuesday, June 23 at 10 a.m.
- Woodside High School: Wednesday, June 17 at 10 a.m.
- Rain date: Wednesday, June 24 at 10 a.m.
Leading up to the graduation ceremonies, NNPS is celebrating Senior Spirit Week with virtual superlatives, online contests and personalized signs with the student’s name displayed on the school’s lawn.
For more information about the Newport News Public Schools graduation ceremonies, visit the school district’s website.
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