Taking it outside, graduation to be held at Toyota

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Roy Nitzan

The Star won't be packed full of friends and families, nor will the artificial grass be planted with graduating seniors, as graduations across the district will be taken outside for socially distance ceremonies hosted at the Toyota Stadium on May 29, 30, and June 1. “As a school board and administration, we have tried to plan with several things in mind. We have wanted all along to conduct a graduation ceremony that is as close to a traditional ceremony as possible," Frisco ISD Board of Trustees Vice President John Classe said.

Caroline Caruso, Guest Contributor

Frisco ISD recently announced a 2020 outside graduation schedule for all schools to use Toyota Stadium for ceremonies on May 29, 30, and June 1 with the district already prepared to make adjustments, if necessary.

Graduation planning this year has been incredibly difficult,” Frisco ISD Board of Trustees Vice President John Classe said. “As a school board and administration, we have tried to plan with several things in mind. We have wanted all along to conduct a graduation ceremony that is as close to a traditional ceremony as possible.”

The district faced and still faces multiple obstacles in scheduling graduation ceremonies. 

“Trying to accomplish the objectives above and still be compliant with current restrictions in place as a result of COVID-19 has led to plans being changed repeatedly,” Classe said. “We have had five different plans for graduation as a result of the ever-changing situation and its restrictions. Our most recent plan was developed after Texas Governor Greg Abbott earlier this week announced that outdoor graduation ceremonies would be permitted under strict guidelines. This will allow us to conduct a traditional graduation ceremony at an outdoor venue with all graduates and their immediate families in attendance with some restrictions. We will continue to plan an alternative in case restrictions tighten again and for those students who are unable or uncomfortable with a large gathering at this time.”

From a parent’s perspective, alternative plans for graduation are greatly appreciated.

“I’m glad the district is considering a social-distanced graduation,” Jodi Webber said. “Graduation is such an important milestone for young people. Almost a right of life. They actually get to walk across the stage into something new. I understand a four-person limit may be hard for those with large immediate families, but ultimately it is for the safety of all who attend. While disappointing, we need to focus on who this graduation is really for: the seniors.”