BAHS graduation plans amidst national pandemic

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Stock photo from Flickr.com

This year, graduation will take place in drive-through fashion around the BAHS building.

Mackenzie Ebeling

By MACKENZIE EBELING

The year that was supposed to be full of new memories was slowly taken away from high school seniors in the last couple of months. The main question: Will there still be a graduation ceremony? 

Principal Mr. Mike Fedisson and the administrative team have been working hard to make sure that BAHS seniors do not have to have a virtual graduation. On May 20, seniors and parents received an email sharing the updated plans for this year’s ceremony. 

The Class of 2020 will have a drive-through graduation ceremony on June 5 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. with a rain date of June 8. On May 21, students and families signed up for 15-minute time intervals with 4 other graduates and families, via a Sign Up Genius link. The groups of five graduates will arrive at the student parking lot, giving roughly three minutes per student. Each graduate is permitted up to 2 cars to limit the traffic around the school and surrounding streets. 

The graduate will receive their diploma and a name card from Mr. Fitzgerald and then proceed to one of the stage locations. There, the student and one other person may exit the vehicle and wait for the graduate’s name to be called, who will then cross the stage and take a picture. Each graduate will be filmed as they walk across the stage. 

Even though this is not a normal graduation and students will not be able to watch their friends receive their diploma, many students are thankful that Bellefonte was able to put this event together.

“As much as we wanted a normal graduation, a normal senior year, that wasn’t going to happen. Thanks to our community and school, we are able to feel recognized by signs, banners, and even a drive-through graduation. None of this is ideal, but I know myself and others are grateful for what is being done,” senior Annalee Caprio said. 

On June 9, there will be a video posted on the district’s YouTube account around 9 a.m. that will be titled “Graduation Celebration.” It will be a compilation of all of the videos taken of the graduates walking on graduation day. 

“We offer a heartfelt congratulations to the Class of 2020 and a thank you to all of you for your patience and support as this plan has been developed. You have truly been a gift to Bellefonte Area School District, and we are honored to be a part of your graduation celebration,”  Mr. Fedisson said. 

More specific documents about the graduation procedures can be found on the high school’s webpage.