Important Information Regarding High School Graduation (UPDATED 6/15)
Dear Seniors and Parents,
With ongoing coronavirus-related restrictions on large gatherings, the 2020 Whitesboro High School Commencement Ceremony must be held outside of Whitesboro High School in a controlled setting in which social distancing and other required safety measures are practiced. Governor Cuomo is now allowing outside ceremonies with up to 150 people starting on June 26, 2020. As a result of his announcement, our celebration will now take place on June 27, 2020 in order to maximize participation. Lineup times for each graduate have been mailed out.
Please enter campus using the North Drive, each vehicle will be directed by Whitesboro staff to a designated parking area. Each graduate will arrive 15 minutes prior to their assigned time wearing their cap and gown, and enter through the gymnasium doors to be put into the lineup. Students will have their name announced, walk across the stage, receive their diploma, turn their tassel, and have their photo taken by family members. A professional photographer will then take their photo in the auditorium lobby after the graduate exits the stage. Graduates will then return to their vehicles.
Graduates will be able to include four family members to accompany them for this event. Tickets are numbered to assist in organizing parking. Only four family members will be allowed to exit vehicles with the graduate. Masks need to be worn at all times by those exiting the car except for when the graduate walks across the stage and during pictures. After receiving your diploma and student pictures are taken, we ask that graduates and guests leave campus immediately so the next group of graduates and family members can safety take their places. This is necessary to keep the 150 person limit in place.
A slideshow including speeches and other aspects typically associated with our graduation ceremony will be produced and posted on the district website. In addition, the Class of 2020 will be recognized at halftime of our homecoming football game on October 2, 2020. If allowed, we are still hoping to have our Senior Ball on July 23, 2020. A decision will be posted on the district website by July 9, 2020. Thank you for your support. If needed, the rain date for the outdoor ceremony will be Sunday, June 28, 2020. A decision will be posted on the district website by late afternoon on Friday, June 26. Thank you for your understanding and patience during these times.
High School Principal
Please click here to read the Interim Guidance for Graduation Celebrations During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency in New York State.
Today, Sunday June 7th, the Governor announced a change in the gathering restrictions regarding graduations. We will review his executive order as soon as it is written and will revise our plans accordingly.
Our new date for high school graduation will be June 27, 2020. We will inform you of final plans this week.
Thank you for your patience during this challenging time.
After patiently waiting for weeks, New York State schools received guidance from Governor Cuomo yesterday regarding the types of graduation we are allowed to celebrate. All along, our goal has been to have the most inclusive ceremony that political and health officials would allow. Student leaders were clear in this desire as well.
As a result of the guidance from Governor Cuomo, Whitesboro High School will conduct our commencement ceremony this year using the state-approved drive-through format. All Class of 2020 graduates will have the opportunity to participate on our original scheduled date of June 20, 2020. We will need both a morning and an afternoon session for our celebration. Details are complete and will be mailed out to all graduates and families by this Monday.
Thank you for your understanding. We are excited to be able to celebrate our students and their accomplishments during these historic times. Go Blue!
Dear Class of 2020, Parents, Families, and Friends,
First, thank you for your patience as we continue to actively pursue ways to provide our seniors with the best graduation option possible. Our high school administration will continue to work closely with student representatives to gather their input and use it to inform our planning. This is a momentous time in their lives and the lives of their families and friends and their voices are essential to the decision making process.
As you know, one of the challenges we are facing is the uncertainty of gathering restrictions that will be in place at the time of our ceremony. We have observed the Governor modify gathering restrictions even before current orders expire. For this reason, we have yet to finalize our plans and remain cautiously optimistic that the current restriction on gatherings may expand to allow for greater numbers. Our goal is to have our plans finalized and announced on June 10. We ask that you reserve June 19, 20, and 21 as dates for graduation as we may need multiple days to accommodate all students depending on gathering limitations. Again, thank you for your patience and understanding. We will do our best to make the occasion as memorable as possible.
Mr. Jeffrey Kuhn
High School Principal
Dr. Brian K. Bellair
Superintendent of Schools