Pandemic leads to creative graduation ceremonies | Education

Though the National Peanut Festival Fairgrounds made for a much less formal occasion, the primary spherical of graduation ceremonies happening Thursday was virtually regular.

Students have been giddy with pleasure and oldsters have been teary-eyed as they watched their youngsters put together to graduate into maturity.

Before they have been seated, Houston County High School seniors adjusted their caps and robes, their honorary ribbons and ropes, which symbolized their distinctive educational and ability accomplishments.

Parents and members of the family, in the meantime, have been adjusting their face masks and foldout chairs on the grass area of the out of doors amphitheater — an indication of the instances as many college students within the Wiregrass graduate underneath uncommon circumstances.

Trace Adkins’ “You’re Gonna Miss This” performed from the stadium audio system, setting the sentimental temper for the morning. In reality, the category of 2020 had missed rather a lot throughout the transformational time interval. They missed most of the milestones that normally tie up their Ok-12 instructional profession, as the specter of the coronavirus canceled the remaining faculty yr, proms, sports activities seasons, Honors Day ceremonies and baccalaureates.

“There was no doubt you were robbed of those memories. But in my opinion, you’ll be better suited for what is ahead because of your experience with COVID-19. In just two short months, you’ve learned that circumstances can change quickly, and we must all adapt while remaining positive,” Principal Lisa Towns mentioned to college students in her graduation speech. “Life doesn’t always go in our favor, but life goes on.”

Though their senior yr was marred by missed alternatives, class valedictorian Andrea Ferguson was optimistic concerning the expertise, calling their shared expertise “unforgettable.”

“I’m so thankful to be a part of a class so different than any other,” she mentioned.

Stage procession

Students have been referred to as from the bleachers, the place they have been appropriately socially distanced, to stroll throughout the stage.

Kimberly Wells pulled out her telephone to file her daughter, Laquesha, as she obtained her diploma and moved her tassel.

“It felt different, but I’m glad I was able to come to see her during an awkward moment like this,” she mentioned. “I wish more family could have been able to attend, but overall I’m just glad. It was magnificent.”

When state faculty Superintendent Eric Mackey introduced colleges would stay closed via the rest of the tutorial yr, many dad and mom and college students have been uncertain if a ceremony honoring graduates could be potential in any respect.

“It was definitely still a special moment for us,” Preston Anderson, a Houston County School graduate, mentioned. “It was really good getting to see them (classmates) one last time.”

Preston’s dad, Brandon, was pleased that colleges discovered a means to honor the graduating class.

“It feels great. There wasn’t much they could do with the virus going around, but they did the best they could,” he mentioned after the ceremony.

Houston County Schools held graduation ceremonies for Houston County, Cottonwood and Ashford High School college students, who have been among the many first spherical of graduating seniors Thursday, with many extra deliberate for Wiregrass colleges.

Rehobeth and Wicks-burg High School will maintain their graduation ceremonies Friday on the fairgrounds on Highway 231 South as effectively.

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