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Port Gibson High School modifies commencement plans for graduates and families



From Claiborne County School District Superintendent Dr. Annie Kilcrease:

While the situation surrounding COVID-19 or Coronavirus is still very prevalent, the administrative team of the Claiborne County School District has worked diligently 10 develop an alternate plan to properly celebrate the commencement of graduating seniors, while continuing to be compliant with social distancing guidelines. Commencement exercise for the Port Gibson High School Class of 2020 is scheduled for Friday, May 22, 2020, at 6 p.m. and will be held at the Port Gibson High School Football Stadium. Our goal is to give the graduates the best opportunity to celebrate their achievement in light of the current situation and restrictions.

This process has been methodically planned with the following guidelines: Each graduate will ride in a vehicle which will line up on the high school campus. At the designated time, the convoy of vehicles will be led to the football stadium parking lot in a parade-like fashion, escorted by the sheriff department, city police department and other local law enforcement officers. The courtesy police escorts will control the traffic, ensuring the safe and organized arrival of our students, while also ensuring that the processional is not interrupted with vehicles that are not graduation participants. Upon the arrival and parking of all vehicles in their assigned parking spaces, graduates are to remain in their vehicles until directed to exit. The graduation ceremony, as it is being conducted, will be projected on two large video monitors, whereas family members will be able to view the ceremony from their vehicles. The administration, valedictorian and salutatorian will deliver their addresses to the graduating class.

When the time comes for the graduates to receive their diplomas, only ten (10) students (maintaining six feet apart for social distancing) at a time will be allowed in the processional to walk across the stage to receive their diplomas, and to be professionally photographed. After being photographed, the graduates will then proceed back to their vehicles and the next set of 10 graduates will be permitted to exit their vehicles to proceed to receive their diplomas.

To ensure that we adhere to the CDC’s social distancing guidelines, we are mandating that everyone, other than the graduates, upon directions, remain in the parked vehicles. We ask that parents cooperate with this process to make it a memorable occasion for our seniors.

Further, due to our efforts to remain compliant with CDC guidance, we are in the process of developing a method for organizations, colleges, universities. clubs, groups, businesses and individuals to award seniors of their choice scholarships and other gifts. More details regarding this opportunity will be provided at a later date.

Continue to watch the District’s web page and Facebook for updates as we continue to roll out alternate plans in lieu of the traditional Class Night. Our goal is to provide the best opportunities for our 2020 graduates as we attempt to simulate the usually traditional final week of the seniors· high school career during these untraditional and tumultuous times. Stay Connected!

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