MANLIUS — Bureau Valley High School is going to give its graduating seniors a proper send-off even if it comes two months later than scheduled.
Bureau Valley will hold an in-person graduation ceremony at 11 a.m, Sunday, July 19, at the football field, rain or shine. The graduation was postponed from May 17 in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.
BV principal Duane Price said based on survey results from the graduating class and their parents, the district knew their desire was to have an in-person ceremony.
“Planning of the ceremony has been challenge and will require some very specific modifications to protect the health of everyone, but most of the participants have been more than willing to make those changes if that’s what it took to have the ceremony,” Price said.
Price said BV has greatly appreciated the assistance of the Bureau, Putnam, Marshall County Health Department with the plan and made recommendations to “help us best prepare the precautionary safety measures.”
Only graduates, parents/guardians, stepparents and a few district employees will be permitted to attend. Due to number restrictions, other family members, friends, teachers, staff members and school board members will not be in attendance.
Graduates and parents must RSVP no later than 5 p.m. Thursday, July 16. Split families are asked to RSVP separately. Guest walk-ups on graduation day will not be admitted due to grouping restrictions. An email was sent to all graduates with a link to the RSVP form.
After the RSVP deadline, assigned seating notices will be emailed. This communication will include location of assigned seats on the football field, set arrival times and details about specific gate entrance.
All family members will need to bring their own lawn chairs; seating will not be provided. Guests may bring umbrellas to deflect heat or rain, but all are asked to be respectful of the vision of others during the ceremony.
The ceremony will come with these safety measures:
• Attendees will be in groupings of no more than 50 people. Groups will be separated from other groups by a minimum 30-feet of social distancing.
• In groupings of 50, families will be required to sit next to each other. Each family shall maintain at least 6-feet of social distance from all other families.
• All attendees (including graduates) must wear a face mask from their vehicles until they are seated. Face masks may only be removed while each individual graduate receives his/her diploma and while guests are in their seats.
• All attendees shall apply hand sanitizer while passing through the entrance gate.
• In anticipation of high temperatures, all attendees are encouraged to bring their own water bottles. Concession stands and refreshments will not be offered. Also, remember that the school is a drug, alcohol and tobacco-free premise.
• Congregating on school grounds before and after the ceremony will not be permitted.
All graduates must wear their caps and gowns (and, if provided, cords) for the duration of the ceremony. Under one’s gown, graduates shall wear appropriate dress attire, including dress shoes. Jeans, T-shirts, sandals and other informal attire will not be allowed.