Tuesday, May 12, 2020
High School Parents and Families,
This evening an update was provided to our Board of Trustees pertaining to our ongoing graduation efforts. The update included various versions of in-person graduation ceremonies that could vary in size depending on health conditions present in our community. At this time, our primary plan includes a ceremony that involves all of our graduating seniors by school. This plan also accommodates two tickets per graduate to allow parents/guardians to attend. Including needed personnel, this would include nearly 1,000 participants and attendees. However, should health conditions change a smaller ceremony may be required and we may adjust the size of ceremonies to include two graduation ceremonies per school (150 graduates, 300 guests)
At this time, our ceremonies remain planned for Nelson Stadium at Carroll College. This outdoor venue is an important and needed precautionary factor. Graduates will sit apart from one another allowing for proper distancing on all sides. This will be a no-contact ceremony with a planned program that will be shorter in length than previous years.
In addition, our graduation plans call for strict adherence to personal safety precautions including all attendees (graduates, guests, and graduation personnel) being required to wear a mask/facial covering. Attendees will be required to safely distance while entering the ceremony, attending the ceremony, and exiting the ceremony. Furthermore, attendees will be required to complete a health screening questionnaire as part of their admittance.
I would like to stress the tentative nature of these plans as we continue to work through an ever-evolving crisis. Throughout the last two months, we have worked closely with health officials and health care professionals in developing, reviewing, and revising our plans. Like you, I hope that the health of our community will continue to improve as our state reopens. However, should that change, please expect that our graduation plans will need to change as well in order to continue to comply with local and state expectations.
As we collectively move forward, please know that your continued understanding is appreciated. Our ability to accomplish these plans will rest on the personal decisions that we make each day that ultimately inform our health, the health of our loved ones and the composite health of our community. Your continued diligence in this regard is valued as we all strive to ensure the absolute best for our graduates, our families, and our Helena community.
Thank you again – Please take care, stay safe and stay connected.
Superintendent, Helena Public Schools