GATE CITY — Scott County’s Class of 2021 will have a more traditional graduation ceremony than last year, but things won’t quite be back to normal.
The Scott County School Board recently approved this year’s graduation dates for the three high schools. Plans for the ceremonies will be approved next month, but some health and safety guidelines have already been established.
“All three graduations will be outdoor ceremonies,” said Assistant Superintendent Jason Smith.
“At this time, each high school is developing their plan on how that graduation will look on their campus,” he said.
When are the graduation dates?
Rye Cove High School
- May 24 at 7 p.m.
- Rain date one: May 26 at 7 p.m.
- Rain date two: May 27 at 7 p.m.
Gate City High School
- May 26 at 7 p.m.
- Rain date one: May 27 at 7 p.m.
- Rain date two: May 28 at 7 p.m.
Twin Springs High School
- May 27 at 7 p.m.
- Rain date one: June 1 at 7 p.m.
- Rain date two: June 2 at 7 p.m.
What are the ceremony plans?
Smith said leaders at each school are working on the details of their ceremonies, but some guidelines have been established by Gov. Ralph Northam through executive order. These guidelines include the following:
• Graduation events held outdoors will be capped at 5,000 people or 30% of the venue capacity, whichever is less.
• Attendees must wear masks and follow other guidelines and safety protocols to ensure proper distancing.
• Require 10 feet of physical distancing between parties. This includes handshakes, hugs and other physical interactions.
Smith said this year’s ceremonies will look more normal than last year’s, when graduates either scheduled times to walk the stage individually or participated in a drive-thru graduation. This year, all students will graduate in the stadiums, and a certain number of tickets will be given to each graduate for family and friends.
“Our folks now are in the process of measuring in their stadiums, getting seating capacity and getting a final number of how many will actually be allowed to come in person,” Smith said, “but they will be in-person graduations, and families will be able to attend those graduations.”
What about proms?
Due to continued health and safety concerns about COVID-19, none of Scott County’s high schools will hold school-sponsored proms this year. Last year’s proms were also canceled, Smith said.