With the COVID-19 pandemic closing schools statewide and disrupting plans for graduation ceremonies, schools need to be creative to recognize the accomplishments of their seniors. Many district leaders are considering rescheduling events – if the pandemic and space availability allow – but they still want to give seniors a few special memories now.
The Oregon Department of Education recently released guidance on high school graduation ceremonies. The email to superintendents and principals said the class of 2020, as well as other grade levels, should be celebrated while still honoring Gov. Kate Brown’s “Stay Home, Save Lives” coronavirus pandemic order.
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Wenatchee and Eastmont school districts's plan is to pool resources to offer a large outdoor venue for graduation, complete with a stage, lights and a massive screen. Students and families would stay in their cars during the condensed ceremony. Students would individually approach the stage in an organized format that would meet social distancing requirements. Both districts would use the same venue, with the graduations for WestSide, Wenatchee and Eastmont happening at different times. Read the news article here.
Coordinate with your local radio station to broadcast the ceremony. Do not use your own transmitter. If your local radio option isn’t an option, "Call-to-listen" services can be used that do not require an internet connection for the listener. Two such services are Zeno Media or Audio Now. The school would provide the program with the audio feed, (via the internet) and they provide the school with a phone number that their audience can use to listen to the audio stream. This service allows participants to use any phone, including landline, to listen to the program. Another option is to use internet streaming services such as Facebook Live. Viewers/listeners would need a smart phone or internet connected device to participate.